Aberdeen Art Gallery artworks to feature in major exhibition overseas

22 July 2015

Artwork on loan from Aberdeen Art Gallery will feature in a major international exhibition of works by The Glasgow Boys - the foremost group of British artists of their day - in The Netherlands later this year.

The Drents Museum in Assen will host the exhibition, which will be the first retrospective exclusively dedicated to works of The Glasgow Boys outside of Great Britain since 1900.

The show will feature Scottish landscapes, portraits and decorative paintings by ten artists - James Guthrie, Edward Walton, Joseph Crawhall, James Paterson, John Lavery, William York MacGregor, George Henry, Edward Hornel, Arthur Melville and William Kennedy.

The 80 paintings and 40 works on paper, which include pieces from several Scottish museums including Aberdeen Art Gallery, will focus on the late 19th century period, when this group of young Scottish painters influenced artists across Europe and the world.

The Tennis Party, the famous painting of the urban middle classes at play by Sir John Lavery, a favourite of visitors to Aberdeen Art Gallery, is one of 14 artworks on loan from the gallery.

Before the painting is shipped off to The Netherlands it can be seen as part of the New Balls, Please! exhibition at Aberdeen Maritime Museum, Shiprow, until Saturday 09 August (2015).

The Drents Museum is one of a number of prestigious venues which will be temporary homes to some of Aberdeen Art Gallery's prized collection while the gallery is closed as part of a £30m redevelopment project. Inspiring Art and Music will see the transformation of the Art Gallery, Cowdray Hall and Memorial Hall through significant investment in the fabric of the buildings, new exhibition and display galleries and improved facilities for visitors. To learn more about the project, which is due to be completed in winter 2017, visit the project blog at www.inspiringartandmusic.tumblr.com

This is the first exhibition in the series of Art Around 1900 in International Perspective and will be accompanied by a book which explores, for the first time, how the presence of The Hague School in Scotland influenced the Glasgow Boys.

Director Annabelle Birnie said: "The exhibition will enhance and enrich the museum's focus on its own collection of art around 1900, in which comparable realistic, impressionistic and symbolist works are represented."

Deputy leader of Aberdeen City Council Councillor Marie Boulton said: "During Aberdeen Art Gallery's closure period the city's collections will feature in a number of venues in the city and Aberdeenshire, and will travel nationally and internationally.

"It is clear how highly the city's collection is regarded that pieces are in constant demand to be on show by prestigious galleries here and abroad."

Christine Rew, Aberdeen Art Gallery and Museums Manager, said: "We were delighted to be asked to lend to this important exhibition of work by the Glasgow Boys. As the Art Gallery is closed for redevelopment we are able to send some of our best loved paintings, including Going to School by Jules Bastien-Lepage and To Pastures New by Sir James Guthrie, where they will be seen for the first time by many new visitors."

The Glasgow Boys was a group of approximately 20 diverse painters who were friends and often painted together. They rebelled against the establishment and, from the mid-1880s, were very successful with their innovative work. They travelled to Paris and Japan and took inspiration from the painters of Barbizon and The Hague school, often painting natural landscapes and scenes from rural life. They were also interested in the French Impressionists, aspects of which can be seen in their work, such as their choice of theme, affording special attention to light effects and colour, a sketch-like work method and outdoor painting.

The exhibition will open on Tuesday 22 September 2015 and will run through to Sunday 07 February 2016. For more information visit www.drentsmuseum.nl