Art History Lectures Autumn 2014

Lectures with art historian Adrian Sumner

Hartford Methodist Church Hall
Beach Road

2.00pm - £5.00 (£4.00 concessions)
including refreshments
Plenty of free car parking
Click here for a map to the venue

Tuesday 14 October
Constable and Turner - Landscape Transformed

A lecture looking at these two great revolutionaries, seen in the context of contemporary landscape art. Both John Constable and Joseph Mallord William Turner were passionate about Landscape and created personal visions through which we see Landscape, and particularly English Landscape, today.

We trace their influence through the French Romantic and Neo-Classical painters, as well as the Impressionists and Post-Impressionists, not to mention the New English Romantics of the inter-war period. Altogether this will be a marvellous journey of discovery.

There is a major exhibition of the work of John Constable at the V&A, and a JMW Turner exhibition of Late Paintings at Tate Britain.

Click here to book tickets online.

John Constable paintings here.
JMW Turner paintings here.

Tuesday 11 November
The Arts and Crafts Movement and its Legacy

A lecture looking at the late Victorian flowering of Native Craft Skills, in the face of increasing industrialization and standardization.

Led by William Morris and John Ruskin, who between them, aided and abetted by some of the greatest artists of the period (Rossetti, Burne-Jones, Walter Crane), effected a sea-change in design which would have echoes across Europe for almost a century, and, in the process, created some of the most beautiful art and artifacts ever made.

A feast for the eye, the heart, the mind and the soul.

Click here to book tickets online.

John Ruskin paintings here.
Burne-Jones paintings here.

Tuesday 9 December
A new look at Klimt and Vienna

A lecture, featuring the most gorgeous images imaginable, exploring the work of this most influential of artists. The centre of the artistic whirlwind which was Vienna at the very beginning of the 20th Century, Klimt was a founder member of the Vienna Secession, which embodied the exotic local flowering of international Art Nouveau. With the architects Josef Maria Olbrich, Joseph Hoffman and Otto Wagner, and the designer Koloman Moser, Klimt revolutionized the Fine and Decorative Arts in Northern Europe, providing inspiration for generations of artists to come, a legacy passed on via the highly-influential Wiener Werkstatte. In his subject matter and scandalous private life Klimt had a powerful effect on such younger artists as Egon Schiele and Oskar Kokoshka, contributing to the ethos of the Expressionist movement in Austria, Germany and elsewhere. Almost incidentally, these artists created a form which contained the seeds of Art Deco, and which thus managed to be key to the period style of the 1920s and ‘30s.

Since the revival of interest in the 1960s , the reputation of Gustav Klimt has continued to grow. Today images of his work are recognised around the world, and he is admired and studied more than ever before.

Click here to book tickets online.

Gustav Klimt paintings here.

Click here to view/download these flyers

Scandimania Study Day

The Art of the Dark and Frozen North
A Study Day with Adrian Sumner
Saturday 29 November
Grosvenor Museum, Chester

Abandon any misconceptions - yes it can be cold, and yes it’s the Land of the Midnight Sun, but the Art can be a startling and brilliant revelation. Join me in this expedition of discovery (don’t worry, we probably won’t have to eat the sled-dogs.) And all in a single day.

10.30am - Arrive, sign in, drink coffee (or possibly tea).

10.45am - Lecture: Edvard Munch and the Expressionists (vs the World).
A crucial influence on 20th Century Art, and one of the originators of Expressionism in Germany, Munch is very much more than his popular image as the poster boy of Modern Neurosis. This lecture looks at Portraits (and Self-Portraits), Landscapes (External and Internal),  Public Commissions, Woodcuts and Lithographs, Vampires, Madonnas and the Nordic Summer Night. Romantic indeed, in the proper sense of the word.

11.45am - More coffee (unless you’re having tea.)

11.30am - Lecture: Nordic Landscape.
By which I mean the actual landscape- trees, rivers and so forth. Looking at the Landscape Art created by the emerging National Romanticism of the 19th Century, and featuring atmospheric views of lakes, fjords, forests, snowscapes, and the tiny spaces in them occupied by mankind. By artists of whose names you may never have heard, but , once seen, will never forget.

12.30pm - Lunch (Light but filling- includes fruit and drinks. Not many pies).

1.30pm - Lecture: The Bridge.
Of all the facets of Nordic Society and Culture covered by ‘Nordic Noir’…in books, films, television…. the one aspect glaringly conspicuous in its absence, is the Art. Why? Because it isn’t Noir—instead , it’s full of Light and Hope and, dare I say it, Joie-de-Vivre.  This lecture examines the scope of this art, from Neolithic stone-scrapings, via the Vikings, to the Golden Age in the 19th Century, and crucial contribution to Modernism in the 20th. (not just the same old lecture, by the way, but featuring lots of new slides, artists and musings, as well as sections on Images of Wildlife and Flora).

3.00pm - Questions, queries, points and issues.

3.30pm - Farewell.

The day costs £15 (yes, just £15) and includes refreshments and  lunch.
For booking, call Adrian Sumner on 01606 782516 or email on

Blackwell and Levens Hall

Heritage Tour on Sunday 14 September to Blackwell Arts and Craft House, Kendal and Levens Hall.

Over by Christmas

Northwich Railway Station
Saturday 20 September
10.30am - Free

During September, Theatre in the Quarter will embark on a journey around the railway stations of Cheshire to present Over by Christmas, a choral commemoration of the departure of Cheshire’s soldiers to the Western Front in Autumn 2014.

Featuring well-loved songs of the period, Over by Christmas captures the spirit of optimism and patriotism of those leaving their loved ones, perhaps never to see them again.

A community choir of ‘soldiers’, ‘nurses’ and their families will recreate this poignant and historic moment, accompanied by live musicians.

Watch a trailer here.

A Call to Arms by Alan Lowe tells the story of the first 6 months of WW1, as told through the local Northwich newspapers - details of the book here.