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Art criticism in the Pre-Raphaelite era

26 February 2016 by Lisa

Ann bukantas pre-raphs

Ann Bukantas being interviewed about ‘Pre-Raphaelites: Beauty and Rebellion’ for BBC North West Tonight.

Our Pre-Raphaelites exhibition seems to have got journalists very excited. We’ve seen national previews, a four-star review in the Liverpool Echo and a flame-haired beauty adorning the cover of The Big Issue North!

While Pre-Raphaelite art is very popular today, it was not always warmly received by the media of its time, with the movement’s bold and imaginative work often regarded as challenging or outrageous.

‘They were the punk rockers of their day – subversive, rule-breaking, dangerous’ – Mark Brown, The Guardian, 2016

Here our curator, Ann Bukantas, looks at some of the art critics and publications that surrounded the Pre-Raphaelite movement: Read more…

Pride and Prejudice project – first objects revealed!

24 February 2016 by Kay

feather-boas300Today, in celebration of Lesbian Gay Bisexual Transgender (LGBT) History Month, we are excited to launch our online collections which showcase items with LGBT connections, from across our fine and decorative art, Art Galleries and Museum of Liverpool collections.

The items are wide ranging – from fun feather boas from Garlands nightclub to magnificent Renaissance artworks. They form just a small selection of the first set of items we have discovered as part of the Pride and Prejudice project. This two year funded project involves unearthing, researching and publishing objects which relate to LGBT history and culture. Read more…

Our top six gifts for Pre-Raphaelite fans

11 February 2016 by Lisa

william-morris-ties

We’ve found that fans of the Pre-Raphaelite movement are some of the most passionate art lovers out there!

Whether you’re a Pre-Raphaelite buff yourself or you know someone who loves all things Rossetti,  we have plenty to browse in our Pre-Raphaelites online shop. Read more…

The Pre-Raphaelites, definitely beautiful and most certainly rebellious!

4 February 2016 by Ann

The English Boy, 1860, Ford Madox Brown © Manchester City Galleries

The English Boy, 1860, Ford Madox Brown © Manchester City Galleries

The countdown has begun to the opening of our breath-taking exhibition Pre-Raphaelites: Beauty and Rebellion on 12 February at the Walker Art Gallery. Installation of the works is underway and the excitement is building..

Among the 120 paintings to be displayed are familiar faces including Manchester Art Gallery’s The English Boy and Rossetti’s glorious Monna Vanna from the collection at Tate.  There’s also wonderful pictures by local artists who were influenced by the Pre-Raphaelite ideals. Burd Helen by William L. Windus (pictured below) and painted in 1856, is a lovely example, and was described by John Ruskin as “a great Pre-Raphaelite painting”, he went on to state it was “thoughtful and intense to the highest imaginative power”. Read more…

Artist, Rae Hicks: “…it gave me a huge boost of confidence and validation”

2 February 2016 by Lisa

Artists clapping at a private view

From left to right: Angela Samata (John Moores Painting Prize) and artists Rose Wylie, Rae Hicks, Mandy Payne, Juliette Losque and Alessandro Raho.

A prize-winner at the John Moores Painting Prize in 2014, artist Rae Hicks has been speaking to us about his experience of being part of the John Moores and the effect it has had on his career:  Read more…

Exhibitions to beat the winter blues

7 January 2016 by Laura

Painting of woman

In The Grass, Arthur Hughes © Museums Sheffield. From the ‘Pre-Raphaelites: Beauty and Rebellion’ exhibition.

January blues seem to be an inevitable come down after the festive season. Back to work, feeling broke and all those resolutions which seemed such a good idea at the time and are now just making you feel worse about yourself as you struggle to achieve them.

It’s this time of the year when you need to look forward and plan ahead and luckily we have a bumper year of exhibitions at National Museums Liverpool which might go some way to cheer you up! Read more…

A year in blogs – our top 5 stories from 2015!

31 December 2015 by Lisa

Mother and sons with Jubilee decorations

Silver Jubilee street party, June 1977, Old Swan, Liverpool

As 2015 draws to a close, we’re looking back on some of the most popular stories from the blog this year. We began the year by revealing how the Walker Art Gallery’s Henry VIII portrait was used as inspiration for the costumes in BBC drama series, ‘Wolf Hall’ – and we ended the year with our celebrations at World Museum for the amazing blast off of Tim Peake!

But which are the stories that have captured your imagination this year? Here are are the top five stories from our blog that you’ve been enjoying the most in 2015… *drum roll please* Read more…

John Moores 2016 – meeting the jury

8 December 2015 by Lisa

In Gillian Carnegie's studio.

In Gillian Carnegie’s studio.

We’ve had more than 2,500 entries into the John Moores Painting Prize this year and we’re now looking forward to the first stage of judging for this £25,000 prize. Nicola from the John Moores team went down to London last week to meet some of the jury and here’s what she got up to…  Read more…

Paul Scott’s ceramics inspired by Liverpool’s past

19 November 2015 by Felicity

Image of Toxteth Park, Herculaneum, and Liver Birds (2014) by Paul Scott

Toxteth Park, Herculaneum, and Liver Birds (2014) by Paul Scott

The Walker Art Gallery’s Craft and Design Gallery is an impressive place to be, with ceramics, glass, metalwork, jewellery, furniture and even musical instruments on display; together covering some three hundred years of design history.

No wonder then, that internationally-renowned ceramic artist Paul Scott found ample inspiration from these collections when he visited! So much so, that it inspired him to create a piece that is on show until 28 March 2016 as part of a display in room 13 here at the Walker. Read more…

6 Christmas gifts you’ll want on your list

13 November 2015 by Lisa

christmas-felt-wreath-decorationsStarted your feverish browsing for Christmas gift ideas? Fear not, yule* have no problems finding the perfect gift in our online shop, with prices to suit all budgets! We’ve picked our top 6 gifts to get you started…

*see what we did there?  Read more…


About our blog

Welcome to the National Museums Liverpool blog! Written by our staff and volunteers, we’ll give you a peek behind the scenes of our museums and galleries.

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We try to ensure that the information provided on our blog is accurate and that appropriate permissions to use images have been sought. The opinions in each blog are very much those of the individuals writing.