Millennium Gallery’s newest exhibition ‘ Dutch flowers’

Teeming with beauty, colour and life, the Millennium Gallery is bringing 10 of the finest examples of Dutch Flower Paintings to Sheffield for the first time. These paintings combine meticulous technique and rich detail with abundant, often fantastical compositions. The Millennium Gallery will be filled with floral art of all varieties, with Ambrosius Bosschaert the Elder, Rachel Ruysch, Jan van Huysum and more being at the heart of this dazzling exhibition. 

While flowers have been making a recurring appearance in art for centuries it was the Dutch who were the first to exclusively depict floral compositions at the start of the 17th century. The painting started the century with being flat and symmetrical arrangements, before becoming more relaxed and asymmetrical to create a sense of depth. By the end of the 18th century, flower paintings were considered to be more  decorative and featured lighter palettes to suit a more ‘modern’ audience. 

The exhibition not only features the work of talents like Ambrosius Bosschaert the Ender but also our own Sheffield based talent Kedisha Coakley who has been specially commissioned by the gallery. Her work aims to explore the relationship between the trade in fruit, seeds and flowers and the empire. Her work revises traditional interpretations, encouraging the views to reconsider social class and historical narratives  from a different perspective. 

The exhibition will also include a series of modern and contemporary artworks from the Jerwood collection. These pieces will also be accompanied by a range of artwork from Sheffield’s own collection. These pieces include ceramics and a display of historical botanical studies from the  Guild of St George’s Ruskin Collection. 

There will also be a range of interactive opportunities for all ages, including drawing activities inspired by the works on display and a floral themed family trail. 

The entry to the exhibition is free and running between Thursday 22nd June to Sunday 17th September.

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