Exhibition Archive

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Titian – Diana and Actaeon:

06/08/2010 – 05/09/2010

The McManus is delighted to host Titian's Diana and Actaeon on its special Scottish tour, marking the first anniversary of the nation's acquisition of this magnificent painting.

Titian is one of the most influential artists of all time. His exceptional handling of paint, bold use of colour and original approach to subject matter had a huge impact on generations of painters.

This is a unique opportunity to see this masterpiece of European painting in Dundee. It is part of the National Galleries of Scotland's commitment to bring great art to as many people as possible across the country.

Old Master Drawings from the Collection of Dundee Art Galleries and Museums:

04/8/2012 – 16/9/2012

This exhibition coincided with the exhibition of drawings by Leonardo da Vinci to celebrate the Queen's Diamond Jubilee, The McManus will showcase Old Master Drawings from the Collection of Dundee Art Galleries and Museums.

This exhibition featured the works of renowned artists including Ludovico Carracci, Carlo Maratta and Jacopo Amigoni, the exhibition explores the reasons for producing drawings and the techniques involved.

Kept in storage for their preservation, these fragile works on paper are rarely displayed. This is their first showing for several years and with new research on many of the drawings, this is indeed an exhibition of discovery.

Ten Drawings by Leonardo da Vinci: A Diamond Jubilee Celebration from The Royal Collection

31/8/2012 – 4/11/2012

The McManus: Dundee’s Art Gallery and Museum was the only Scottish venue to host an exhibition of ten of Leonardo da Vinci’s finest drawings from the Royal Collection. The exhibition formed part of the celebrations for the Diamond Jubilee of Her Majesty The Queen in 2012.

In these remarkable works visitors were able to marvel at the extraordinary scope of Leonardo’s interests – ranging from hydraulics and engineering to anatomy and mapmaking – and his use of different media – pen and ink, red and black chalks, and metalpoint.

This was not only a unique opportunity to see some of the most fascinating and accomplished drawings ever produced, but also a chance to engage at first hand with one of the greatest minds of all time.

Selling Dreams: One Hundred Years of Fashion Photography

28/9/2012 – 6/1/2013

The glamour, mystery and drama of some of the world's most striking fashion photographs were displayed in Dundee in a touring exhibition organised by the Victoria and Albert Museum, London.

Selling Dreams: One Hundred Years of Fashion Photography was the second in a series of exhibitions held at The McManus: Dundee's Art Gallery & Museum leading up to the opening of the V&A at Dundee. The exhibition featured works by giants of twentieth century photography including Edward Steichen, Irving Penn, Richard Avedon, Helmut Newton and David Bailey, alongside contemporary images by Corinne Day, Rankin, Tim Walker and Steven Meisel.

The Victoria and Albert Museum is home to the UK's National Collection of the Art of Photography. Selling Dreams is drawn from this collection and is the first Victoria and Albert Museum's touring exhibition to explore the work of international fashion photographers from the earliest years of the twentieth century to the present day.

Modern Masters in Print:

23/8/2013 – 17/11/2013

Prints by four of the 20th Century’s greatest artists – Henri Matisse, Pablo Picasso, Salvador Dalí, and Andy Warhol were on display in a touring exhibition organised by the Victoria and Albert Museum, London.

Modern Masters in Print was part of a series of exhibitions held at The McManus: Dundee’s Art Gallery and Museum in the lead up to the opening of V&A at Dundee. This exhibition offered visitors a rare opportunity to see a collection of more than 50 artworks by these artists on display in Scotland and highlighted the different ways they each used the medium of print. Together, these four artists spanned a 75-year period that saw the birth of the modern age and they employed a wide range of techniques; their work represents one of the most creative and diverse periods of printmaking in the history of western art.

For Matisse and Picasso, printmaking was one of many artistic media they employed, and one which they used to explore themes from other areas of their work. For Dalí, printmaking was an exercise in experimentation, through which he developed many imaginative new processes. Warhol’s prints were his primary means of expression and central to his work. His screen-prints based on mass-produced images challenged the concept of the ‘original’ print.

The exhibition was one of a series of events in Dundee that coincided with the inaugural Print Festival Scotland and the prestigious international academic print conference ‘Impact 8’ which is being hosted by the University of Dundee.

Sense of Place:

13/12/2013 – 07/02/2014

Sense of Place is a multi-disciplinary exhibition and digital gallery trail curated by The McManus Youth Action Group; the display showcases artwork made by young people and highlights the objects from the museum collection that inspired their creative responses.

The exhibition forms part of a national project led by National Museums Scotland called Scotland Creates. The Sense of Place exhibition is the outcome of the Dundee strand of this project and will provide visitors with an exciting opportunity to navigate the museum and view films, creative writing, printmaking and photography that evokes memories and connections, of the young people and their lives, in the city.

Safe Havens – Harbour Scenes from the Orchar Collection:

15/11/2013 – 12/01/2014

A celebration of coastal life will be displayed in a stunning exhibition of paintings and prints selected from the collection of James Guthrie Orchar. This reflective exhibition organised by The McManus: Dundee’s Art Gallery and Museum, will explore the way harbours were depicted frequently as a subject matter in 19th Century art.

James Guthrie Orchar (1823–1898) was a successful businessman, Provost of Broughty Ferry (1886–1898) and an art collector. Orchar’s extensive art collection may have been rivalled by many wealthy merchants in his time; however the importance of the Orchar Collection has grown significantly in recent years, as it is the only one to survive intact. This rare Collection offers a fascinating insight into one man’s personal taste in art.

The full Collection includes over 400 oils, works on paper and sculptures; the topics depicted reveal both the taste of wealthy Victorians and contemporary art of the period. The repeated portrayal of harbours in the Collection indicates that both artists and art patrons from this period found the life existing around the sea walls to be an enticing and worthy subject.

Re:new: Contemporary Art from the Permanent Collection

23/08/2013 – Spring 2014

This exhibition offered opportunities to engage with a selection of contemporary work from both Scottish and European artists that were selected from Dundee Art Galleries and Museums most recent art acquisitions.

Re:new was split up into two distinct groups, the first comprised of a series of unusual visual perspectives of Dundee. This collection spanned from the monumental response to Dundee’s Tay Rail Bridge by Catherine Yass, to a collection of Ruth Ewan’s striking slogans. These works are part of a permanent legacy of artworks originally commissioned by Dundee Contemporary Arts.

The second group focused on works loosely inspired by the natural world and alternated between the meaningful sculptures of Graham Fagen’s hybrid tea rose to the surreal vision of John Stezaker’s Bird Mask II. This group of works was acquired primarily through the National Collecting Scheme for Scotland.

The White Whale

June 2014 – August 2014

An immersive sculptural installation by artist Nick Evans was displayed at The McManus: Dundee’s Art Gallery and Museum from June 2014, as part of GENERATION a nationwide series of exhibitions that explore the remarkable development of contemporary art in Scotland over the last 25 years.

The White Whale is the latest solo exhibition by Nick Evans. Known for his organically shaped white plaster sculptures, this work is inspired by the Gothic architecture of The McManus and the museum collections within. The interplay between visitor, sculpture, decorative elements and the stunning architecture of the gallery combine to create an immersive artwork.

Evans was born in Mufulira in Zambia, brought up in Somerset and now lives and works in Glasgow. This background has given him an international outlook which informs his work. Evans is fascinated by the art and artefacts of other cultures – particularly studying the various materials used and methods of construction. From these original sources and his knowledge of European art history, he creates his distinctive and original sculptural forms.

Jeepers Creepers: The works of Eduardo Paolozzi from Dundee Collections

13/09/2014 – 02/11/2014

A selection of work by Eduardo Paolozzi, arguably one of the most inventive artists of the 20th Century, was on display in a temporary exhibition at The McManus: Dundee’s Art Gallery and Museum.

This exhibition formed following repeated requests by regular visitors to see Paolozzi’s Ettso, a large scale sculpture that is held within the Dundee Collections and was a popular element of the permanent display prior to the redevelopment of The McManus. Central to this display was the major work Jeepers Creepers which Paolozzi gave to the City in 1972. These two works are augmented by prints from the City of Dundee and the University of Dundee's collections, thus bringing all Paolozzi's works in Dundee collections together for the first time.

Paolozzi’s work spans a huge range of media and subject matter, driven by his insatiable curiosity and imagination. He developed a series of distinct styles in a range of media – ultimately becoming best known as a sculptor and printmaker. His early exposure to Surrealism was an enduring influence and his appropriation and reworking of found images and forms can be credited, in part, to their passion for collage. He had a fascination with science, technology and popular culture creating works were the antithesis of the calm, ordered minimalism that was prevalent in British art of the time.

A World to Win: Posters of Protest and Revolution

13/12/2014 – 04/1/2015

Over 70 original posters (from print collectives, celebrated artists, graphic designers and anonymous poster-makers), were displayed in a stimulating exhibition that identified how posters have been used to mobilise, educate and organise many varied causes and campaigns around the world. Ranging from the early 20th century right up to examples from recent protests in Turkey, Ukraine and Egypt, the posters brought together highly creative graphic design and photography with slogans which span international boundaries and languages.

A World to Win: Posters of Protest and Revolution was the fourth in the series of partnership projects with The McManus: Dundee’s Art Gallery & Museum presenting touring exhibitions from the Victoria & Albert Museum, London as part of the pre-opening programme of exhibitions for V&A Museum of Design Dundee.

The display looked at a century of posters agitating for political action, drawn primarily from the Victoria & Albert Museum’s outstanding poster collection, including new acquisitions gathered from recent outbursts of protests and loans of rare posters from the Northern Ireland Political Collection held at the Linden Hall Library in Belfast. The posters have been produced under many different conditions: from Apartheid to the Vietnam War and British miners’ strikes. The display brought together some of the most potent, and in many cases controversial, images used to declare opposition to major events and campaigns throughout the world. Together they demonstrated the extraordinary power a poster can have and how different graphic strategies and visual vocabularies of protest emerge and evolve. Exhibition organised by the Victoria & Albert Museum, London.

A Silvered Light – Scottish Art Photography from the City’s Permanent Collection

06/12/2013 – 04/1/2015

This exhibition showcased Scottish art photography selected from Dundee City’s permanent collection. Images were displayed from over 50 photographers, collected in the 28 years following the purchase of two important early photographs by Thomas Joshua Cooper in 1985. Dundee was the first local authority to collect fine art photography and this has resulted in a significant collection representing many of the major Scottish-based photographers of the late twentieth century.

Scotland has had a leading role in the development of photography – indeed it is claimed that photography is the only art form that Scots have practiced to the highest standard from the time of its invention. This exhibition allowed visitors to explore the different ways in which the selected artists used the medium of photography in fine art and included work from Calum Colvin, Oscar Marzaroli, Maud Sulter, Emma Hamilton, Patricia MacDonald and David Williams.

Through Smoke & Flame: WW1 Propaganda Posters

22/11/2014 – 25/01/2015

In commemoration of World War I, the annual Winter Works on Paper was drawn from the City’s collection of sketches, posters and prints by artist Frank Brangwyn (1867–1956). Never an official war artist, Brangwyn nevertheless created over eighty striking posters for the British Government, national newspapers, European charities and the US Navy.

This display, which featured a selection of these works, explored the importance of the poster in war-time Britain. Today posters continue to play a key role in encouraging support for or against political causes. From 1914–18 however, they were essential for justifying the conflict, encouraging recruitment, seeking charitable donations and promoting war-time thrift. The most successful posters were those that played on the viewer’s feelings. Frank Brangwyn, an artist renowned for capturing human emotion, was therefore an ideal candidate for the job.

Roman Empire: Power & People – A British Museum Tour

24/01/2015 – 10/05/2015

The McManus was this touring exhibition’s only Scottish venue!

This exhibition brought together over 160 stunning pieces from the British Museum, to explore the story of one of the most powerful empires the world has ever seen. Highlights included sculpture from the villas of the Emperors Tiberius and Hadrian, coins from the famous Hoxne treasure, beautiful jewellery and even near-perfectly preserved children’s clothing from Roman Egypt.

Roman Empire: Power and People explored the wealth, power and organisation of the Empire, and also how the Romans viewed their provinces and other peoples. Religious, military and personal objects gave an insight into the lives of people across the Empire, from northern Britain to Egypt and the Middle East. These fascinating objects showed how the influences of many people and places that the Romans came into contact with, were absorbed and adapted into the Empire.

Alongside the exhibition, visitors had the opportunity see objects from Dundee’s Roman collections, as well as objects on loan from the National Museum of Scotland, and Perth & Kinross Museum Service.

An exciting programme of activities and events accompanied the exhibition.

The exhibition was developed in partnership between Bristol Museums, Galleries & Archives and the British Museum, and supported through the generosity of the Dorset Foundation.

Jeepers Creepers: The works of Eduardo Paolozzi from Dundee Collections

30/05/2015 – 19/07/2015

A selection of work by Eduardo Paolozzi, arguably one of the most inventive artists of the 20th Century, returned to display in a temporary exhibition at The McManus: Dundee’s Art Gallery & Museum.

The exhibition was curated following repeated requests to see Paolozzi’s Ettso, a large scale chrome sculpture, which was a popular element of the permanent display prior to the redevelopment of The McManus. Central to this exhibition was the major work Jeepers Creepers which Paolozzi gave to the City in 1972. These two works are augmented by prints from the City of Dundee and the University of Dundee's collections, thus bringing all Paolozzi’s works in Dundee collections together under one roof.

Paolozzi’s work spans a huge range of media and subject matter, driven by his insatiable curiosity and imagination. He developed a series of distinct styles in a range of media – ultimately becoming best known as a sculptor and printmaker. His early exposure to Surrealism was an enduring influence and his appropriation and reworking of found images and forms can be credited, in part, to their passion for collage. He had a fascination with science, technology and popular culture creating works were the antithesis of the calm, ordered minimalism that was prevalent in British art of the time.

Classical Art: The Legacy of The Ancients’

24/01/2015 – 01/11/2015

Classical Art: The Legacy of The Ancients’ illustrated the enduring influence of ancient Greek and Roman culture through paintings, sculpture and ceramics from Dundee’s nationally significant collection of fine art.

The Greeks were the greatest myth-makers of all time. Stories of gods, heroes and men were enacted in plays, depicted in paintings and individual characters sculpted in bronze.

The exhibition included; a red-figure wine bowl dating to 450 BC, a nineteenth century bronze head of Dionysus, a watercolour titled ‘Lonely Torso’ by William McCance and Kate Whiteford’s ‘Votives and Libations’, a contemporary take on classical forms.

Following the successful partnership with the British Museum 'Roman Empire: Power & People exhibition earlier in 2015, this exhibition provided visitors with the opportunity to see local Roman artefacts from the City’s collection. The rare Lorica Scale armour found at Carpow dated to the third century AD, and was the best preserved example from Western Roman Europe to survive. To supplement the display there were archaeological finds from ancient Egypt, which included a terracotta head of Medusa made from mud from the Nile.

Also featured in the exhibition was the 1816 trophy from the Doncaster Gold Cup, one of the oldest established horse races in Britain. This was the first time that the neoclassical-style trophy had been shown with a piece that inspired its creation – a fifth century BC Greek wine vase.

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