January 24, 2018

The Graves gallery in Sheffield with unexpected contemporary art @MuseumSheffield

I headed to the third floor of the Graves gallery in Sheffield and stumbled across several galleries of contemporary and modern work that I hadn’t expected to see. I had gone to see the temporary show ‘The Power of the Print: Leonard Beaumont Rediscovered,’ which finishes on 14th September. The blurb says that Mr B was a prolific artist, ‘whose work has rarely received the attention it deserves.’ His line is attractive and free-flowing and there is a vibrancy in some of his works that evokes the excitement of the 1920s. However I think he is on show more because he made the astute decision shortly before his death to gift over 80 works to Sheffield City.

Leonard Beaumont was not the only exhibition on show in the Graves Gallery. If you are in Sheffield then I recommend going up to the third floor (there is a lift) as there is a fairly large collection of art works that are worth a perusal. Until 30th November a selection of black and white photographs are on display in a show entitled ‘On the Face of It: Photographic Portraits from Sheffield’s Collection’. This brings together famous photographers and famous subjects, as when Cecil Beaton snaps Jean Paul Sartre, or Picasso is caught by Brassai. There’s also an image of Marcel Duchamp by Man Ray. In the same room is contemporary art from Marc Quinn, Sam Taylor Wood and others. There is a Damien Hirst Spin painting lent by Jarvis Cocker, next to a piece by Paul Morrison who makes the point ‘You need to know this much – that what it means is what you want it to mean.’

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Next door is is a Richard Long piece, in a gallery that moves swiftly through art history with works from big-hitters such as Peter Blake, Pierre Bonnard and Paul Gauguin.

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LS Lowry is also featured, as is Stanley Spencer and Henry Moore. Charlotte Bell provides an attractive image of a pond at Charleston. If you are in Sheffield do consider a visit to the Graves Museum.

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