John Ruskin’s Bicentenary year

In 2019, Brantwood celebrated the bicentenary of Ruskin’s birth with an event calendar full of wonder, including the celebration of Ruskin’s influence on the Japanese Arts and Crafts movement, stimulated by Ruskin’s writings and the impact made on the figure who galvanised Japanese craftsmen and patrons, intellectuals and retailers into creating the Mingei craft movement; Yanagi Soetsu (1889-1961). In May, the Japanese Urasenke foundation visited Brantwood to conduct a Japanese Tea Ceremony as part of a programme which  included a display of pots from the Mingei (folk crafts) tradition and its Ruskin connections featuring work by Ogata Kenzan, Shoji Hamada, Bernard Leech, Tomoo Hamada, Edward Hughes and Martin Miles Moore, with calligraphy by Mitsuko Takahashi.

Tomoo Hamada, potter opened the show with a talk about his grandfather, renowned potter Shoji Hamada.

Alongside this, dance performances took place by Cumbria Youth Dance Company, referencing elements of two of Ruskin’s diverse passions – love of the mountains and social justice.


Events are also being held around the world throughout the year. Brantwood along with Lancaster University and the Guild of St George have funded providing information about exhibitions, lectures, conferences, community projects and other events taking place in the UK and internationally throughout the year in celebration and acknowledgement of the lasting impact of this unique 19th century polymath.

Brantwood Exhibition & Events

Full details of exhibitions, events as well as talks and courses can be found in the what’s on section of our website

Fells, Lakes and Waterfalls by Chris Mouncey

Exhibition of Watercolours and mixed media   Personal Statement Over the thirty years or so that I have been living in the Pennines and painting professionally I have had time to explore the effects of light and weather on my surroundings. For this, watercolour seems to me the perfect medium.  My paintings are a response to […]

Herbal Chronicles

An exhibition of watercolours by Sally Bamber with a book of healing herb stories from the hedgerow by Medical Herbalist Sarah Atkinson Local artist Sally Bamber returns to Brantwood with another exhibition of her beautiful watercolour wildflowers in this collaboration with Sarah Atkinson.  Between them they have created a unique insight into the world of […]

The Mind Has Mountains – An Installation by Carol Wyss

For her upcoming exhibition at Brantwood, visual artist Carol Wyss is creating two site specific art installations. THE MIND HAS MOUNTAINS is an immersive installation for Brantwood’s Blue Gallery. The visitor entering the gallery will be surrounded by a room filling vista made up of large unframed etchings extending from floor to ceiling. These are […]

‘Ruskin’s Reverie’ by Kate Bentley S.W.A.

Kate’s exhibition is the culmination of a 19 month long residency at Brantwood. After Kate commenced her residency in Sept 2018 she has focused solely on its influences. Kate’s reasons behind applying for the residency were to enable her to move away from strong landscape influences in her paintings and to experiment with contemporary media, […]

The Further Adventures of Doctor Dolittle

OPEN AIR THEATRE BY TOURING COMPANY ILLYRIA Illyria return to Brantwood to perform Hugh Lofting’s children’s classic. Following the phenomenal success of 2018’s tour of The Adventures of Doctor Dolittle, we’re delving back into Hugh Lofting’s amazing stories to bring you a brand-new musical adaptation of the Doctor’s FURTHER adventures with Jip the Dog, Dab […]

The Treasury

The John Ruskin Mineral Collection. A new dedicated exhibition exploring Ruskin’s fascination with mountains, minerals and the world of geology.

Bloke’s Progress

We have been so proud to announce the arrival of our new fab comic Bloke’s Progress, the combined version of three fabulous comics written by Kevin Jackson and illustrated by Hunt Emerson.   Both attended the Lakes International Comic Art Festival in October (with, of course, Bloke’s Progress). During the Festival, it was announced that Hunt Emerson was […]

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