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Shakespeare in Art celebrates theatre’s birthday

Other posts by  |  Sheelagh Caygill on Google+ |  January 25, 2012 | 0 Comments
Portia, 1887 by Henry Woods, courtesy of the Laing Art Gallery (Tyne & Wear Archives & Museums)

Portia, 1887 by Henry Woods, courtesy of the Laing Art Gallery (Tyne & Wear Archives & Museums)

Newcastle’s Laing Art Gallery will host an exhibition which explores how Shakespeare has inspired artists for centuries.

The exhibition, which opens on January 28 and runs until April 29, will celebrate the 175th birthday of Newcastle’s Theatre Royal this year and will display paintings, prints and objects from Tyne & Wear Archives & Museums’ collections.

Visitors young and old will recognise characters from Shakespeare’s best-known plays such as Hamlet, Romeo and Juliet, The Merchant of Venice and many more.

Julie Milne, Curator of the Laing Art Gallery, says: “The range of works on display illustrates how artists have been inspired by Shakespeare’s plays. We hope that visitors will enjoy exploring these works and through them the depth and richness of Shakespeare’s work.”

The exhibition will also feature several outstanding Victorian oil paintings and watercolours from the Laing’s collections. Particular highlights include Walter Howell Deverell’s Scene from ‘As You Like It’, and Thomas Francis Dicksee’s beautiful Juliet.

Also on display will be a selection of watercolours from William George Simmonds’ Hamlet series, used to illustrate a 1912 edition of the play.

Many illustrative engravings, which have been newly-conserved, will be on display for the first time in several years, alongside a selection of decorative art and objects inspired by Shakespeare.

The Laing Art Gallery is open Monday to Saturday from 10am to 5pm and Sundays from 2pm to 5pm.  Admission is free.  For more details visit or find the Laing on Facebook , Twitter and Flickr.

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