The Arborealists – trees in contemporary art at St Barbe Museum & Art Gallery, Lymington

The Arborealists – trees in contemporary art exhibition
St Barbe Museum & Art Gallery, Lymington 23rd April – 3rd June 2016

The Arborealists, a major new exhibition at St Barbe Museum & Art Gallery, Lymington will showcase works by 35 contemporary artists on the common theme of trees. Although united in their subject, they use an incredibly varied set of working practices. The exhibition opens on Saturday 23rd April and runs until Saturday, 3rd June 2016.

In 2013, St Barbe Museum & Art Gallery mounted a successful two-part exhibition Under the Greenwood – Picturing the British Tree; the second exhibition featured contemporary artists’ responses to the subject. Such was the impact of this show, and the spirit of camaraderie engendered in a truly diverse group of artists, that they took on a more permanent identity as the Arborealists.

The artists have joined together for exhibitions in galleries across the south and are now coming to St Barbe Museum and Art Gallery in April. Their artworks are at turns dramatic and contemplative, demonstrating that trees still have relevance in contemporary art and retain the power to move us all as a vital element in our landscape and sense of national identity.

Those exhibiting include Jemma Appleby, Mary Anne Aytoun-Ellis, Jo Barry, Guillaume Brandy and Francis Dalschaert, Tim Craven, Michelle Dovey, Dan Hays, Ffiona Lewis, Fiona McIntyre, Wladyslaw Mirecki, Michael Porter, Howard Phipps and Celia de Serra.

Trees provide a wonderfully versatile subject for artists, not only in terms of the incredible diversity of form, character and colour they provide, whether individually or collectively, but also in terms of the wealth of association, myth, folklore, religious and symbolic significance, which they have come to embody. In Britain they have inspired artists from Gainsborough and Constable through to Paul Nash, the Neo-Romantics and the Ruralists.

The Arborealists at St Barbe Museum & Art Gallery will be open Monday-Saturday, 10am-4pm. Tickets, which include entry into the museum, cost £6 for adults, £5 for senior citizens and students, £3 for children aged 5-15 years and £12 for a family of two adults and up to four children (including a voluntary gift aid donation); under fives are admitted free of charge. For details visit www.stbarbe-museum.org.uk or telephone 01590 676969.

Press release (pdf)