Friday, 14 February 2014

Art for All

A visit to Manchester earlier this week and I stumbled upon a delightful little exhibition at Manchester Art Gallery. The exhibition, Art For All shows a small portion of works collected by philanthropist Thomas Horsfall (1844-1932), a pioneer of art gallery education from Manchester. He created a vast collection to found Manchester Art Museum, which he set up in 1884. Designed to expose the working class people of Manchester to the beauty of nature Horsfall was a passionate advocate of art as a means educating and enriching everyday life.
"...we are all of us living under conditions which make a strong love of beauty very rare." Thomas Horsfall, The Study of Beauty 1883
The exhibition was co-curated by children from a local school, complete with their own imaginative observations on the artworks selected. I found the exhibition really quite moving and inspirational, perhaps because of my own experiences of teaching.

 "If we have a strong love of beauty, the most beautiful things we see become part of ourselves." Thomas Horsfall, The Study of Beauty, 1883 

I love this photograph (above) of the Nature Study Room at the Art Museum, complete with aviary. What a wonderful setting for teaching drawing.


  1. And what wonderful quotations, too.
    Many thanks for this glimpse.

  2. I feel a trip to the gallery coming on ... we'll be in Manchester in March and with an afternoon to spare. Thanks for the link Hannah, this one had passed me by :)



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