Minister for Culture and Sport, John Griffiths AM formally opened an exhibition of world-renowned artworks at Abergavenny Museum last week (Thursday 31st July) before an appreciative gathering who clearly relished the opportunity to view such a highly regarded collection.
The exhibition, featuring paintings by JMW Turner, John Craxton, John Piper, Eric Ravilious, David Jones, John Sell Cotman, Edward Dayes, and Michael ‘Angelo’ Rooker is inspired by Monmouthshire’s historic Llanthony Priory and runs until September 28th. Other artefacts associated with the priory are featured.
The exhibition, entitled “Sites of Inspiration” is funded by the Heritage Lottery Fund and the Welsh Government’s Sharing Treasures scheme which enables local museums to display objects from national institutions. Admission is free.
As a sacred site and an impressive monument Llanthony Priory has inspired generations to create works of art and literature that have enthralled the world. The exhibition captures the growth and flowering of Britain’s golden age of watercolour and also illustrates the processes employed by the artists.
This was the Minister’s second visit to Monmouthshire within a week. He also opened a similar exhibition at Chepstow Museum on Monday, July 28th featuring works inspired by Tintern Abbey.
He said: “I am delighted with the results of this Welsh Government and Heritage Lottery Fund investment. This Sharing Treasures grant has enabled Monmouthshire Museums Service to raise gallery standards in two local museums. National Institutions can now lend to Chepstow and Abergavenny museums with confidence and these local museums continue to deliver high quality exhibitions that raise the profile of heritage and provide local people with access to collections of national importance”.
County Councillor Bob Greenland, Monmouthshire’s cabinet member for Innovation, Enterprise and Leisure added: “We’re very grateful to be able to exhibit these works in the areas that inspired them thanks to the Sharing Treasures grant scheme. Monmouthshire’s museum service is renowned for the quality of its displays and these paintings and artworks are of world class quality. We extend a warm welcome to the exhibitions and suggest that visitors also explore the Llanthony and Tintern areas to witness what inspired the artists originally”.