The Bowes Museum

The Bowes Museum
Barnard Castle
Durham
DL12 8NP
England

Website

www.thebowesmuseum.org.uk

E-mail

info@thebowesmuseum.org.uk

Telephone

01833 690606

Fax

01833 637163

All information is drawn from or provided by the venues themselves and every effort is made to ensure it is correct. Please remember to double check opening hours with the venue concerned before making a special visit.
Bowes Museum
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Founded over 100 years ago, by John and Joséphine Bowes, the magnificent building contains the greatest collection of European fine and decorative arts in the North of England.

Venue Type:

Museum

Opening hours

Open Daily 10.00 - 5.00

Closed only 25 & 26 Dec & 1 Jan

Admission charges

Adults: £9.50
Concessions (Disabled, over 60s, students, unwaged): £8.50, 6 month pass £14.00, students £5.50
Under 16s, disabled carers, tour guides and accompanying coach drivers: FREE
Groups of 12 or more receive a discount on the normal admission price.
Photography and Video Permit: £3.00
FREE parking and admission to grounds

Proof of status is required for free and discounted tickets.

Discounts

  • Museums Association
  • International Council of Museums
  • English Heritage

Additional info

The Museum's reference library is staffed by the Friends of The Bowes Museum. It is open Tuesday,Wednesday and Thursday By appointment only. Please ring for details.

The Friends of The Bowes Museum offer free guided tours of the galleries. For more information, or to pre-book your place please contact us.

Handling Sessions may be arranged in advance.

The entire collection of the Bowes Museum is a Designated Collection of national importance.

This collection contains paintings, ceramics, items of woodwork, objects d’art and textiles. Before Josephine’s death in 1874, John Bowes and his French wife had amassed some 15,000 objects of all types of European fine and decorative arts from the period 1400-1870. The bills for this collecting activity survive in the museum’s archive. Acquisitions made more recently such as the Enid Goldblatt collection of porcelain, have reinforced the continental feel of the museum.

The Museum holds an outstanding collection of European fine and decorative arts of the period 1400-1875, specialising in French and Spanish paintings. There is an extensive collection of English furniture, European ceramics and textiles, as well as archaeological material and archives from County Durham and social history from Teesdale.

Items from this collection

Collection details

Weapons and War, Toys and Hobbies, Social History, Religion, Photography, Personalities, Natural Sciences, Music, Literature, Fine Art, Decorative and Applied Art, Costume and Textiles, Coins and Medals, Archives, Archaeology

Key artists and exhibits

  • Silver Swan
  • James Cox
  • Pease Train
  • Clockwork Toys
  • Canaletto
  • El Greco
  • Goya
  • Tiepolo
  • Boucher
  • Revolving Band Clock
  • Giordano
  • Turner
  • Japanese Tiger
  • Portrait of Josephine Bowes
  • Portrait of John Bowes
  • Paintings by Josephine Bowes
  • Designated Collection
Exhibition details are listed below, you may need to scroll down to see them all.
Dolls house and handling toys

Dolls, Bears, Robots

  • 29 June 2013 — 24 July 2015 *on now

Appealing to families, this extension to the current toy display creates a specific Children's Room in the Museum's Streatlam Galleries. More dolls and teddy bears from the collection are on show, together with long term loans of toys from our partner museum, Beamish. Also included is a display of vintage robots and mechanical toys

Suitable for

  • Any age
photograph of sculpture of woman with jug

Julian Opie: Collected Works

  • 4 October 2014 — 5 January 2015 *on now

Julian Opie Collected Works continues a series of exhibitions at the Holburne
exploring artists and their collections.

One of this country’s most important and successful contemporary artists this will be Opie’s first one person exhibition in the UK for over 10 years. Uniquely it will bring together his own works – including new and unseen works – with pieces from his private art collection and explore the links and resonances between the two.

The exhibition, which will be shown at the Holburne before travelling to The Bowes Museum, will also include large scale external sculpture in the gardens of the two
museums and be accompanied by a publication including an interview with the artist.

Admission

Dates TBC.

painting of the immaculate conception of the virgin

Six Masterpieces of the Spanish Golden Age: Paintings from Madrid, London and York

  • 11 October 2014 — 1 February 2015 *on now

An exhibition curated by Spanish art specialist Veronique Powell, former Chief Curator and senior lecturer at the Sorbonne in Paris, celebrating the conservation of an important painting not seen publicly for over half a century.

The Last Communion of Saint Raymond Nonnatus forms the centrepiece of the show, which includes significant loans from the Museo del Prado in Madrid and the National Gallery in London. The exhibition investigates the painting’s creator, Francisco Pacheco (1564-1654) and the Sevillian School of painting, exploring his role as the master of the second generation of painters in Seville during that period.

The painting is one of six executed by Pacheco for the Merced Calzada Convent in Seville, now the Museo de Bellas Artes. It is a work of great significance to the history of Spanish painting, an area in which The Bowes Museum excels; its collection boasts 76 works by Spanish artists, making it the finest venue in the UK to explore the genre after the National Gallery.

Suitable for

  • Family friendly

Admission

£9.50 Adults
£8.50 Concessions
£5.00 Students (on production of Student Card)
£14.00 6 Month Admission Pass

Website

http://www.thebowesmuseum.org.uk/VisitUs/WhatsOn/SixMasterpiecesoftheSpanishGoldenAge.aspx

photograph of haute couture outfit by Thierry Mugler

Birds of Paradise - Plumes & Feathers In Fashion

  • 25 October 2014 — 19 April 2015 *on now

A dramatic and striking new exhibition opens at The Bowes Museum’s award winning Fashion & Textile Gallery in October; its only UK venue.

Birds of Paradise – Plumes and Feathers in Fashion is a tribute to the elegance of feathers used in the fashion industry past and present, featuring extravagant catwalk creations from British, Belgian, French and Italian designers including Alexander McQueen, Dries Van Noten, Jean Paul Gaultier, Thierry Mugler, Balenciaga, Prada and Gucci.

The exhibition features on the ancient profession of plumassier in cooperation with the Parisian Maison Lemarié, one of the last traditional feather studios. This fashion house has specialised in processing plumes, primarily for French haute couture, since 1880. Maison Lemarié is making samples of its beautiful feather work especially for this exhibition.

Suitable for

  • Family friendly

Admission

£9.50 Adults
£8.50 Concessions
£5.00 Students (on production of Student Card)
£14.00 6 Month Admission Pass

Website

http://www.thebowesmuseum.org.uk/VisitUs/WhatsOn/BirdsOfParadisePlumesFeathersInFashion.aspx

Resources listed here may include websites, bookable tours and workshops, books, loan boxes and more. You may need to scroll down or click on headers to see them all.

The Bowes

After School Club

http://www.thebowesmuseum.org.uk/learning/after%20school/

The Bowes Museum’s After School Club is for children aged 7-12 years and meets at 15.45 every Wednesday during term time. They explore different parts of the Museum’s amazing collections through hands-on arts activities with recent topics including optical art experiments, Art Nouveau glass inspired vessels and even a performance of a Mummer’s Play.
Being a member of the After School Club means that you get to decide on the project focus – be it clay containers, printing patterns or Modroc models, everyone is given the opportunity to vote for their favourite choice. It’s a great way to meet new friends, learn new skills and get your creative juices flowing!

How to obtain

If you are interested in joining The Bowes Museum’s After School Club, please contact the Education Team on 01833 694602, education@thebowesmuseum.org.uk.

Portraits and Portraiture

How to obtain

Visit The Museums Network website www.museumnetworkuk.org which includes The Bowes Museum, for downloadable resources and games.

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