Mercer Art Gallery

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The gallery is home to Harrogate's Fine Art Collection. The collection is not on permanent display. Paintings, prints and drawings from it are featured in our lively and diverse exhibition programme throughout the year. Exhibitions include national touring shows as well as work by local artists.

Venue Type:

Gallery

Opening hours

The Mercer Art Gallery is open Tuesday to Saturday 10am-5pm and Sundays 2pm-5pm. We are closed on Mondays unless it is a bank holiday. Between November and March we close at 4pm.

Admission charges

FREE

Over 2000 works of fine art, mainly from the 19th and 20th centuries.

Collection details

Fine Art, Photography

Exhibition details are listed below, you may need to scroll down to see them all.
textile print of people fishing

Sheila Bownas: A Yorkshire Life in Pattern

  • 9 September 2017 — 7 January 2018 *on now

Come and be dazzled by a blaze of colour at the Mercer Art Gallery as we showcase the work of Yorkshire born pattern designer, Sheila Bownas. The work of this reclusive artist and textile designer threatened to fade into obscurity until a chance find in a Yorkshire saleroom led gallery professional Chelsea Cefai on a journey of discovery.

Educated in Skipton, pattern designer Sheila Bownas showed artistic promise from an early age. In 1941 she secured a junior art scholarship to attend Skipton Art College and later gained a county art scholarship to attend the Slade School in London and several of Sheila’s paintings were exhibited at The Royal Academy of Arts. In the early 1950s, her interest was drawn to textile design and Sheila’s natural flair for pattern led to a successful freelance career, supplying bold and colourful designs to the likes of Liberty and Marks and Spencer throughout the 1950s, 60s and 70s. She moved between London and Linton for twelve years, before finally settling in the Dales until her death ten years ago.

Admission

Free admission during gallery opening hours.

landscape painting at Kettleness

Katharine Holmes: In Grandmother's Footsteps

  • 16 September 2017 — 14 January 2018 *on now

Katharine Holmes's grandmother Constance Pearson was an artist, and so was her mother Philippa Holmes. All three generations lived and worked in High Barn Cottage, Malham, in the Yorkshire Dales. For the last two years Katharine has been exploring the places Constance visited, including Cornwall, Malhamdale, Fryup Dale and the Yorkshire Coast, and has been making new landscape paintings of her own. Opening hours are Tuesday-Saturday 10am until 5pm (4pm from November until January), Sunday is 2pm until 5pm (4pm from November). Closed on Mondays, December 23 until 27 and January 1.

Admission

Free admission. Opening hours are Tuesday-Saturday 10am until 5pm (4pm from November until January), Sunday is 2pm until 5pm (4pm from November), closed on Mondays.

Events details are listed below. You may need to scroll down or click on headers to see them all. For events that don't have a specific date see the 'Resources' tab above.
woman drawing at an easel

Life Drawing Workshops

  • 10 November 2017 10:30am-12:30pm
  • 17 November 2017 10:30am-12:30pm
  • 24 November 2017 10:30am-12:30pm
  • 1 December 2017 10:30am-12:30pm

For anyone who wants to develop their drawing skills, these artist-led life drawing sessions are suitable for beginners and up. You will start with a series of short poses to encourage quick mark-making, followed by a long pose for more detailed study. £20 per session which includes refreshments and all materials, booking is essential.

Suitable for

  • Not suitable for children

Admission

£20 per session which includes all materials and refreshments.

different fabrics with Sheila Bownas prints

Sewing Sessions with the Jenni Smith Studio: Tote Bag

  • 22 November 2017 10am-1pm

Textile artist Jenni Smith brings this exciting workshop to the Mercer Art Gallery where you can make a beautiful keepsake with prints from the Sheila Bownas Archive. Carry a little bit of Sheila Bownas with you everywhere with the chance to make this stylish tote bag. No sewing experience needed.

Suitable for

  • Not suitable for children

Admission

£40 per session which includes all materials, use of a sewing machine and refreshments.

Sheila Bownas designed fabrics

Sewing Sessions with the Jenni Smith Studio: Clutch Bag

  • 25 November 2017 1-4pm

Textile artist Jenni Smith brings this exciting workshop to the Mercer Art Gallery where you can make a beautiful keepsake with prints from the Sheila Bownas Archive. Conquer your fear of inserting zips by making a bespoke lined clutch bag using very limited edition Sheila Bownas fabric. Basic sewing knowledge would be useful but not essential.

Suitable for

  • Not suitable for children

Admission

£40 per session which includes all materials, use of a sewing machine and refreshments.

an image of different Sheila Bownas printed fabrics.

Sewing Sessions with the Jenni Smith Studio: Lampshade

  • 23 November 2017 6-9pm

Textile artist Jenni Smith brings this exciting workshop to the Mercer Art Gallery where you can make a beautiful keepsake with prints from the Sheila Bownas Archive. This is a chance to make a covered lampshade for either a hanging or table lamp using very limited edition Sheila Bownas fabric. Suitable for all abilities.

Suitable for

  • Not suitable for children

Admission

£40 per person which includes materials, use of a sewing machine and refreshments.

Photograph of Katharine Holmes painting

Katharine Holmes: In Conversation

  • 6 November 2017 2-3:30pm

Katharine Holmes joins Curator Jane Sellars to explore the new work she has made for her exhibition at the Mercer Art Gallery.

Suitable for

  • Not suitable for children

Admission

£6 per person, booking is required.

selection of art materials

Adult Art Classes - Four week course

  • 10 November 2017 1:30-3:30pm

Join us for this new four week course of art classes at the Mercer Gallery. You will get the opportunity to hone your drawing and observation skills and to try a variety of media and techniques, including pencil, charcoal and pastels, linocut and drypoint printing techniques, paper cutting and collage techniques. Suitable for beginners and more experienced artists.

£40 for the four week course, which includes all materials and refreshments. The dates are 10 November, 17 November, 24 November and 1 December. Booking is essential.

Suitable for

  • Not suitable for children

Admission

£40 for the four week course, which includes all materials and refreshments. The dates for the sessions are 10 November, 17 November, 24 November and 1 December, all 1.30pm until 3.30pm.

Mercer Art Gallery
Swan Road
Harrogate
North Yorkshire
HG1 2SA
England

Website

www.harrogate.gov.uk/musm/Pages/mercerartgallery.aspx

E-mail

museums@harrogate.gov.uk

Telephone

01423 556188

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.
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