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The Twentieth Century was a time of unprecedented freedom of expression in art, where new visual languages broke time honoured-rules. This newfound creative autonomy bought with it a number of movements and groups with varied agendas, and whilst some complimented one another, others pulled in opposite directions. This exhibition tells a vibrant story of modern British art through artworks from Swindon Museum and Art Gallery, from the late 1880s to today.


Accompanying blogposts about the groups and artworks in this exhibition are available through www.swindonmuseumandartgallery.org.uk/artontour.

19 artworks
The Reapers
Photo credit: Swindon Museum and Art Gallery

The Reapers 1896

George Clausen (1852–1944)

Graphite on paper

H 19 x W 27 cm

Swindon Museum and Art Gallery

Marie Hayes
Photo credit: Swindon Museum and Art Gallery

Marie Hayes

Spencer Gore (1878–1914)

Oil on canvas

H 50 x W 30.5 cm

Swindon Museum and Art Gallery

Nude with Poppies
© estate of Vanessa Bell. All rights reserved, DACS 2021. Photo credit: Swindon Museum and Art Gallery

Nude with Poppies 1916

Vanessa Bell (1879–1961)

Oil on canvas

H 23.4 x W 42.4 cm

Swindon Museum and Art Gallery

Study for 'Bank Holiday in the Park'
© estate of John David Roberts. By courtesy of The William Roberts Society. Photo credit: Swindon Museum and Art Gallery

Study for 'Bank Holiday in the Park' 1923

William Patrick Roberts (1895–1980)

Charcoal on paper with green wash, squared up for transfer in red ink

H 25.4 x W 20.3 cm

Swindon Museum and Art Gallery

The South East Corner, Jerusalem
© the estate of David Bomberg. All rights reserved, DACS 2021. Photo credit: Swindon Museum and Art Gallery

The South East Corner, Jerusalem 1926

David Bomberg (1890–1957)

Oil on board

H 55.5 x W 73.2 cm

Swindon Museum and Art Gallery

1933 (composition in black and white)
© Angela Verren Taunt. All rights reserved, DACS 2021. Photo credit: Swindon Museum and Art Gallery

1933 (composition in black and white) 1933

Ben Nicholson (1894–1982)

Oil & gesso on board

H 112 x W 53 cm

Swindon Museum and Art Gallery

The Chinese Bowl
© the artist's estate. Photo credit: Swindon Museum and Art Gallery

The Chinese Bowl 1936

Ivon Hitchens (1893–1979)

Oil on canvas

H 59.5 x W 77 cm

Swindon Museum and Art Gallery

Pistyll Maes-Glasau
© the Piper Estate / DACS 2021. Photo credit: Swindon Museum and Art Gallery

Pistyll Maes-Glasau 1940

John Piper (1903–1992)

Chalk, charcoal & gouache on paper

H 50.2 x W 37.5 cm

Swindon Museum and Art Gallery

The Mysterious Gift
© Desmond Morris. Photo credit: Swindon Museum and Art Gallery

The Mysterious Gift 1965

Desmond Morris (b.1928)

Oil on canvas

H 99 x W 70.7 cm

Swindon Museum and Art Gallery

Portrait of a Youth (Alfie Bass)
© estate of Sir Lawrence Gowing. Photo credit: Swindon Museum and Art Gallery

Portrait of a Youth (Alfie Bass) 1939–1941

Lawrence Gowing (1918–1991)

Oil on canvas

H 24.5 x W 19 cm

Swindon Museum and Art Gallery

Grey, Red and Black Verticals
© estate of Terry Frost. All rights reserved, DACS 2021. Photo credit: Swindon Museum and Art Gallery

Grey, Red and Black Verticals 1962

Terry Frost (1915–2003)

Oil on canvas

H 101 x W 126.5 cm

Swindon Museum and Art Gallery

Interior Study (a)
© estate of Richard Hamilton. All rights reserved, DACS 2021. Photo credit: Swindon Museum and Art Gallery

Interior Study (a) 1964

Richard Hamilton (1922–2011)

Oil & collage on paper

H 38.1 x W 50.8 cm

Swindon Museum and Art Gallery

R 25
© the artist. Photo credit: Swindon Museum and Art Gallery

R 25 1964

Roger Cook (b.1940)

Acrylic on canvas

H 59 x W 60 cm

Swindon Museum and Art Gallery

Box That Never Closes
© Michael Craig-Martin. Courtesy Gagosian Gallery. Photo credit: Swindon Museum and Art Gallery

Box That Never Closes 1967

Michael Craig-Martin (b.1941)

Blockboard, polyurethane paint, varnish & brass hardware

H 61 x W 61 x D 61 cm

Swindon Museum and Art Gallery

Two Walks
© Richard Long. All Rights Reserved, DACS 2021. Photo credit: Swindon Museum and Art Gallery

Two Walks 1972

Richard Long (b.1945)

Pencil & collage on ordinance survey map laid on card

H 61 x W 84 cm

Swindon Museum and Art Gallery

Hyperion
© Christopher Le Brun. All rights reserved, DACS 2021. Photo credit: Swindon Museum and Art Gallery

Hyperion 1982

Christopher Le Brun (b.1951)

Oil on canvas

H 249 x W 214 cm

Swindon Museum and Art Gallery

Sketch of CBD with Auerbach Drawing
© the estate of R. B. Kitaj. Photo credit: Swindon Museum and Art Gallery

Sketch of CBD with Auerbach Drawing 1989

R. B. Kitaj (1932–2007)

Charcoal on paper

H 57 x W 78 cm

Swindon Museum and Art Gallery

Rings and Strings and Things
© the copyright holder. Photo credit: Swindon Museum and Art Gallery

Rings and Strings and Things

John Greenwood (b.1959)

Oil on canvas

H 134 x W 180 cm

Swindon Museum and Art Gallery

25 Cromwell Street
© the artist. Photo credit: Swindon Museum and Art Gallery

25 Cromwell Street 2011

Robert Priseman (b.1965)

Oil on canvas

H 11 x W 7 cm

Swindon Museum and Art Gallery