New Permanent Display, from Victorian to Modern British Art, for the Walker Art Gallery


LIVERPOOL.- ‘Art and Insanity at the Walker Art Gallery’ was one newspaper’s description of the Walker Art Gallery’s 1892 purchase of the painting Summer (1891) by Edward Hornel. The uproar surrounding the acquisition was due to the artist’s unusual style, creating patterns and striking colours which virtually diminished the subject. Strength of feeling was such that Philip Rathbone, chair of Liverpool City Council’s arts committee, was forced to threaten his resignation if the painting was not accepted. The controversial painting now features in a new interactive gallery, exploring the often turbulent transition from Victorian to modern British art, which opened at the Walker Art Gallery on 25 March 2011. Radical shifts in British art are set against a backdrop of major upheavals in society, European art movements and wider world events, providing a more thorough understanding of the