The new MK Gallery in Milton Keynes, opening its doors to the public on 16 March 2019, today announced its exhibition programme for 2019.
The inaugural exhibition will be The Lie of the Land, an ambitious show charting how British landscape was radically transformed by changes in free time and leisure activities since the aristocratic pursuits of hunting and shooting. From the social, urban experiment of Milton Keynes to Capability Brown’s gardens at nearby Stowe, the exhibition teases out the aspirations that underpin our built environments. Featuring work by artists and designers including Canaletto, Jeremy Deller, Rose Finn-Kelcey, Elizabeth Frink, Thomas Gainsborough, Richard Hamilton, Emma Hart, Gertrude Jekyll, Laura Knight, Lawrence Lek, L.S. Lowry, Henry Moore, Eduardo Paolozzi, Bridget Riley, Yinka Shonibare MBE, Jo Spence, James Tissot, J.M.W. Turner and Rachel Whiteread.
This will be followed by Paula Rego: Obedience and Defiance. Showing works spanning her entire career since the 1960s, this will be the first major retrospective of Rego’s work in England for over 10 years. The exhibition includes previously unseen paintings and works on paper from the artist’s family and close friends, which reflect Rego’s perspective as a woman immersed in urgent social issues and current affairs. The exhibition will subsequently travel to the Scottish National Gallery of Modern Art, Edinburgh and to the Irish Museum of Modern Art, Dublin, the first ever retrospective of Rego’s work in Scotland and Ireland.
George Stubbs: ‘all done from Nature’ will bring together more than 50 paintings and 40 prints and drawings including a rare loan of the National Gallery’s masterpiece Whistlejacket, as well as lesser known works, some of which have not been seen in the UK for many decades. Stubbs’ detailed anatomical studies will be displayed alongside the actual skeleton of Eclipse – the progenitor of over 90 percent of subsequent racehorses - as well as his paintings of Eclipse. The exhibition will also feature a selection of drawings from the artist’s last great endeavour, A Comparative Anatomical Exposition of the Structure of the Human Body with that of a Tiger and A Common Fowl produced many years before Darwin’s On the Origin of Species. A version of the exhibition will tour to the Mauritshuis in The Hague where it will be the first George Stubbs exhibition in the Netherlands.
MK Calling will go on show in February 2020, with an open call to artists working across all art forms, with a connection to Milton Keynes. This is an opportunity to showcase and support exciting new talent. The call for submissions will begin in April 2019.
16 March–26 May 2019: The Lie of the Land
13 June–22 September 2019: Paula Rego: Obedience and Defiance
11 October 2019–26 January 2020: George Stubbs
13 February–10 May 2020: MK Calling