The Macclesfield Portraits of Joseph Wright of Derby

The Macclesfield Portraits of Joseph Wright of Derby

The Old Sunday School, 2 October – 6 January 2018

Joseph Wright of Derby (1734-1797) is well-known for his paintings of scientific discovery and industry but he was also a successful portrait painter.

He painted some of the leading figures in Macclesfield including Charles Roe. Last year Macclesfield Museums bought two Wright portraits of John Stafford and Barbara Tatton.  This display celebrates these portraits and the stories behind them.

The portraits were bought with support from the Art Fund, Arts Council England/Victoria and Albert Museum Purchase Grant Fund and Friends of Macclesfield Silk Heritage.

MBs' Trip Up the Nile

MBs' Trip Up the Nile

The Old Sunday School, 30 October – 28 July 2018

In 1873, Marianne Brocklehurst, daughter of a Macclesfield silk manufacturer, set off for Egypt with her companion Mary Booth (together, they were known as the MBs), her teenage nephew Alfred and servant George. They sailed the Nile in a boat they renamed ‘Bagstones’ after their home in Wincle, visited tombs, bazaars, made friends with other travellers and Egyptologists, and collected a wealth of incredible artefacts.

A talented artist, Marianne captured many of their experiences and the sights they saw in her illustrated diary and sketchbooks. This exhibition brings together for the first time her collection alongside her drawings and diary excerpts, revealing her wit and giving real insight to this fascinating woman.

 

5th Macclesfield Open Art Exhibition

5th Macclesfield Open Art Exhibition

The Silk Museum, 9 December 2017 – 20 January 2018

A perennial favourite; this show gets bigger and better every year.

With a wealth of work by local talent, many of them for sale, take a look and vote for the piece you like best. Perhaps you could even buy it!

Charles Tunnicliffe: a Cheshire Countryman

Charles Tunnicliffe: a Cheshire Countryman

Between Floors Gallery, The Silk Museum, 11 December onwards

Charles Frederick Tunnicliffe (1901-1979) was Britain’s foremost 20th century wildlife artist, renowned for his decorative watercolours of birds.  He is less well-known as a printmaker, but it is often in these pictures that the influence of his early life in Cheshire is revealed.

Born in Langley, Macclesfield, he lived and worked on the family farm at Sutton Lane Ends until he was 19 years old.  He studied at the Macclesfield School of Art (the building which now houses The Silk Museum) before receiving a scholarship to the Royal College of Art in London.

The exhibition explores both his well-observed images of rural Macclesfield in the early 20th century and his later commercial successes.  He readily found work illustrating books and in advertising, most famously for Henry Williamson’s 1932 edition of Tarka the Otter.

This exhibition highlights a number of unseen and early works, including watercolours of Macclesfield and a self-portrait print.  His wife Winifred, whom he met whilst studying at the Royal College of Art, was also an artist and amongst the exhibits there is an example of one of her carved bookcases and a ceramic polar bear.