An oil painting by one of Britains most important painters, J M W Turner, has been added to the permanent collection of The Bowes Museum
at Barnard Castle.
The painting, Lowther Castle - Evening, was in family ownership until it was given to the nation through the Acceptance in Lieu scheme administered by Arts Council England. It has been allocated to the Museum following a successful application by Keeper of Fine Art, Emma House and Dr Howard Coutts.
The Bowes Museum has always had an interest in Turner; the father of our founder John Bowes was a direct patron of the artist, who painted two views of the family house of Gibside, near Newcastle-upon-Tyne, which are today owned by the Museum.
This acquisition continues our tradition of exploring Turners work, and follows a series of successful exhibitions at The Bowes Museum featuring his paintings, including the current show Rokeby: Poetry & Landscape; Walter Scott & Turner in Teesdale, which runs until Sunday 28 April.
Lowther Castle - Evening, now on show in the newly refurbished suite of painting galleries, is one of a commissioned contrasting pair, the other of which remains in private ownership. The castle itself, only 40 miles or so from the Museum, was in the process of being built when Turner visited in 1809 to gather sketches of architectural details and drawings of the surrounding landscape, and it was still under construction when the artist exhibited the completed paintings at the Royal Academy in 1810.
However, both paintings show the range of the castles immediate estate and were based on drawings which today are in the Turner bequest at Tate Britain.
We are delighted the AIL scheme has allocated Lowther Castle - Evening to the Museum, said Ms House. The painting is a fine example of J M W Turners expressive landscape style and greatly enhances the Museums collections.