To return to the list of current exhibitions, click here.

Julian Opie Collected Works
25 October 2014 - 22 February 2015 
This exhibition brings together the works of Julian Opie with that of his personal collection of works of art from the ancient world and 17th and 18th century British Portraiture...more

Six Masterpieces of the Spanish Golden Age: Paintings from Madrid, London and York
11 October – 1 February 2015 
Celebrating conservation of the Museum’s important painting The Last Communion of Saint Raymond Nonnatus by Francisco Pacheco...more

Victorian Childhood
21 June - 7 September 2014
What was life like for a Victorian child? In this fascinating exhibition, objects enable you to compare the lifestyles of rich and poor Victorian children through the key themes: clothing, school, work, play and home life...more

Changing Times – Fashion Inspired by 1914 – 1918
14 June - 31 August 2014
To commemorate the 100th Anniversary of the First World War...more

Hockney, Printmaker
7 June – 28 September 2014
A delightful and entertaining overview of the artist's graphic career to celebrate his 60 years as a printmaker...more

Shafts of Light - Mining Art in the Great Northern Coalfield
17 May 2014 – 21 September 2014
A salute to a once essential and powerful workforce...more

godsbridge X
5 April - 6 July 2014
With British Sculptor Tania Kovats as lead artist, 10 selected artists create their response to God's Bridge: a natural limestone formation across the River Greta, high on the Pennines...more

Manet: Execution of Maxmilian
22 March 2014 - 18 May 2014
Manet’s The Execution of Maximilian comes to the Museum as the first painting in the three-year Masterpiece Tour...more

Henry Poole & Co. Founder of Savile Row
The Art of Bespoke Tailoring and Wool Cloth
21 September 2013 - 11 May 2014

An exhibition to celebrate the craft of bespoke tailoring by Savile Row family, Henry Poole & Co which opened in 1806 and launched Savile Row. Henry Poole & Co went on to create the tuxedo ...more

Seven Billion Two Hundred and One Million Nine Hundred and Sixty-Four Thousand and Two Hundred and Thirty-Eight
25 January 2014 - 21 April 2014
Born in 1967, one of the Young British Artists, Gavin Turk has pioneered many forms of contemporary British sculpture...more

How to Hide a Lion!
26 October 2013 - 9 February 2014
An entertaining and interactive exhibition brings to life the stories of acclaimed children’s author, Helen Stephens...more

Laura Ashley: The Romantic Heroine
21 September 2013 - 5 January 2014
To celebrate the 60th anniversary in 2013 of the founding of the Laura Ashley label, this exhibition will celebrate the vision of the romantic heroine that Laura Ashley gave to fashion in the 1960s ...more

The Anglo-Saxons in the North
31 July 2013 - 31 December 2013
Highlighting the Museum’s Anglo-Saxon archaeology collections, in celebration of the Lindisfarne Gospels’ return to the region in 2013 ...more

Dolls, Bears and Robots
29 June 2013 -  8 September 2013
Appealing to families, this extension to the current toy display will create a specific Children’s Room in the Museum’s Streatlam Galleries. More dolls and teddy bears from the collection ...more

Jeremiah Dixon: Scientist, Surveyor and Stargazer  
27 April 2013 - 6 October 2013
In the year of the 250th anniversary of the commencement of the survey in 1763, of the founding of the Mason-Dixon Line by Cockfield born man, Jeremiah Dixon, the Museum will host an exhibition of ...more

Tim Walker: Dreamscapes 
Sat 25 May 13 - Sun 01 Sep 13
Leading fashion photographer Tim Walker, whose photographs have entranced readers of Vogue for over a decade, is widely acclaimed for his surreal and extravagant settings. Images for this exhibition more...

Portrait of Mademoiselle Claus by Edouard Manet
Wed 24 Apr 13 - Sun 02 Jun 13
Sold in 2011 for £28.5m, Manet’s important portrait was successfully saved for the nation by the Ashmolean Museum and the Art Fund. This major work comes to the Museum on the first stop ...more

Material Remains: Diana Winkfield
16 February 2013 - 8 September 2013
A new exhibition created specifically for The Bowes Museum’s award winning Fashion & Textile Gallery goes on display in the New Year; the first showing of this new body of work in the UK ...more  

Rokeby: Poetry and Landscape; Walter Scott and Turner in Teesdale
Sat 26 Jan 13 - Sun 28 Apr 13
The Bowes Museum’s exhibition Rokeby: (Poetry & Landscape) Walter Scott & Turner in Teesdale, marks the bicentenary of the publication of Scott’s epic poem, Rokeby, a thrilling ...more

Durham County Council Open Art Competition
Sat 02 Mar 13 - Sun 07 Apr 13
This is the fifth year that Durham County Council has staged the open art exhibition, which over the years has grown from strength to strength. The exhibition is now an established annual event that ...more

Titanic Legacy
Sat 01 Dec 12 - Sun 27 Jan 13 
To mark the Centenary Year of the launch of the titanic, students from the Fashion Marketing Degree Course at Northumbria Design were asked to explore and research past historical style in ...more

Beyond Bagpuss - an Artist's Journey
Sat 20 Oct 12 - Sun 17 Feb 13 
Artist Linda Birch, illustrator of Bagpuss & The Clangers , is to have an exhibition of her work at The Bowes Museum, where she holds regular painting classes. Beyond Bagpuss – an ...more

Feast your Eyes: The Fashion of Food in Art
Sat 06 Oct 12 - Sun 06 Jan 13
Celebrating the representation of food over the past five centuries, Feast your Eyes will explore fashions in food and drink throughout Europe from the 16th to the 21st Century. Ranging from ...more

Teesdale Open Studios
Sat 08 Sep 12 - Sun 07 Oct 12
See examples of work by all 22 artists taking part in Teesdale Open Studios 2012. Then head out to meet the artists in their studios during Teesdale Open Studios itself. The Fox and ...more

Charles Dickens' 200th Anniversary: Model House
Sat 28 Jan 12 - Mon 31 Dec 12
A display of Dickens-related objects to mark the anniversary, including an exceptional scale model of his house at 48 Doughty Street in London (now the Dickens House Museum). This comes complete with ...more

Lucile - Fashion Designer, Titanic Survivor
Sat 14 Apr 12 - Sun 06 Jan 13 
This summer’s show in the Fashion & Textile Gallery at The Bowes Museum features a dress designed by Lucile which spotlights both the glamorous and dangerous worlds of 1912. The ...more

Keith Coventry 'Black Bronze White Slaves'

Sat 14 Jul 12 - Sun 16 Sep 12
The first exhibition to focus exclusively on the bronze sculptures of celebrated artist Keith Coventry opens at The Bowes Museum in Barnard Castle on 14 July. Coventry is a key member of what has ...more

Stephen Jones: From Georgiana to Boy George

Sat 19 May 12 - Sun 02 Sep 12
One of British Fashion’s best loved characters, whose client list boasts style icons such as French First Lady Carla Bruni alongside pop divas Madonna and Kylie Minogue, is exhibiting a ...more

Our Sporting Life

Sat 09 Jun 12 - Mon 27 Aug 12
Our Sporting Life is a unique and ambitious national celebration of British Sport, with 100 exhibitions being held all over Britain to salute sport from the grass roots to the Olympic podia. Its aim ...more

Joséphine Bowes & The Costumier 

Mon 25 Jun 12 - Fri 06 Jul 12
Luca Costigliolo, an internationally celebrated theatrical and historical costumier, is re-creating the ball gown that Joséphine Bowes is wearing in her portrait below. The dress is being ...more

Complicidades: Frida Kahlo and Diego Rivera 

Sat 12 May 12 - Sun 24 Jun 12
The Bowes Museum is delighted to announce that it is the only UK venue to be included in the European tour of this photographic exhibition featuring prominent 20th century Mexican artists ...more

El Greco In Focus: The Tears of St Peter 

Sat 31 Mar 12 - Sun 29 Apr 12
An exhibition designed to tell and illustrate the Easter story for Christians and Non-Christians, centred on the famous painting by El Greco of ‘The Tears of St.Peter’, bought by John ...more

June Crisfield Chapman: Wood Engravings

Sat 04 Feb 12 - Sun 13 May 12
Artist, lecturer and writer June Crisfield Chapman is also an experienced wood engraver whose work in this medium is to be the focus of a new exhibition at The Bowes Museum in Barnard Castle in the ...more

Study, Design & Create: The 98 Lace Group

Sat 28 Jan 12 - Sun 15 Apr 12
Stunning works of art by some of the UK’s greatest makers of contemporary lace are to go on display at The Bowes Museum. The Study, Design and Create exhibition has been inspired by the ...more

Paquin Winter 1911 - the Centenary of an Evening Gown

Sat 03 Dec 11 - Mon 09 Apr 12
A rare and beautiful evening gown is to be the subject of a new display at The Bowes Museum in Barnard Castle this winter, taking visitors back one hundred years, to the aristocratic lifestyle of ...more

Dutch Landscapes: Paintings from the Royal Collection

Sat 12 Nov 11 - Sun 11 Mar 12
Dutch Landscapes: Paintings from the Royal Collection , brings together 38 remarkable works from the ‘golden age’ of Dutch painting, generously lent by Her Majesty The Queen. The ...more

At the Heart of Progress: Coal, Iron and Steam since 1750 

Sat 17 Sep 11 - Sun 15 Jan 12
John P. Eckblad worked as a management consultant to large petrochemical complexes on Teesside in north-eastern England and in northern Europe. In northern England in about 1974, he purchased his ...more

Between the Lines 

Sat 20 Aug 11 - Sun 20 Nov 11
A unique exhibition of textile sculptures is to go on display in the new Fashion & Textile Gallery at The Bowes Museum. Created by textile artist Naseem Darbey, the display is a dramatic ...more

Amazing Egyptians 

Sat 02 Jul 11 - Wed 31 Aug 11
An exhibition aimed at families, exploring the customs and traditions surrounding life and death in Ancient Egypt. Follow the journey to the afterlife from the magical spells and the strange ...more

Vivienne Westwood Shoes: A World Wide Exhibition 

Fri 10 Jun 11 - Sun 10 Jul 11
This exhibition celebrates the ingenuity and creativity of British fashion designer Vivienne Westwood, focusing on her designs of the ultimate fetish object: the shoe. Following the success of the ...more

Painting Flowers: Fantin-Latour and the Impressionists 

Sat 16 Apr 11 - Sun 09 Oct 11
Flower power is the theme running through the first large scale show in Britain to celebrate the still life paintings of Henri Fantin-Latour. Although the artist’s name might not be the first ...more

Damien Hirst: Print Maker 

Fri 05 Nov 10 - Sun 27 Feb 11
Following a £12m refurbishment, The Bowes Museum brings a global name to the Barnard Castle treasure house this autumn with the opening of Damien Hirst: Print Maker . This world class ...more

British Sporting Art 

Tue 11 May 10 - Sun 10 Oct 10
British Sporting Art, will explore the genre of Sporting Art in Britain, from horseracing and hunting to boxing, football and cricket. Central to the theme of the exhibition, which will include ...more

A Warning To Heretics 

Sat 23 Jan 10 - Sun 07 Mar 10
One of the oldest and most intriguing paintings in The Bowes Museum’s collection is the focal point of a new display. The small panel, A Miracle of the Sacrament by Sassetta, painted in Siena ...more

Goya's Prison: the Year of Despair 

Sat 03 Oct 09 - Tue 11 May 10
Late in 1792 Goya became severely ill, and even though he eventually recovered he was left profoundly deaf for the rest of his days. During a period of recuperation he produced a set of small cabinet ...more

Toys Tales 

Sat 09 May 09 - Sun 01 Nov 09
Visitors to The Bowes Museum this summer can wallow in a trip down memory lane at the major Toy Tales exhibition. The exhibition, is a celebration of 60 years of BBC children’s television ...more

Canaletto and the View Painters of Venice 

Sat 14 Feb 09 - Wed 31 Mar 10
An exploration of the Museum’s two famous large Canaletto’s saved for the nation in 1980 by The Art Fund; Regatta on the Grand Canal and The Bucintoro Returning to the Molo. ...more

Turner in Teesdale

Sat 13 Dec 09 - Sun 31 Jan 10
An in depth exploration of The Bowes Museum’s watercolours by JMW Turner. This display will feature the recently acquired Bowes Tower, produced to illustrate Sir Walter Scott’s epic poem Rokeby, alongside acquisitons recently obtained by the Museum.

Summer sketching tours were part of Turner’s annual routine and he first travelled the North of England in 1797, making sketches in Yorkshire, Durham and Northumberland. During the 1830s he produced designs to illustrate volumes of poetry by some of his most celebrated contemporaries including Sir Walter Scott, author of the epic poem Rokeby, which is set in the countryside between Rokeby Park and Barnard Castle. Bowes Tower acted as the frontispiece to Volume Nine of Scott’s poetry.

Faith and Love: Picturing the Bible From Raphael To El Greco 

Sat 11 Oct 08 - Fri 16 Jan 09
A prestigious exhibition exploring many of the most popular Bible stories visualized by Western artists and craftsmen opens at The Bowes Museum on Saturday 11 October. Faith and Love: ...more

Alfred Sisley: Impressionist Landscapes 

Sat 17 May 08 - Sun 21 Sep 08
The work of Alfred Sisley is on now show at The Bowes Museum; the first major exhibition devoted to this leading Impressionist to take place outside London in half a century.   Alfred ...more

Nature's Delights 

Sat 17 May 08 - Mon 22 Sep 08 

Nature’s Delights includes a selection of wildlife paintings by Charles Frederick Tunnicliffe, who introduced a wider audience to the countryside with his illustrations for ...more

Elijah Yeoman 1849 - 1930 

Sat 09 Feb 08 - Sun 15 Jun 08
A tribute to the renowned 19th and 20th century Teesdale photographer. An eclectic record of Barnard Castle and the dale.

Emile Gallé and the Origins of Art Nouveau 

Sat 29 Sep 07 - Sun 20 Jan 08
The Bowes Museum’s collections include an early commission from Gallé, a glass cabaret set made in 1872 to order for Joséphine Bowes. It forms the starting point for this exploration of Art Nouveau.

Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II - An 80th Birthday Portrait 

Sat 16 Jun 07 - Sat 28 Jul 07
This acclaimed painting of The Queen, created before a BBC One television audience of millions, visits The Bowes Museum.

Watercolours and Drawings from The Collection of Queen Elizabeth The Queen Mothe

Sat 19 May 07 - Sun 02 Sep 07
A touring exhibition curated by The Royal Collection, on loan from Her Majesty the Queen including 
73 watercolours and drawings dating from the 18th to the 20th centuries, such as Gainsborough, Augustus John and John Piper. Some were bought at auction, some purchased during World War II to raise money for the war effort, others were gifts from the artists or commissioned by The Queen Mother. 

Fine & Fashionable: Lace from The Blackborne Collection  

Sat 09 Sep 06 - Sun 29 Apr 07
Fine & Fashionable features one of the world's largest collections of lace. It was put together in the 19th century by the father and son, Anthony and Arthur Blackborne, master lace dealers. ...more

Impressionist Women  

Sat 03 Jun 06 - Sun 13 Aug 06
This national loan exhibition was built around the exciting acquisition by The Bowes Museum, of a portrait by the impressionist painter Paul Helleu. It explored the life of Helleu and other Impressionist artists such as Degas and Whistler, and examined the portrayal of society women in late 19th century art.

Turner: Tours of Durham and Richmondshire 

Sat 28 Jan 06 - Sun 14 May 06

This major exhibition, curated by The Bowes Museum, explored JMW Turner’s stunning watercolours of the North of England. Paintings of Durham and Richmondshire were accompanied by other fascinating works including depictions of Farnley Hall in Yorkshire and Brinkburn Priory in Northumberland. A highlight was Turner’s watercolour of Barnard Castle, which returned to the UK from the Unites states especially for this exhibition.

A Gardener's Labyrinth: Portraits of People, Plants and Places 

Sat 19 Nov 05 - Sun 19 Feb 06 

This exhibition had toured from the National Portrait Gallery.

Napoleon: Art & Empire in the Age of Trafalgar 

Sat 27 Aug 05 - Sun 08 Jan 06 

Intriguing insights into the Napoleonic era will be shown in public for the first time. Also featuring works from the British Museum and the National Gallery, the exhibition coincides with the 200th anniversary of the Battle of Trafalgar.

Sense & Sensibility Cotman: Watercolours of Durham and Yorkshire 

Sat 07 May 05 - Sun 31 Jul 05
19th century painter John Sell Cotman continues to inspire generations of artists. From collections all over Britain, his stunning landscapes were brought together in the exhibition, which focused on paintings of the countryside surrounding The Bowes Museum. (In association with Harewood House, Leeds).

Raphael: Madonna of the Pinks The Virgin and Child in Renaissance Italy 

Sat 16 Apr 05 - Sun 26 Jun 05
This exquisite masterpiece acquired amidst huge publicity, and two accompanying works by Titian and Ghirlandaio, were on tour from the National Gallery, London.

Sudan: Ancient Treasures

Sat 12 Mar 05 - Sun 30 Oct 05 

This major exhibition offered a unique insight into the lives and cultural history of the inhabitants of the ancient Kingdoms of the Nile. It was on tour from the Sudan National Museum, Khartoum via the British Museum, where it was shown to great acclaim. The exhibition included recent discoveries from excavations in Sudan.

Norman Parkinson: Portraits in Fashion 

Sat 05 Feb 05 - Sun 05 Jun 05
The dynamic selection of Parkinson’s fashion photography from the National Gallery Collection, concentrated on the styles and glamour of the 1950s. This exhibition was accompanied by fashionable dress of the era taken from The Bowes Museum’s own collection.

Boucher: Landscapes

Sat 22 Jan 05 - Mon 28 Mar 05
Featured a selection of paintings and drawings by acclaimed 18th century artist François Boucher. (in association with the Wallace Collection, London).

Toulouse-Lautrec and the Art of the French Poster 

Sat 11 Sep 04 - Sun 13 Mar 05 
This nationally acclaimed exhibition contained some of the most striking posters ever created by Toulouse-Lautrec and his contemporaries. These works, mostly depicting late nineteenth century Parisian life, were originally exhibited at the first international poster exhibition in London in 1894.


Sat 10 Jul 04 - Sun 12 Sep 04 
This exhibition was produced by the Yorkshire Sculptors Group. The active group of artists produced a range of mixed media sculptures for this challenging and thought-provoking contemporary show.

In the Footsteps of El Greco 

Sat 12 Jun 04 - Sun 12 Sep 04 
Respected regional artist Anthony Clark had created new work for this major show. This body of work had been inspired by Clark’s recent visits to Spain, Italy and Greece and by several artists in The Bowes Museum’s collection including El Greco and Goya.

Boudin, Monet and the Sea Painters of Normandy 

Sat 29 May 04 - Mon 30 Aug 04 
This major exhibition explored the relationship between Boudin and Monet and their interaction with other French painters working in Normandy during the second half of the 19th century. 
Paintings by Boudin, Dumax and Noël were featured from The Bowes Museum collection alongside international loans from Britain, France and the USA.

William Morris and the Arts and Crafts Movement in the North East 

Sat 11 Oct 03 - Sun 29 Feb 04
This stunning exhibition celebrated the work of William Morris and his contemporaries, leaders of the Arts and Crafts Movement in the late 19th and early 20th centuries. A major section of this exhibition explored new ground in featuring artists, designers, craft workers and patrons of the North East, whose creative activity in the same period showed the extent of Morris’ influence on regional artists and the impressive way in which they responded to it.

The Tim Rice Collection

Sat 05 Jul 03 - Sun 11 Jan 04
Masterpieces from the private collection of Sir Tim Rice, one of Britain’s most celebrated lyricists. Sir Tim, who is well known for works such as Evita, Chess and Jesus Christ Superstar loaned over fifty paintings to The Bowes Museum for this remarkable exhibition, which included pictures by Degas, Hockney, Picasso, Pissarro, Warhol and Waterhouse.