Ferens Art Gallery

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Things to do


Date of travel

June, 2017

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Like half a million others, I paid £14 to visit the Hockney exhibition at the Tate Modern. Even with a timed-entrance ticket, it was crowded and difficult to do justice to the art. When we left, we decided against a reviving cup of tea as there were queues in the café.

Hull’s “Ferens Art Gallery”:http://www.hullcc.gov.uk/portal/page-_pageid=221,631619&_dad=portal&_schema=PORTAL is not like this: it is a delightful, peaceful experience and on a Thursday afternoon, we had plenty of space and time. Of the 12 galleries, three host temporary exhibitions with two on the first floor, accessible by stairs or lift. It’s easy to navigate and all free.

Until the 13 August, the gallery is hosting ‘Skin’ which ‘explores modern and contemporary artists’ responses to the human figure’ and included works by three people whose work has never been exhibited in Hull before: Lucien Freud, photographer Spencer Tunick and sculptor Ron Mueck. The latter had created this HUGE naked hairy man appropriately named Wild Man.

In July 2016, 3200 brave, some may say foolhardy, volunteers stripped naked, painted themselves blue and posed around Hull for the art work ‘Sea of Hull’. As well as seeing images from the day, we watched a short video taking you from the people stripping off, bagging up their clothes, smothering themselves in paint and posing around the town before finally trudging home in clothes and blue paint. It can’t have been a pain-free experience: walking around town in bare feet and then lying down in the middle of the road. Still, it produced some fantastic images so I’m sure it was worth it.

The static galleries contained a variety of paintings ranging from ‘Renaissance to Baroque’ through to ‘Modern and Contemporary’ and because we were in Hull, there was also ‘Maritime Highlights’. If you want to know more about the gallery contents before you go, there’s a brief over view on their “website.”:http://www.hullcc.gov.uk/portal/page-_pageid=221,632171&_dad=portal&_schema=PORTAL.

We also sat in a dark room and watched a film of the sea and the crashing waves: it was slightly hypnotic but the sound of the waves wasn’t in sync with the movement of the water.

At the end of our tour, we didn’t feel the need for a reviving cup of tea, so we luxuriated in the sun on the “cafe’s”:http://www.hullcc.gov.uk/portal/page-_pageid=221,632258&_dad=portal&_schema=PORTAL outdoor terrace with a cheeky glass of Jack Rabbit Pinot Grigio.

Helen Jackson

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