The Bowes Museum has built an acclaimed reputation for staging a top class exhibition programme, whether exclusive, touring or in-house, developed through working with other British and international cultural attractions, galleries, museums, and contemporary and traditional artists. Some of the most popular have included shows by leading fashion icons, Yves Saint Laurent, Vivienne Westwood and international milliner, Stephen Jones. As well as a strong fashion and textiles repertoire, the Museum has exhibited contemporary art work such as Damien Hirst Prints, stunning photography by Tim Walker and illuminating neons by Gavin Turk.
Along more traditional lines, exhibitions have featured works by artists such as Turner, Fantin-Latour and Manet, plus Dutch Landscapes from the Royal Collection.
The Museum continues to develop its exhibitions themed specifically for families, with a creative events programme and school workshops contributing to the learning and enjoyment of families and schoolchildren. Amazing Egyptians was extremely popular, as was Toy Tales, along with children's author Helen Stephens' exhibition How To Hide a Lion.
The exhibition programme is supported by a diverse range of events, including gallery talks and lectures by curators; walks, and textile, photography and painting workshops. The school holidays are buzzing with activity as our Education team rolls out an ambitious programme of craft workshops tailored around the exhibition themes and incorporating skills and content from the national curriculum. There are also outdoor events, ranging from our famous two-day Christmas market to outdoor theatre productions by the award winning Castle Players, live sculpting as part of The Stone Festival, car rallies, contemporary dance performances and children's nature trails.