In a brand-new exhibition, Amgueddfa Cymru – National Museum Wales will take a bold approach to displaying its art collections at National Museum Cardiff as it opens 'The Rules of Art?' which runs from 23 October 2021 to 4 September 2022.

In the most ambitious large scale, cross century art exhibitions in the museum’s history, the exhibition will explore new relationships between art pieces from the national collection and ask pressing questions about representation, identity and the environment in which we live.

The exhibition will bring together five centuries of painting, drawing, sculpture, photography, film and ceramic, featuring work from artists such as Rembrandt, Thomas Jones, Pablo Picasso, Gwen John, Bedwyr Williams, Helen Sear, Rachel Whiteread and Clare Woods. 'The Rules of Art?' also unveils a series of major new acquisitions by John Akomfrah (2017 winner of Artes Mundi 7), Caroline Walker, Zoe Preece (winner of the National Eisteddfod Craft and Design Gold Medal Award in 2018), and Simon Ling.

Works will be displayed thematically around the hierarchy of genres, first introduced by the French Academy in the 17th century. These are: History Painting, Portrait, Scenes of Everyday Life, Landscape and Still Life.

'The Rules of Art?' will question this hierarchy and the social and political power it underpinned by showcasing art in eclectic groupings from across Amgueddfa Cymru’s rich historic, modern, and contemporary art collections.

Inside the National Museum Wales

The foyer at National Museum Cardiff

A new exhibition for 2021 will feature highlights from David Hurn’s private collection of photography. 'David Hurn: Swaps' runs from 23 October 2021 to 27 March 2022.

Throughout his career as a documentary photographer and member of Magnum Photos, David Hurn has been an avid collector of photography. He gifted a large collection of photographs to Amgueddfa Cymru – National Museum Wales in 2017. The gift comprised two parts: approximately 1500 of his own photographs that span his sixty-year career as a documentary photographer; and approximately 700 photographs from his private collection which he has compiled throughout the course of his career.

Amgueddfa Cymru wishes to thank Magnum Photos and Martin Parr for their support with this exhibition.

A wild pony colt on the Brecon Beacons with cold tourists in the rain in the background.

GB. WALES. Brecon Beacons. Wild pony colt. Cold tourists in the rain in the background. 1974

National Museum Cardiff are also displaying Lily's Fossil Footprint, a well preserved fossilised dinosaur footprint found on at Bendrick's Bay, Barry.


Published 31 August 2021

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