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Leighton House

2023 Exhibition programme

Leighton House presents original and rarely seen works by three female artists.

2023 Exhibition programme launches at Leighton House

Throughout 2023 Leighton House will feature three exhibitions celebrating female artists working across paper, canvas and textiles. Contemporary painter Shahrzad Ghaffari, award-winning textile artist Nour Hage and Evelyn De Morgan, a pioneering artist from the Victorian era, will be exhibiting new work and rarely seen pieces whilst collectively exploring themes of spirituality, symbolism and feminism.

With the ambition of showcasing rarely seen collections and to collaborate with contemporary artists, the exhibition programme at Leighton House explores a wide range of themes rooted in Victorian art and culture whilst encouraging current and thought-provoking dialogues with audiences
Daniel Robbins, Senior Curator

Evelyn De Morgan: The Gold Drawings

Evelyn De Morgan: The Gold Drawings explores De Morgan’s unique practice of making gold drawings, showcasing 14 artworks loaned by the Trustees of the De Morgan Foundation and Victoria Dolorosa from the Leighton House collection. This exhibition will be the first since 1896 to display a group of these beautiful artworks made in brilliant gold pigment on dark grey woven paper.

De Morgan initially discovered this technique through Edward Burne-Jones but her works went beyond this initial inspiration. Using solid blocks of pure pigment and grinding them to a powder, she invented crayons and paints that she then specifically applied to the production of her drawings.

Evelyn De Morgan: The Gold Drawings | 11 March - 27 August 2023 | Tavolozza Drawings Gallery | Free entry

Evelyn de Morgan, Victoria Dolorosa and Study for ‘Gloria in Excelsis’ (detail)

Shahrzad Ghaffari: Journey to Oneness

Following the commission of her striking mural Oneness Shahrzad Ghaffari: Journey to Oneness presents a curated selection of works from the last fifteen years of Shahrzad’s career, influenced by Persian poetry and artistic traditions and themed around ideas of love, spirituality, and identity. Highlights include her 2010 work Lion and Sun, a highly personal piece painted in the wake of the 2009 Iranian presidential election protests, and a rare example of figurative painting within her work. This will sit alongside examples of the large scale abstract calligraphic paintings she is best known for, such as Kneeled to be crowned by love. The exhibition will also closely examine the central ideas behind Oneness itself, presenting her preparatory painting on canvas, and a short film on the making of the work.

Shahrzad Ghaffari: Journey to Oneness | 22 April - 1 October 2023 | Verey Exhibition Gallery | Included with Leighton House museum ticket

Shahrzad Ghaffari, Kneeled to be crowned by love (detail)

Nour Hage: Kheit

Displayed in the drawing room at Leighton House, Kheit by British-Lebanese textile artist Nour Hage showcases commissioned artwork based on Hage’s reinterpretation of visual symbolisms from the Arab Hall.  Alongside the artist’s solo pieces,  is a collaborative project devised with a group of local residents, deepening the understanding of talismanic objects and their power.

Kheit is a collaboration between Leighton House and The Arab British Centre; part of their Arab Britain programming theme that sets out to explore and document the history, achievements and experiences of Arabs in Britain. The project is funded by The Barakat Trust’s Hands on Islamic Art grant. 

Nour Hage: Kheit | 28 April - 16 July 2023 | On display in the Drawing Room | Included with Leighton House museum ticket

Nour Hage, My heart is peaceful, my body is warm, 2021-22