Exposed: The Body in Art

12th September 2014

Opens 15th September at Shrewsbury Museum & Art Gallery

A new exhibition exploring artistic responses to the human body is set to open at Shrewsbury Museum & Art Gallery on 15th September 2014 until 4th January 2015.

Works by major artists including Francis Bacon, Lucien Freud and Auguste Rodin will feature in the collection of paintings, drawings, photography and sculpture, which seeks to question the aesthetic ideals we impose on ourselves and examine how an obsession with body image has developed throughout history.

At the centre of the exhibition are the oil paintings of Edward Burne-Jones’ 1878 Pygmalion series, which tell a story of lust, desire and virtue. Other themes explored include the depiction of the ‘ideal’ body, the transformation of the body in art, and the human form as a vehicle for the artist’s imagination and fantasy.

Works by Albrecht Dürer, Dante Gabriel Rossetti, Helen Chadwick and Gillian Wearing will also feature in the exhibition. 'Exposed' spans 500 years of art,  from Dürer's 'Hercules at the Crossroads' (1498) to Wearing's 2009 photograph, 'Lily Cole', depicting the model as a damaged porcelain doll.

The new Shrewsbury Museum and Art Gallery opened in April 2014 as the result of a major restoration project on the town’s old Music Hall. ‘Exposed’ will be on show in the Special Exhibitions Gallery overlooking the The Square. The works of art have been loaned by Birmingham Museums Trust and the exhibition is supported by funding from Arts Council England.

‘Exposed: The Body in Art from Dürer to Freud' will run 15th September 2014 – 4th January 2015. Shrewsbury Museum & Art Gallery is open 10am – 5pm, seven days a week until 30th September. It is closed on Mondays from 1st October 2014 until Easter 2015. Admission is £4.00 per adult and £2.00 per child, which includes entry to the Special Exhibitions Gallery. Concessions are available. For more information visit

Image: Edward Burne-Jones Pygmalion and the Image The Godhead Fires copyright Birmingham Museums Trust.

Back to all News Articles