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News | Published: Tue 20 May 2008

ImageAnglo-Saxon coins, nineteenth century watercolours and contemporary etchings feature in this month’s new exhibitions

Exhibitions opening at The Fitzwilliam Museum, Cambridge over the next two weeks feature Anglo-Saxon coins and metalwork, nineteenth-century watercolours of rural Britain, and contemporary etchings by Christopher Le Brun.

Christopher Le Brun: Fifty Etchings 2005
20 May - 28 September
Shiba Gallery (Gallery 14)

Made over the course of a year and employing an extraordinary variety of subtle etching techniques, Christopher Le Brun’s Fifty Etchings 2005, published by Paragon Press, revisits a wide range of subjects familiar the artist’s other work, while also introducing new themes and motifs. In this carefully constructed sequence, Le Brun shapes associations and memories of literature and music, as well as art. Like the questing rider and travellers in the prints, the viewer is drawn into a metaphysical journey in search of meaning as well as beauty. Christopher Le Brun’s painting The Eye’s Castle recently acquired by the Fitzwilliam Museum, is also on display.

Anglo-Saxon Art in the Round
23 May - 7 September
Octagon Gallery (Gallery 10)

This exhibition will show for the first time early Anglo-Saxon coins from the De Wit collection, recently purchased by the Fitzwilliam Museum with support from the Heritage Lottery Fund and the Art Fund. These gold shillings and silver pennies display the most innovative range of pictorial and geometric designs drawn from Classical and Germanic sources, with bold images of people, animals, plants and geometric motifs both rich in detail and sophisticated in concept. These pieces will be juxtaposed with contemporary ornamental metalwork drawn from other museums in the region, illuminating the previously lost treasures of an artistically vibrant period of history.
Anglo-Saxon Art in the Round is accompanied by a programme of talks exploring the Anglo-Saxon world and a series of interactive handling sessions:find out more.

'The field calls me to labour': Watercolours of nineteenth-century rural Britain by Robert Hills and his contemporaries
27 May - 7 September
Charrington Print Room (Gallery 16)

Although relatively unknown to audiences today, Robert Hills (1769-1844) was at the vanguard in promoting the appreciation of watercolour painting among British audiences at the beginning of the nineteenth century. His watercolours - often intimate and spontaneous ‘snapshots’ of nature and the countryside around him - are highly original, with a freshness of vision that offers a revealing glimpse into the lives of those who worked on the land. Drawn exclusively from the Museum’s outstanding collection of British watercolours, they will be shown alongside the drawings and watercolours of contemporary artists such as James Ward, David Cox and Peter de Wint.