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Fitzwilliam Museum

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January 2016



Join us in celebrating our 200th anniversary

2016 marks the 200th anniversary of the Fitzwilliam Museum, founded by a bequest of Richard Viscount Fitzwilliam of Merrion in 1816 (pictured right). The story of the Museum will be told in Celebrating the First 200 years a special exhibition about our history, which opens on 4 February. Next month will also see the opening of our first major bicentenary exhibition Death on the Nile: Uncovering the afterlife of ancient Egypt (23 February – 22 May). Plus, each month look out for a special object on display in the Museum, January's object of the month is the terracotta statue of Handel in Gallery 3. We will keep you up to date with all of our exciting plans throughout the year. If you haven’t visited for a while… make this the year you visit!
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 Gallery 3



Free admission. Open: Tue to Sat 10.00 - 17.00, Sun & Bank Holiday Mondays 12.00 - 17.00.
Closed: Mondays


Ronald Searle: ‘Obsessed with drawing’

Until 31 January 2016

Ronald Searle (1920-2011) is among Britain's most popular and celebrated graphic satirists.

Born in Cambridge, Searle is best known as the inventor of the fictional girls’ school St. Trinian’s (1948) and for his collaborations on Geoffrey Willans’ Molesworth series (1953-58). However, as this exhibition shows, he had a long and productive career across a range of different genres. Searle worked as a war artist, but also made drawings for book and magazine illustration, travel reportage, theatre, film, medals and political caricature.

This exhibition is drawn from a recent gift of the artist’s work, generously presented to the Museum by his children in 2014.
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Cradled in Caricature: Visual humour in satirical prints and drawings

Until 31 January 2016

This exhibition looks at the methods used by British artists from James Gillray to Glen Baxter to amuse and entertain, ranging from the simple exaggeration of facial features and burlesque comedy, to more complicated word-play and ironic literary allusions. 

Works in the show are drawn from the Fitzwilliam’s collection with key loans from Andrew Edmunds and Benjamin Lemer.
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1939-1945: World at War

Until 31 January 2016

Banknotes and coins reveal little known aspects of World War II. See different types of currency and learn about rampant inflation as the nations at war struggled to pay for the conflict.
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Beauty and Balance:
Kettle’s Yard at the Fitzwilliam Museum

Until 03 April 2016

Paintings and sculptures by Henri Gaudier-Brzeska, Ben Nicholson, Alfred Wallis, Joan Miró and Christopher Wood will be on display.
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Unless otherwise stated, talks are free and admission is by token, 1 per person, available at the Courtyard Entrance desk from 12.45 on the day. Induction loop available. For more information and locations visit our website.

Art Speak

Tue 19 January: 13.15 - 13.45

Enjoy half an hour looking at and talking about art. No token necessary.
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Portrait of Maria Isabel de Borbón, Queen of the Two Sicilies by Vicente López

Wed 20 January: 13.15 – 14.00

Tim Knox, Director
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Unlocking the secrets of illuminated manuscripts

Wed 27 January: 13.15 – 14.00

Dr Lucía Pereira-Pardo, Research Assistant, Department of Manuscripts and Printed Books
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 Gallery 2



Gallery 2

Tour of the Museum

Saturdays: 14.30 - 15.30

A one-hour tour of the collections with a Blue Badge Guide. Tickets may be bought from the Guide or in advance via Cambridge Tourist Information Centre tel: 01223 457574 or email:
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Audio descriptive tour for blind and partially sighted adults

Tue 26 January: 15.00 – 15.45

Join trained Museum staff from the Museum of Zoology for an audio descriptive tour on animals in art.
Free. Booking essential, tel: 01223 332904 or email:
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Enjoy a free classical concert in the beautiful surroundings of Gallery 3 from 13.15 – 14.00. Admission is by token, 1 per person, available at the Founder’s Entrance desk on a first-come first-served basis from 12.00 on the day of the concert. Space is limited – no standing room available. Voluntary collection after each concert. Programmes may be subject to change.

Music for piano

17 January

Chris Lloyd performs a programme of orchestral music transcribed for piano including Ravel La Valse and Prokoviev Romeo and Juliet.
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Lord Fitzwilliam as collector and patron of music

24 January

Harpsichord recital, to be performed by Dr Gerald Gifford FRCM, Honorary Keeper of Music.

The first in a series of three introduced recitals throughout 2016 to celebrate the Museum’s bicentenary.
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Vox Cantab

31 January

Louisa Denby directs the choir in singing John Rutter’s The Wind in the Willows.
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Music concert



Cat lecturing in a gallery

Cartoon creations

Sat 23 January: 10.30 – 12.30

8 – 12 yrs

Get inspired by fun cartoons in our special exhibition Ronald Searle: ‘Obsessed with Drawing’. Then, work with our expert artist to design your own cartoon sketch.

£8 per child. Booking essential, tel: 01223 332904 or email: Places confirmed on receipt of payment.
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Sat 30 January: 11.00 – 13.00

13 - 18 yrs

Join us in our art studio to create your own designer tote bag inspired by art in the Museum, with London based artist Ella McCartney.
£5. Booking essential, tel: 01223 332904 or email: Places confirmed on receipt of payment.
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Tote bags




Glass & light

Fri 29 January: 10.15 – 12.00

Discover new ways of working at this artist led workshop. Draw in mixed media to capture the beautiful qualities of light and reflection.
£10. Booking essential, tel: 01223 332904 or email: Places confirmed on receipt of payment.
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Artist-led CPD for primary school teachers

Thurs 14 January, 3 March, 21 April & 16 June: 14.00 – 17.00

Work with artists from AccessArt to refresh your creative energy and find inspiration to enrich your own practice and try new activities and approaches in your school or as part of a trip to a museum.

The focus of this four session course is line and shape. The hands-on sessions will include drawing, making and using sketchbooks, working in 3D, and printmaking.
£25 per session. Booking essential, tel: 01223 332904 or email: Places confirmed on receipt of payment.
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Drawing on Childhood

Opens 22 January 2016
The Foundling Museum, London

Drawing on Childhood brings together the work of major illustrators from the eighteenth-century to the present day, who created powerful images of characters in fiction who are orphaned, adopted, fostered or found. Displaying original drawings and illustrated editions the exhibition explores how illustrators of different generations, chose key moments in stories from European folklore and fiction to bring these child heroes to life.
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Picture from Peter Pan


General admission to the Fitzwilliam Museum is FREE

For full details of all events and workshops, visit our website at

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All images © Fitzwilliam Museum, Cambridge, unless otherwise stated


1, 6, 7, 8, 11 & 12. © Martin Bond
2. Ronald Searle (1920-2011), Molesworth © The estate of Ronald Searle
5. View of Kettle’s Yard house. Photo: Paul Alitt
9. Ronald Searle (1920-2011), Cat lecturing in a gallery, 1998 © The estate of Ronald Searle
10. © Linda (Flickr Creative Commons)
13. Detail from Mabel Lucie Atwell, from Peter Pan and Wendy by JM Barrie, 1921 © Lucie Attwell Ltd