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December 2016



 Advent calendar

To mark the count down to this year’s seasonal celebrations, we have created an animated advent calendar. Doors will be opened from the beginning of December on Facebook and Twitter to reveal festive scenes in our collection. And at the beginning of each week we will post a picture of the previous weeks opened doors, so you can see ‘at a glance’ what you may have missed.



The Founder's Library

The final Object of the Month for our bicentennial year is the Founder's Library, which opens to the public for the first time in December.

Learn more about this magnificent space in the heart of the museum in a special film available to view on our website next week.

 Founder's Library



Behind closed doors: A glimpse of the Founder's Library

Dec 2,7,9,14,16,17,18 & 21

Accompanied visits of 20 minutes will be avaliable on these dates at 13.00 and 13.30.

Curators and conservators will be on hand to talk about the library and to present a selection of its treasures. Numbers will be limited to 15 per session. 
> More

Founder's libary



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

Illuminated manusript

Contemporary print by Susan Aldworth

COLOUR: The art and science of illuminated manuscripts

Extended until 2 January 2017
Adeane & Mellon Galleries (12 & 13)

COLOUR showcases 150 exceptional manuscripts from the Fitzwilliam's collection - the finest and largest museum collection of illuminated manuscripts in existence. Travel from 8th century Northumbria to 17th century Nepal and see unique works ranging from a Parisian medieval encyclopaedia to the ABC of a five-year-old princess, and local treasures like the Macclesfield Psalter.
> More

Realisation: Recent works by Susan Aldworth and Jane Dixon

Until 5 February 2017
Shiba Gallery (14)

This exhibition challenges our assumptions of reality. Susan Aldworth's works, resist identification, yet they are etchings from the physical touch of human brain tissue. Jane Dixon's photograms, appear to be records of real organic forms, but are actually imaginary and drawn by the artist.
> More




Gallery 3

Founders print album

Celebrating the First 200 Years: The Fitzwilliam Museum 1816 - 2016

Until 30 December
Octagon Gallery (10)

Running throughout 2016, this exhibition explores the Fitzwilliam’s past, present and future.

The exhibition runs alongside a new book The Fitzwilliam Museum: A History. For the very first time, this tells the full 200 year story of the Museum.
> More

An Amateur's Passion: Lord Fitzwilliam's print collection

Until 29 January 2017
Charrington Print Room (16)

The albums of prints on show are rarely seen in public and offer a facinating insight in to the mind of an 18th century collector.
> More

 Being Modern installation

 Henry Moore sculpture

Being Modern: Kettle’s Yard at the Fitzwilliam Museum

Until March 2017
European Pottery Gallery (27)

This second display from Kettle's Yard brings together for the first time, paintings and sculptures by pioneering modern artists who are represented in both collections. Find out more about Kettle’s Yard and their collection on their website.
> More

Henry Moore’s Hill Arches (1973)

Until November 2017
Front lawn

With Hill Arches, Moore has created a landscape in its own right – perhaps, as the title suggests, an echo of the rolling hills of his native Yorkshire. This sculpture from the Henry Moore Foundation, will be on the front lawn of the Museum until the end of next year.
> More


 Tiffany vase

The Dollar: The rise of global currency

Until 26 February 2017

The Arts of the Near East (33)

The dollar is found the world over. It is familiar to us as the money of the United States, but dollars are also the currency of many other nations around the globe. The objects in this display explore the history of one of the world’s most iconic currencies.
> More

The Frua-Valsecchi collection

Over the next few months see over 130 pieces of works of art from Francesca and Massimo Valsecchi introduced to the galleries, on long term loan. Pieces on display include the nude portrait of Patricia Preece by Stanley Spencer, William Burges’s painted ‘Flax and Wool’ cabinet, Art Nouveau Tiffany glass, metalwork and ceramics designed by Christopher Dresser and an extremely rare Meissen porcelain vulture. All the pieces can be identified by their specially designed labels.
> More



 Gallery tour

Tour of the Museum

Saturdays: 14.30 - 15.30

A one-hour tour of the collections with a Cambridge Badge Guide. Tickets may be bought from the Guide or in advance through Cambridge Visitor Information Centre, tel. 01223 791501, email:
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Free, 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.

The Castle Howard cabinets and other bicentenary acquisitions

Wed 7 Dec: 13.15 – 14.00

Tim Knox, Director
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 Castle Howard cabinets



 Jane Dixon drawing

ReSource: Mental Mind

Sat 17 Dec: 11.00 – 13.00

13 - 18 yrs

Imagination and the mind inspire contemporary print artists like Susan Aldworth and Jane Dixon, whose work can be seen in the Museum's Realisation exhibition. Follow in their footsteps and explore your creative mind in print using gold and silver embellishments on intaglio prints with artist Lucy Mazur.
£5. Booking essential, tel: 01223 332904 or email:
> More



Family First Saturday

Sat 3 Dec: 14.00 - 16.00

Drop-in on the first Saturday of the month and join us for a 'Winter wonderland' of activities and art-making! Family tours with one of our educators will also run at 14.15 & 15.15. Tours last 30 minutes, number restrictions apply.
Free, no booking required
> More

 Christmas bauble



Drinks in Gallery 3

An outstanding museum needs exceptional supporters. Since 1909, the Friends of the Fitzwilliam has enabled hundreds of outstanding works to enter and enrich the Museum's collections.

Why not become a Friend for the New Year, or give a Friends membership to a loved one, and join us for the Friends Christmas Party on 14 December.
> More



Opus Anglicanum: Masterpieces of English Medieval Embroidery

1 October 2016 – 5 February 2017
Victoria and Albert Museum

See the luxury embroideries that England was famed for between the 12th and 15th centuries. Often referred to as ‘Opus Anglicanum’ (English work), featuring spectacular, intricately crafted imagery, they were prized by royalty across Europe.
Book now


 The Steeple Aston Cope

Feeding the 400

23 September 2016 – 8 January 2017
The Foundling Museum, London

Based on new research, this exhibition explores the multi-faceted impact that food and eating regimes had on children at the Foundling Hospital from 1740 to 1950, through art, archival material, photographs and the voices of former pupils.
> More information & to book

 Orphan girls entering the refectory of a hospital

Our bicentenary is supported by our Business Partners:
TTP Group plc, ACE Cultural Tours, Hewitsons LLP, Marshall of Cambridge, Rheebridge Ltd and Sotheby’s

General admission to the Fitzwilliam Museum is FREE

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

RSS  Get regular updates from The Fitzwilliam Museum's website by subscribing to our RSS Feeds. For more information, see our website

All images © Fitzwilliam Museum, Cambridge, unless otherwise stated

5. Susan Aldworth, Passing Thoughts, 2013 (detail) © The artist
8. Photo courtesy of Paul Allitt
9. Hill Arches, 1973, bronze. The Henry Moore Foundation: gift of the artist 1977. Reproduced by permission of the Henry Moore Foundation.
12 & 16
© Martin Bond
14. Jane Dixon, Drawing for Evidence of Doubt (detail), 2011-13.
© The Artist. Given by the Friends of the Fitzwilliam Museum with a contribution from the Chadwyck-Healey Charitable Trust, 2013.
17. The Steeple Aston Cope, 1330-40 (detail). The Rector and Churchwardens of St Peter and St Paul, Steeple Aston, Oxfordshire. On long term loan to the Victoria and Albert Museum, London.
18. Image courtesy of the Foundling Museum.