Lowry painting of Berwick to go on display in Northumberland town for the first time

A painting by renowned artist LS Lowry is to go on permanent display in Berwick for the first time.

Wednesday, 7th April 2021, 3:02 pm

His ‘Beach Scene’, which depicts the beach and sand dunes in Spittal, will be displayed at Berwick Museum and Art Gallery.

It was purchased for Museums Northumberland’s collections with the support of Art Fund, the Arts Council England/V&A Purchase Grant Fund, The Friends of Berwick and District Museum and Archives, and the Guild of Freemen of the town of Berwick-upon-Tweed.

Lowry was a regular visitor to the area from the mid-1930s until the summer before his death in 1976. During that time he created more than 30 sketches, drawings and paintings of Berwick-upon-Tweed.

Lowry's 'Beach Scene' is to go on permanent display at Berwick Museum and Art Gallery. Picture: Museums Northumberland

Rowan Brown, chief executive of Museums Northumberland, said: “Lowry is probably best known for his industrial landscapes of the North West, but many people don’t know he also produced many paintings of the North East coast, and in particular Berwick-upon-Tweed.

“Despite there being up to 30 drawings and paintings of Berwick-upon-Tweed by Lowry, none have ever been on permanent display in the town. We’re thrilled that local people and visitors will now have to opportunity to enjoy the work of one of England’s most iconic artists in the coastal town that inspired him throughout his long career.”

It was among 19 works by Lowry which went up for auction in July 2020 at Christie's first standalone Lowry sale.

Julia Brettell, National Programmes Lead at the V&A, said: “Considering the affection that Lowry had for Berwick, it is surprising that he was not already represented in the museum’s collection. This view of Spittal will be easily accessible to audiences interested in both the artist and the local area.”

Jim Evans, vice chairman of the Guild of Freemen, added: “It is a great pleasure to see an original LS Lowry painting finding a permanent home in Berwick.”

Lowry’s long connection with Berwick was commemorated in 2004 with the opening of The Lowry Trail which visits many of the sites and locations of Lowry’s drawings and paintings of the area.

Berwick Preservation Trust now plans extend the trail to include the cliffs at Spittal and erect another information board there.

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