2019 is the bicentenary of the visionary art critic, writer, artist and thinker John Ruskin (8 Feb 1819 – 20 Jan 1900). There are a number of exhibitions, lectures, conferences, community projects and other events taking place in the UK and internationally throughout the year in celebration and acknowledgement of the lasting impact of this unique 19th century polymath.
Birmingham School of Art is delighted to join in the celebration, with a series of talks and events uncovering John Ruskin’s legacy in Birmingham. These celebrate the interconnections of art, nature, politics and well-being.
Upcoming events involving Birmingham School of Art include:
Art after Nature: Days of Future Past
29 April – 17 May 2019
An exhibition of contemporary artworks created by current Birmingham School of Art students in response to nineteenth century art critic John Ruskin, and his prescient nature-centric ecological vision. This exhibition will be helped across Birmingham School of Art and Birmingham Midlands Institute.
Celebrating Imperfection: John Ruskin and the Creative Arts in the 21st century
17 May 2019
Marking the University’s 175th anniversary year, Birmingham School of Art celebrates is Ruskinian heritage through a one-day conference reappraising Ruskin’s legacies for contemporary art, ecology and culture.
Ruskin in Birmingham trail
May 2019 – March 2020
This heritage trail links Birmingham’s Ruskinian institutions, for while Ruskin visited the city only once his legacy still resonates. Delivered in collaboration with Argent College / Ruskin Mill Trust.
Open Heritage Week: Ruskin at Highbury Hall
15 – 20 September 2019
Birmingham School of Art presents a Ruskin-themed exhibition, together with related creative workshops and guided tours at Hughbury Hall (a Ruskinian ‘sister building’). Delivered in collaboration with Chamberlain Highbury Trust.
26 October 2019
A study day organised by Birmingham Midlands Institute in collaboration with Birmingham School of Art. Venue to be confirmed.
Art after Nature’s Future: John Ruskin’s Legacy for the Contemporary World and its Art (TBC)
6 January – 16 March 2020
This newly commissioned Birmingham School of Art exhibition brings Ruskin’s ecological utopianism into the current moment via a contemporary art trail and associated events. Artist-curated by Franziska Schenk in collaboration with partners across the city.
Ruskin’s Environmental Legacy for Contemporary Art Ecologies
8 February 2020
Birmingham School of Art opens its doors to all for an ecology-themed celebratory day marking Ruskin’s birthday and the end of the Ruskin 200 year.
All events are free and open to the general public.
You can download the Birmingham Ruskin trail map here, which also explains events going on around the city.
For more information, you can visit the John Ruskin 200 website, or use the #Ruskin200 on all social media channels.