Brush Strokes

Fine art detail (image/jpeg)

This section of the site explores the stories about works of art held across the museum service, from the 17th century right through to the 20th century. It also includes an insight into the early years of the Ferens Art Gallery, and the work of Harry Hudson Rodmell who produced wonderful poster designs for advertising the great cruise liners which sailed out of Hull.

Peter Howson Peter Howson

Peter Howson is one of Britain's most important contemporary artists and the country's most recent Official War Artist. Although born in London in 1958, Howson is commonly associated with the new 'Glasgow Boys', a group of figurative artists who rose to fame during the 1970s and '80s.

Objects in the collection

Fred Elwell Fred Elwell

Frederick William Elwell was born in 1870 in Beverley, a market town situated seven miles from Hull. His father James was a cabinet-maker, and it is to him that Fred owed his high standards of achievement and his love of craftsmanship. Fred began to study art at evening classes at the Lincoln School of Art. In 1887 he won a scholarship which enabled him to embark upon full time studies. It was during his period at Lincoln that he developed an interest in the work of the French Impressionist painters.

Objects in the collection

Late 18th and early 19th British and European Landscapes Late 18th and early 19th British and European Landscapes

Read on to discover how the genre of landscapes developed in eighteenth and nineteenth century Britain and Europe.

Objects in the collection

Dutch 17th Century Landscapes Dutch 17th Century Landscapes

The Ferens Art Gallery collection has a particularly good representation of the 17th century Dutch landscape tradition. Read on to find out more about how this genre developed and who was involved.

Objects in the collection

Rembrandt Drawing Rembrandt Drawing

A master of 17th century Dutch art, this Rembrandt drawing is a rare example of the artist's work.

Objects in the collection

Early 20th Century British Art - The Rise of Modernism Early 20th Century British Art - The Rise of Modernism

The period of British Art dating from the turn of the 20th century, marked the rise of modernism in response to the influences of French Impressionism and reaction against the Art establishment in the form of the Salon in Paris and the Royal Academy in London. This gave rise to the various movements into which impressionism divided through the works of Cezanne, Degas, Renoir, Van Gogh, Gauguin. It also led to the recognition of 'Post-Impressionism' and the ideas and methods of European modernism from Fauvism to Cubism.

Objects in the collection

Early 20th Century British Art - Between the Wars Early 20th Century British Art - Between the Wars

After the devastation of WWI, radical movements in art had retreated to more conservative forms that celebrated the local and familiar, representing a national character in relation to European art movements. However, some developments were completely original responses to the art that had gone before and an attempt to encompass the state of the natural and human world as it appeared to British artists of the time. This led to new forms of visual expression that represented the cutting edge of the Art World at the outbreak of WWII.

Objects in the collection

Early 20th Century British Art - Artists Groups Early 20th Century British Art - Artists Groups

From the creation of 'Post-Impressionism' by Roger Fry in London, further groups began to form around the studios of particular artists, following the example of the leading independent artists in France. It is from this point that London began to contribute to the direction and development of modernism on an equal footing with Paris, with radical artists moving easily between both cities.

Objects in the collection

All At Sea Part 1 All At Sea Part 1

Discover the history behind Ferens' marine paintings; from Dutch influences to the depiction of the whaling industry.

Objects in the collection

All At Sea Part 2 All At Sea Part 2

Discover the history behind Ferens' marine paintings. Learn about John Ward, or the official war artists of the Second World War, and how post war artists are still inspired by the sea.

Objects in the collection

Fred Elwell's 'The Wedding Dress' Part 1 Fred Elwell's 'The Wedding Dress' Part 1

Fred Elwell's 'The Wedding Dress' is on display in the Ferens Art Gallery. Discover the story behind the painting.

Objects in the collection

Fred Elwell's 'The Wedding Dress' Part 2 Fred Elwell's 'The Wedding Dress' Part 2

Fred Elwell's 'The Wedding Dress' is on display in the Ferens Art Gallery. Discover the story behind the painting.

Objects in the collection

Purchasing for the People! Vincent Galloway Part 1 Purchasing for the People! Vincent Galloway Part 1

Read about Vincent Galloway - Ferens Art Gallery's first and longest serving curator. Discover how he helped build up the Gallery's extensive collections.

Objects in the collection

Purchasing for the People! Vincent Galloway Part 2 Purchasing for the People! Vincent Galloway Part 2

Read about Vincent Galloway - Ferens Art Gallery's first and longest serving curator. Discover how he helped build up the Gallery's extensive collections.

Objects in the collection

Harry Hudson Rodmell Harry Hudson Rodmell

Hull born artist Harry Rodmell, taking inspiration from his maritime surroundings, became one of the country's most prolific maritime painters in the years after the Second World War. The large collection of his work, now aptly cared for in Hull's Maritime Museum, demonstrates his skill and is proof that he was one of the finest graphic designers of the twentieth century.

Objects in the collection

A Preface to the Transport Poster A Preface to the Transport Poster

Poster design has changed through the years but their purpose has always been to catch the eye of the passer by. Read on to learn about early poster design, how they developed and why they became important to railway and shipping companies.

Objects in the collection