An exhibition of stunning artwork to celebrate 150 years of the Bolton School of the Arts opens this month.

The prestigious Commemorative Exhibition will be held in the beautiful, newly refurbished Bolton Museum Temporary Exhibitions Gallery from September 22.

It will be the launch event for the Gallery and a chance for the Bolton School of the Arts to celebrate the remarkable achievements of graduates, staff and students.

It will cover a wide range of historic and current works, along with information about the university and town, demonstrating how the Bolton School of the Arts has altered and developed over the decades in response to the changes in Bolton’s economy and community.

Artists invited to take part in this exhibition have been carefully selected as distinctive and talented creative practitioners who have gone on to achieve significantly in their field.

Bolton School of the Arts has produced a host of successful alumni over the years who have been taught and encouraged by skilled and dedicated academic and technical staff.

Lonsdale Bonner, the oldest living contributing artist, was born in 1926 and was a tutor at the Bolton College of Art in the 1950s and 1960s.

Lonsdale is a renowned artist whose former students include famous Bolton steeplejack Fred Dibnah and Donald Jackson, a calligrapher and illuminator who went on to become Official Scribe to the Queen.

Michael Brennand-Wood is an internationally-renowned textile artist and examples of his work can be seen in major public, corporate and private collections worldwide, including the Victoria and Albert Museum. The School of the Arts exhibition features two of his large pieces.

Tracey Shelton is an award-winning Australian journalist for the news site Global Post. In 2012, her photographs of a Syrian tank attack on rebel fighters in Aleppo gained significant attention from mainstream and social media. She also covered the Libyan Civil War and obtained exclusive footage of Muammar Gaddafi’s death, which led to a UN enquiry.

Their combined achievements have had significant impact on the Arts and the Creative and Digital Industries in the town, the region, the country and the world.

Sam Johnson, Head of the Bolton School of Arts, said:

“From its earliest beginnings to the present day, the School of the Arts has served and enriched Bolton’s community, providing inspiration, skills and knowledge to generations of aspirational designers and artists.

This exhibition enables the university and the Museum and Library Service to acknowledge their tremendous pasts, whilst looking to enhance their active partnership into the future.

You are warmly invited to view the remarkable variety of works produced by alumni, students and staff in this beautiful setting and find out more about how the School can support emerging artistic talent today.”

The exhibition runs until December 31.

The museum is open from 09:00 to 17:00 Monday, Tuesday, Thursday, Friday and Saturday, 09:30 to 17:00 on Wednesday and 10:00 to 16:00 on Sunday.

The gallery is situated on the top floor and is fully accessible.


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