Turning to See: From Van Dyck to Lucian Freud

28 May 2016 – 4 Sep 2016

Event times

Monday-Thursday 10am-5pm
Friday 10.30am-5pm
Saturday-Sunday 10am-5pm

Cost of entry


Birmingham Museum and Art Gallery

Birmingham, United Kingdom


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Acquired for the nation in 2014, Sir Anthony van Dyck’s last self-portrait takes centre stage in this striking exhibition exploring the concepts of physical and metaphorical turning in portraiture.


This is the first ever exhibition curated by West Midlands born and internationally renowned artist, John Stezaker, who takes Van Dyck’s dramatic turned pose as his starting point.

Showcasing major loans from the National Portrait Gallery alongside highlights from Birmingham’s collection, the display will create a spectacle of turning in the gallery and will mirror the way the viewer moves around the space.

From Rembrandt and Rossetti to Picasso and Bomberg, 'Turning to See' is filled with celebrated names from art history. There’s also the chance to view new collages by Stezaker and fragile works on paper not normally on display, such as Burne-Jones’ sketches for the Pygmalion series from Birmingham’s collection.

Organised in collaboration with the National Portrait Gallery, with support from the Art Fund and the Heritage Lottery Fund.


John Stezaker

Exhibiting artists

Dante Gabriel Rossetti

Sarah Lucas

Sarah Lucas

Rembrandt Van Rijn

Henri Gaudier-Brzeska

John Everett Millais

Louise Bourgeois

Pablo Picasso

Pablo Picasso

Lucian Freud

Helen Chadwick

Man Ray

Gustave Courbet

Augustus John

John Stezaker

David Bomberg

Edward Burne-Jones

Frank Auerbach

Aubrey Beardsley

Anthony van Dyck

Gillian Wearing

Gillian Wearing

Taking part

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