Interior at Furlongs (1939)

Interior at Furlongs (1939)

Going Modern / Being British examines the life and work of Eric Ravilious: war artist, modernist, and devout chronicler of British life. Recently described by Paul Laity in the Guardian as “more popular than ever”, Ravilious's watercolours “seem to sum up mid-century England. But the secret of their appeal lies partly in their complex relationship with modernism”.

This exhibition puts Ravilious at the heart of an on-going, but no less fascinating, debate that explores the roots of British Modernism and places this marginalised artist firmly back within the art historical canon of great British artists alongside his one-time teacher Paul Nash. Going Modern / Being British follows Ravilious’s relationship with the social, cultural and geological landscape of Britain throughout the 1920s and 1930s exploring the duality of his romantic modernism. With an ever-increasing appetite for the re-discovery of home-grown heroes, Going Modern / Being British is an opportunity to uncover this absorbing approach to Being British.


Book Launch: The Travelling Artist (Ravilious in Pictures Series) by James Russell, published by Mainstone Press
10 March 2012

Bristol was among the various stops on Ravilious’s travels, who followed in the tradition of many artists by journeying to the city to capture the bustling docks and industrial shipyard. It was Paul Nash’s younger brother John who first brought Ravilious here, capturing his friend’s imagination with the old-world charm of the paddle steamers dormant in dock.

Illustrated talk on Ravilious by author James Russell
24 March 2012

The Ravilious in Pictures series is published by Mainstone Press, who have produced a number of beautifully illustrated books focusing on British artists from the 1920s, 30s and 40s. For more information on the newest publication see

To find out more about author James Russell please visit Russell’s blog.

Please download an Exhibition Briefing here.

Exhibition: 10 March - 29 April 2012

Admission prices