Kendal Museum is hosting Beatrix Potter’s Inspiring Legacy, an exhibition of artwork which inspired Beatrix Potter and artwork which has been inspired by her, while also exploring her scientific legacy as a fungi expert and sheep breeder.
It includes 12 pages from The Tale of One Bad Rat by award-winning graphic novelist Bryan Talbot, a powerful story about child abuse, originally published as a four-issue comic book limited series by Dark Horse Comics in 1994 and later brought out in a collected edition.
The exhibition may well prove inspiration for some considering entering the Lakes International Comic Art Festival’s Beatrix Potter Re-Imagined Competition, which is open to entires until 1st September 2016 – it’s certainly inspired local youngsters, who have been beavering away at their own Potter-inpsired art in tie-in workshops at the Museum.
“Kendal Museum have a great reputation in the field of natural sciences, and this informed our ideas for this exhibition,” says Freelance Curator Jamie Barnes who has put the exhibition together, which aims to show another side to the much-loved author.
“Beatrix Potter’s legacy as a children’s author is well-known, but in this exhibition we are focussing more on her scientific achievements in the world of mycology and farming, as well as showing her effect on contemporary artists.”
The exhibition will contain five main elements: Beatrix Potter’s personal collection of paintings by artists she admired – loaned by Kendal Town Council, some original Potter illustrations of fungi from The Armitt, contemporary work by eight artists who are inspired by Beatrix Potter, a display regarding her work as Herdwick breeder from the University of York and illustrations by children from Heron Hill School.
In addition to Bryan, the contemporary artists on show include Fiona Clucas, Daniel Cooper and Beverley White. The explanatory text has been supplied by Carlisle-based art historian Dr David Cross and the exhibition has been sponsored by Kendal Town Council and Temple Heelis Solicitors.