Happy New Year from the Shropshire Art Society!

It’s a brand new year, and we are looking forward to a wonderfully full and creative 2013 for the Shropshire Art Society. We ended our 2012 activities with a thoroughly enjoyable excursion to Birmingham and we’d like to share a little report of it here to tempt you to join us on any new gallery trips and social events that we announce over the year ahead. Meanwhile we wish all our members a very Happy New Year!

Collage of SAS Birmingham Gallery Day Trip 2012
A festive visit to Birmingham enjoyed by all!

On Tuesday 11th December, after a 9.15am start from Shrewsbury and a Wellington pick-up, our party of nearly fifty members and friends was soon having coffee in the welcoming foyer of the Barber Institute on the University Campus in Edgbaston. We were then able to enjoy pictures on display from its own rich collection and to view the Special Exhibition, ‘In Front of Nature’, featuring the work of Thomas Fearnley, a Norwegian painter with British connections, living in the first half of the 19th century. He travelled extensively across Britain and the Continent, seeking out and capturing its more dramatic scenery. As we left, a member commented that this was probably the best smaller gallery in the whole of the UK.

Just after midday, our coach took us to the Birmingham Museum & Art Gallery where an arrangement of very attractively laid out tables awaited us in their splendid Edwardian Tea Room. Here we enjoyed an excellent Christmas lunch, now an annual feature on the SAS calendar, before setting out to explore the riches of Birmingham’s major gallery and museum, the BM&AG. Most of us headed straight for the magnificent adjoining Gas Hall which was housing ‘Revealed’, a breath taking selection of works from the Government Art Collection. The items on display represented only a fraction of this major, very widely dispersed, collection, started in 1898 and designed to promote British art and history while contributing to cultural diplomacy. The items displayed had been chosen by Government ministers, senior administrators, cleaners and catering staff working in embassies, ministries and even No 10 Downing Street. The number, quality and range of the items displayed and the personal comments from the individuals who had been involved in choosing the artefacts for display, made this an unforgettable experience.

Soon it was time for a well deserved cup of tea, a quick visit to the Gallery shop and for some a snooze as the coach carried us safely back to Shropshire. What a great start to the festive season.

We look forward to making a similar trip in 2013!