Abbot Hall Art Gallery
Kendal, Cumbria LA9 5AL
The Gallery is housed in one of Kendal's most important buildings, a Grade I listed villa, on the banks of the River Kent. The galleries offer two floors of light-filled spaces in which to see art.
Abbot Hall has a comprehensive collection of George Romney's work. His paintings are hung in the elegant historical settings for which they were painted, amongst fine 18th-century furniture and porcelain.
Watercolours are shown in a small gallery reminiscent of a collector's private room, with regularly changing displays that allow a Turner to be seen alongside a Ruskin or a Constable sketch next to works by the likes of Cotman, Cozens and Edward Lear.
Abbot Hall has been one of the most active galleries collecting British art in recent years and important works have been acquired, ranging from a Turner watercolour of Windermere to portraits by Stanley Spencer and abstract paintings by Bridget Riley and Sean Scully. Abbot Hall has also secured some spectacular long-term loans, including works by Constable, L. S. Lowry and Lucian Freud.
As well as a fine permanent collection, Abbot Hall is acknowledged as having one of the most imaginative and independently minded temporary exhibition programmes outside London.