The National Gallery’s 2019 Masterpiece Tour, generously sponsored by Christie’s, will launch at the Victoria Art Gallery in Bath, where Nicolas Poussin’s much-loved The Triumph of Pan (1636) from the National Gallery collection will go on display from 11 April.
The Triumph of Pan shows a mythical celebration with nymphs and satyrs revelling before a statue of Pan, the god of woods and fields. The picture was commissioned by the notorious Cardinal de Richelieu and dispatched from Rome to Paris in May 1636. With its companion, The Triumph of Bacchus (Kansas City, Nelson-Atkins Museum of Art), it was designed to form part of the decoration of the Cabinet du Roi in the Château de Richelieu.
Opened in 1900, the Victoria Art Gallery is run by Bath & North East Somerset Council and boasts an outstanding collection of paintings, sculpture, and decorative arts, spanning the 15th century to the present day. The collection includes works by many artists who have lived and worked in the Bath area, such as Thomas Gainsborough and Walter Sickert. Admission to the permanent displays is free and the gallery hosts an exciting programme of temporary exhibitions, as well as talks, behind the scenes tours, children’s activities and more.
The Triumph of Pan will be shown in Bath alongside favourite works from the Victoria Art Gallery’s own collection and alongside a wide range of artists including Thomas Malton, Jean Claude Nattes and Grayson Perry. The display will explore the relevance of the Classical in art and design and reflect on Bath's Roman and Georgian heritage.
Nina Cahill, Curatorial Fellow of Paintings 1600–1800 at the National Gallery, London will talk about Nicolas Poussin’s exuberant Bacchanal at the Guildhall, Bath on 22 May. Tickets are available from the Bath Box Office website.
The Triumph of Pan will be on display in Bath until 7 July 2019. The Masterpiece Tour will then travel to York Art Gallery (12 July - 22 September 2019) and Auckland Castle (5 October 2019 - 5 January 2020).