Contemporary Art Society Displays at the Whitechapel Gallery: Nothing Beautiful Unless Useful

17 September 2013—1 December 2013


Whitechapel Gallery
77-82 Whitechapel High St
London, E1 7QX United Kingdom

020 7522 7888


1st display in a series of Contemporary Art Society displays at the Whitechapel Gallery looking at the role of philanthropy in shaping public collections across the UK.

Nothing Beautiful Unless Useful investigates the relationship between art and social reform in the late 19th and 20th centuries, the story being told through three remarkable organisations – Thomas Horsfall’s Manchester Art Museum, Leeds Art Club and Mass Observation.

Including watercolours by John Ruskin and works by William Holman Hunt and Eric Gill, the display also includes artist designed ‘Pilkington Pots’ alongside photographs by Humphrey Spender setting the social and cultural context.

Exploring the theme of art and philanthropy, this year-long series of displays seeks out the treasures of regional museums and galleries, the first being curated by ACE Curatorial Fellow, Anna Colin, in collaboration with the Contemporary Art Society and the Whitechapel Gallery.


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