Tuesday - Saturday 10am - 5pm
11am - 4pm from 1st November

Closed Sundays, Mondays and Bank Holidays
(unless otherwise stated)

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For details of previous Galleries Exhibitions - click here


Shirley Craven and Hull TradersShirley Craven and Hull Traders
Revolutionary Post-War Fabrics and Furniture

Hull Traders was a visionary post-war textile company spearheaded by award-winning designer Shirley Craven. Her big bold abstracts in eye-popping colours capture all the exuberance of the swinging sixties.
Celebrating Craven’s creative partnership with Hull Traders and curated by leading design historian, Lesley Jackson, author of the major new book accompanying the show, this ground-breaking touring exhibition, organised by the Ferens Art Gallery in Hull, is on show at King’s Lynn Arts Centre from 18 September – 30 October 2010.
To coincide with this we are offering a truly unique opportunity to recapture the aspirations of this optimistic period and to hear from some key figures including Shirley Craven and Althea McNish.

SYMPOSIUM - £25 (£22 concessions) including lunch
Kings Lynn Arts Centre, Wednesday 20th October 

10.45 – 11.15     Arrivals & coffee in Shakespeare Barn

11.15 – 12.00     Lesley Jackson (Writer, Curator & Design Historian)
Shirley Craven and Hull Traders: A visionary enterprise
                        Guildhall Theatre

12.00 – 12.45     Keith Albarn
Furnishing the Alternative Environment of the Sixties
Guildhall Theatre

12.45– 1.45        Lunch in Shakespeare Barn
& independent viewing of exhibition
1.45 – 2.45        Shirley Craven in Conversation with Lesley Jackson
Guildhall Theatre

 2.45 – 3.30       Althea McNish in Conversation with John Weiss
Guildhall Theatre

3.30 – 4.15        Tea in Shakespeare Barn
& independent viewing of exhibition 
(Lesley Jackson will be available informally for questions)

Booking information

Tickets available from King’s Lynn Arts Centre on 01553 779095
Limited capacity, so please book early to avoid disappointment.
(Please make us aware of any dietary requirements.)
King’s Lynn Arts Centre, 29 King Street, King’s Lynn, Norfolk PE30 1HA
The Guildhall auditorium can accommodate one wheelchair user per performance. Access via a stair climber is available first come first served.
A Hull Museums Exhibition

Shirley Craven and Hull TradersShirley Craven
Born in Hull in 1934 and trained at Hull College of Art and the Royal College of Art, Shirley Craven was the most original printed textile designer of her generation.
After teaming up with Hull Traders in 1959, she played a pivotal role in the company for the next 20 years, creating over 40 arresting patterns. As colour and design consultant she was responsible for shaping their entire collection and had complete artistic control.
Strongly graphic and visually inventive, Craven’s designs are impossible to pigeonhole. More like paintings than conventional furnishing fabrics, their bold compositions, gigantic repeats and inspired colourways are unique in the history of pattern design. 

Lesley Jackson
Lesley Jackson is an independent writer, curator and design historian specialising in 20th century design. She is the curator of Shirley Craven and Hull Traders and the author of the accompanying book. Her previous books include: From Atoms to Patterns – Crystal Structure Designs from the 1951 Festival of Britain (Richard Dennis, 2008); 20th Century Pattern Design (Mitchell Beazley, 2002); Robin and Lucienne Day (Mitchell Beazley, 2001); 20th Century Factory Glass (Mitchell Beazley, 2000); The Sixties – Decade of Design Revolution (Phaidon, 1998); ‘Contemporary’ Architecture and Interiors of the 1950s (Phaidon, 1994); The New Look – Design in the Fifties (Thames & Hudson, 1991). She has curated exhibitions for many leading organisations including the Wellcome Collection, Barbican Art Gallery, British Council and Crafts Council. She is currently writing a book on Alastair Morton and Edinburgh Weavers for the V&A.

Keith Albarn
Keith Albarn, began his career by working in the theatre, then formed 26 Kingly Street, Environmental Design Consultants whose work included ‘Ekistikit’ (modular furniture and building systems) and exhibitions including contributing to ‘Serendipity’ (I.C.A. London ’70), producing ‘World of Islam’ (I.C.A.’74, Islamathematica for Rotterdam ’75) and ‘Illusion in Art and Science’ (I.C.A.’76 and New York ’77). Meanwhile, he was drawn into teaching, eventually appointed Head of School of Art, Design and Media at Colchester.
His publications include ‘Language of Pattern’,  ‘Diagram-the instrument of thought’, and contributions to ‘Teaching Art and Mathematics’ and Pattern and Belief [in hand!].
As an artist he has exhibited installations, sculpture and prints throughout his career.

Althea McNish
Althea McNish is a Trinidad & Tobago born British artist and designer. She came to Britain in 1951 where she trained in both architecture and graphics. By the time that she left the Royal College of Art in the late 1950s she was a textile designer, and became one of the generation of young British designers that were able to breathe new life onto Post War textiles. The first black designer in the British textile industry, McNish was extremely successful. Her earliest clients included Liberty, Ascher and Hull Traders, for whom she created eight stunning patterns.


60s Design School Saturdays
Old Warehouse | 10am - 3pm | 16yrs+ | £28 (£25) each session | Bookings on 01553 764864

3D designer and sculptor Ben Emerson will lead a workshop in which you will be encouraged to revive the 60s trend for cardboard furniture by transforming cardboard packaging into exciting new pieces to take home.

Textile artist Inge-Lise Greaves explores the ways that abstract textile designs can
be developed from a range of starting points. Participants in this workshop will develop their own textile designs ideas using drawing, collage and pigments.

One of the hallmarks of the Hull Traders textiles was that they were screen printed by hand. In this workshop you will explore some of the simplest ways of using screen printing and will produce some experimental short lengths of textile using paper stencils and transparent colours.


Wacky Wednesday Lunchtime Lectures
Red Barn Gallery | 12.30pm - 1.30pm | £6 (£5) each session | Bookings on 01553 764864

Anne Roberts provides a worldwide context for Hull Traders over three consecutive Wednesdays.

ABSTRACTION IN THE 50s and 60s22 September - ABSTRACTION IN THE 50S & 60S
American and European abstract painters with differing connections to Hull Traders’ designs.

Sources for Pop Art in England and the USA.

3D and printmaking from Paolozzi and Rauschenberg to Oldenburg.


Paper Dress Competition
Eligible: 11- 16yrs | Deadline for entries Thursday 21 October

A spectacular 60s sensation, paper dresses were originally used as a marketing gimmick for a paper towel company before catching on as a cheap and disposable fashion item! To enter, design your own paper dress inspired by Hull Traders exhibition or your own research into the 60s. Present your design on two A3 sheets, one showing research and development of ideas and the other showing the fi nal design. The winners will have their dresses made up and printed and
then photographed on a model. Call 01553 779095 for more information.
PAPER DRESS Exhibition - Designs & Winners Old Warehouse | 26 - 30 October
A chance to eye up the competition in the Paper Dress Competition! All entries submitted are on show and all entrants are invited to the Opening on 26th October where the winners will be announced.


We enter year two of the Aspire project (funded by the Arts Council), an innovative model of shared learning within a temporary community of artists, with renewed energy, some fresh faces and some new partners. We are delighted to announce that Artist, Richard Layzell, is staying on to lead the project as it moves outwards to pervade and engage the local community whilst demonstrating the power of the arts to transform lives.


Quebec Meets East AngliaQuebec Meets East Anglia
13 November - 22 December | Fermoy Gallery

‘Quebec Meets East Anglia’ marks and celebrates a new partnership with Sherie Naidoo of Artlands, dealers in 19th and 21st century Fine Art. This latest in a successful series of exhibitions of the same name comes to King’s Lynn Arts Centre straight from Quebec House in London and brings together two far flung regions that share a rich maritime heritage, wide skies and wonderful light. Featuring mid-career painters, sculptors and makers from both Quebec and East Anglia, including Remi Lacroix, Lisette Tardy, Daniel Simard, Eric Cardosa, Linda Morin, Toby Winteringham and Dennis Hales and providing an opportunity to draw parallels as well as exploring new ideas.


Little White Feather and The HunterLittle White Feather & The Hunter Anna Lucas
13 November - 22 December | Red Barn

Anna Lucas is a London based artist film-maker. Her film, Little White Feather and the Hunter, examines the fact and fiction associated with the myth of Native American Princess Pocahontas. It was commissioned in 2009 (Commissions East) in commemoration of the American connections between Essex and Virginia, USA as part of the Jamestown 400 anniversary of the first permanent English speaking settlement in North America. Using Pocahontas as a virtual guide Anna Lucas travelled around Virginia, USA late in 2007 in search of the ‘truth’. The ensuing single screen film evidences instead the multiplicity of anecdotes gathered from experts and amateurs on both sides of the Atlantic as it investigates and processes a story that has been told and re-told over time and is never quite finite. The ‘myth’ is celebrated locally as John Rolfe was born in Heacham and a portrait of Pocahontas and her young son Thomas hangs in King’s Lynn in the Town Hall Collection.


Leicester Print Works
13 November - 22 December | Shakespeare Barn

After establishing itself in 1986, Leicester Print Workshop has become a centre for fi ne art printmaking offering specialist facilities and teaching. LPW also works in partnership with other venues to organize exhibitions showcasing the diverse range of printmaking techniques practiced by their members. Heralding their fi rst visit to King’s Lynn Arts Centre, the Leicester Print Workshop presents Passion2Print; a freshly selected showcase of larger scale work by artists and printmakers working in the UK today.
Please visit for further details. This exhibition is a collaboration between Leicester Print Workshop and Embrace Arts at Leicester University.


James GledhillJames Gledhill A Stroke of Genius
13 Nov - 22 December | Old Warehouse

James Gledhill fi rst came to the attention of the King’s Lynn Arts Centre in 2008 as part of Different Strokes, a charity dedicated to helping younger stroke survivors regain control of their lives. In that time, James has developed his mark-making skills, adapting his artistic techniques around his disability. Since August of 2009 James has discovered a passion for landscape painting through a series of one-to-one tuition sessions with local artist Jon Parry funded through the Wyss Foundation. His exhibition A Stroke of Genius includes local scenes and buildings as well as some more experimental pieces.


Jasmine DoyJasmine Doy Cupcake Showcase
13 Nov - 22 Dec | Fermoy Foyer Showcase

Since working with textile artist Inge-Lise Greaves for the last 9 months, 15 year old artist Jasmine Doy has developed a body of her own felt-work creations. Through one-to-one contact she has learned skills and techniques with which to fi nd her own creative voice. Using the humble cup cake as a thematic constant, she has assembled a distinctive showcase of textilebased artwork and handmade gift items.


Bookings on 01553 779095

The Big Draw
Beanstalk Frenzy!
Friday 29 & Saturday 30 October | 5 - 10 yrs
Drop in session on the hour 10am, 11am, 12am, 2pm, 3pm
Corn Exchange Balcony | £2 pay on the door

Have you seen the growing beanstalk in the Corn Exchange? Join the Arts Centre’s
creative team for a Jack & The Beanstalk inspired drawing workshop on the balcony of the Corn Exchange. Get arty and creative with a range of different drawing supplies and see your ideas take a GIANT life of their own!

10.30am - 4pm | Shakespeare Barn | £30 inc. materials
and FREE Irish coffee | Bookings on 01553 764864

Christmas Workshops for AdultsSat 4 Dec Credit Crunch Christmas Crafts
It’s time to tighten our belts, but with Christmas looming, why not pull out all the stops and reveal your hidden talents with this warm-hearted session recapturing the skills of hand-making cards and presents with Inge-Lise Greaves. Lots of ideas to make tree decorations, cards and small presents using a range of materials and
recycling! Everything you make, you take!!

Sun 5 Dec Print Making for Christmas
Join artist Nick Sampson for a day of print-making techniques inspired by the current Passion2Print exhibition. Focussing on small-scale prints, Nick will show you how to realise your artistic ideas using a variety of print-making methods. You will get the chance to frame your prints, making an ideal gift for Christmas, or create a motif for greetings cards. All attendees will be invited to enjoy a free festive Irish coffee at the end of the session!

Wed 8 Dec Christmas Basket Crafts
Join basket maker Nadine Anderson for a one day workshop of Christmas decoration creation! Stars, reindeer, angels, hearts and Christmas trees can be made in willow, rush and raffi a. Free festive Irish coffees will be served to all attenders at the end of the workshop to raise some Christmas cheer!


Neil Pittaway - A RetrospectiveNeil Pittaway - A Retrospective
15 January - 26 February | Shakespeare Barn & Red Barn

Neil Pittaway, born in Wakefield, Yorkshire in 1973 is a young British artist whose detailed and complex work, draws predominantly for its inspiration on the city, via a maze of architectural and historic subjects from 18th and 19th century artists Piranesi, Gillray and Cruikshank. This retrospective illustrates how contemporary themes are used to offer a fresh look at heritage and also reflects his commitment to observation whilst journeying across continents absorbing the colour and spirit of a place. A unique opportunity also to view the intricate images that populate some of his 13 leather bound sketchbooks. The youngest member of the Royal Watercolour Society and with work in public and private collections worldwide, Neil has been drawing and painting most of his life, inspired in the first instance perhaps by being runner up in a Blue Peter dinosaur competition when he was only 6!


Jean HillJean Hill 15 January - 26 February | Old Warehouse
Artist, tutor, volunteer and alumni of St Martin’s College, Jean Hill died unexpectedly on 28 February 2010, painting right until the end. This exhibition looks back over 81 years of painting, presenting recurring symbolic themes of birds, water and suits of armour in her recognizable pastel shades of acrylic. Additionally poignant is the location for this retrospective show - the Old Warehouse - the setting for so many workshops during which Jean passed her painting skills on to so many others and the King’s Lynn Arts Centre, where she volunteered in the galleries over many years.


Philip Jones - A RetrospectivePhilip Jones - A Retrospective
15 January - 26 February | Fermoy Gallery

Familiar to regular visitors to the Art Centre’s Eastern Open, Philip Jones was one of Norfolk’s distinguished and unique painters, with his individually abstracted responses to landscape. Jones’ work manipulated shapes in the foreground and background to suggest hills, trees, stone outcrops, or just there for reasons of dynamic composition. Primarily, his painting tended to reflect the dark intensity of his surroundings in Norfolk, but he also took to travelling more widely, simplifying his style and adopting a more vivid colour range, evoking the bright Mediterranean hues of Greece and, even more strikingly, the tropical colours of The Gambia
Educated artistically at The Slade, his first one-man show was in Stockholm in 1965, and chose to wait for his first London solo exhibition until 1986. In his later years, Jones made himself known to the King’s Lynn Arts Centre, regularly contributing the annual Eastern Open competition and winning the Painting Prize in 1993. Sadly, Philip Jones died in December 2008, and it is with great affection that the Fermoy Gallery hosts this retrospective of his work.


Aspire Altered ObjectsAspire Altered Objects
15 January - 26 February | Fermoy Foyer Showcase

A showcase opportunity targeted at the extended community of regional and local artists identified from the Year 2 Aspire workshop & interview process last autumn. Each artist was given a small modest arbitrary object and set the challenge of altering it in a way that revealed something about their usual practice.


42nd Eastern Open 201142nd Eastern Open 2011
Call for Entries and Exhibition
2 April - 21 May | Shakespeare Barn, Fermoy Gallery,
Red Barn & Old Warehouse

The annual Eastern Open continues to be one of the artistic highlights of the year, drawing artists and visitors from across the region. The competition always delights and surprises, with a wide range of media (including the now established inclusion of digital work) utilised by the selected artists. We are obliged to the local and national sponsors who regularly supply the array of generous awards including £3,000 Best in Show as well as a range of other awards and prizes. After
suggestions from the public, this year artist’s postcards will return to the Old Warehouse, with original works available for purchase at only £20 each and sold off the wall!
Artists from 7 counties will be selected this year by an always distinguished panel of national judges including semi-abstract landscape painter Poul Webb.
Copies of Eastern Open entry forms will be available from January, call 01553 779095 for more details or download the form from


Tom ThompsonTom Thompson
Ceramics Showcase
2 April - 21 May
Fermoy Foyer Showcase

After graduating from the College of West Anglia’s BA Fine Art, Tom Thompson became their Artist in Residence, passing on practised knowledge whilst honing his own creative practice. This showcase examines Tom’s industrious and experimental relationship with ceramics and photography.


Forthcoming Locally
Organised Events

St Germans 17th Annual Exhibition
4 - 12 Sept | 10am - 5pm daily inc. Sunday
Red Barn Gallery

Wildlife in ArtWildlife in Art
4 - 12 Sept | 10am - 5pm daily inc. Sunday
Old Warehouse

The exhibition will feature an exciting mix of wildlife subjects in all types of media. Works of professional and amateur artists will be for sale with 10% of sales going to support the RSPCA Wildlife Hospital at East Winch. The event is being supported by DSD Colour Printers of King’s Lynn.

King’s Lynn Horticultural Society Show
11 Sept 1pm - 5pm | 12 Sept 10am - 4pm
Shakespeare Barn