Watts Studios will open to the public for the first time in January

Date Posted: 17/11/2015

January 2016 will see the studios of Victorian artist, George Frederic Watts and his wife, designer Mary Watts, open to the public for the first time.

Following a major restoration, the studios will be opened at the existing site of Watts Gallery – Artists’ Village in the Surrey Hills, and will give visitors an insight into the way the artist worked.

Many of G F Watt’s most famous paintings were created in this workspace and the original collection of art will be on view.

Watt’s last major work, The Court of Death will be a major highlight of this collection.

Mary Watts’ studio has also been restored and remodelled, with key objects presented from her own collection.

These include a highly decorative frieze which was rescued from the Cambridge Military Hospital Chapel in Aldershot before being conserved.

The Watts Studios will also include the new David Pike Conservation Studio, which will feature a viewing window for visitors to watch as conservators work on the gallery’s collections on site.

Woodland surrounding the Watts Studios has been restored and replanted, too. Hundreds of terracotta birds will be installed throughout the woodland and have been created by participants in the Watts Gallery Workshops over the summer.

Perdita Hunt, director of Watts Gallery Trust, said, “The opening of the Watts Studios is the next phase in completing the Artists’ Village in Compton. Watts Gallery, the Watts Chapel, the Pottery Buildings and now the Watts Studios offer a unique window upon the Arts and Crafts Movement and enable the Watts Gallery Trust to take a further step towards creating an internationally important centre where visitors and students can explore Victorian art, social history, craft and design”

The studios will open on 26th January 2016 and group rates are available, with discounted tickets and additional talks and tours.

For more information visit www.wattsgallery.org.uk.

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