Fire: Flashes to Ashes in British Art 1692-2019

15 Jun–1 Sept 19

Fire: Flashes to Ashes in British Art 1692-2019

A major exhibition tracing the representation of fire in British art across the last four centuries; exploring the symbolism and meaning the element has had for artists throughout history.

Fire: Flashes to Ashes in British Art 1692-2019, is the third in a series of element-themed exhibitions at the RWA, bringing together a number of important historic, modern and contemporary artworks. In turns destructive and creative, fearsome and fascinating, fire is a subject loaded with symbolism, ritual and emotion.

Unsurprisingly, the subject of fire has drawn in artists throughout the ages. This exhibition will examine how artists’ approaches have changed over time, recording historical, religious, domestic or natural events as well as exploring fire as a material phenomenon informed by contemporary themes and issues.

Fire will include significant artists such as J.M.W. Turner, Joseph Wright of Derby, William Blake, John Martin, Stanley Spencer, Wilhelmina Barnes-Graham, Eric Ravilious, Jeremy Deller, Tim Shaw, Susan Hiller, David Nash, Douglas Gordon and Cornelia Parker.

This exhibition shows how vital fire has been to the human experience, through technology, storytelling and symbolism and how the duality of our relationship with the element continues to fascinate in the 21st century.


Times & Prices

Tuesday-Saturday 10am-5.30pm
Sunday 11am-5pm
CLOSED Mondays

Last admission 30 minutes before closing. The RWA occasionally closes early for special events. Please call ahead or check the website for details. 

Adults: £7.95 (includes a 80p donation)
Concessions: £6.75 (includes a 70p donation)
Under 18s/SGS, UoB & UWE students: FREE
National Art Pass holders: 50% discount on ticket price

Image by Tate Images/Digital Image © Tate, London 2014. Joseph Wright of Derby (1734-1797), Vesuvius in Eruption, with a View of the Islands in the Bay of Naples - c.1776-80, oil on canvas, 122 x 176.4cm
×