The National Gallery has teamed up with Ocean Outdoor to bring some of the most famous and uplifting works of art out from behind the Gallery’s temporarily closed doors to thousands of people the length and breadth of the UK.
At a time when museums and galleries are closed to help contain the spread of coronavirus, opportunities to stand and enjoy the benefits that come with immersing yourself in a painting are limited. Ocean Outdoor and the National Gallery are thus working together to bring great art to the streets in a variety of locations in Birmingham, Edinburgh, Glasgow, Leeds, London, Manchester, Newcastle, Nottingham and Southampton.
Ocean has offered its digital sites to the National Gallery free for the next two weeks in order to display images of seven of the Gallery’s most iconic paintings: Van Gogh’s Sunflowers (1888) and A Wheatfield, with Cypresses (1889), Monet’s The Water-Lily Pond (1899), van Eyck’s The Arnolfini Portrait (1434), Seurat’s Bathers at Asnières (1884), Vigée Le Brun’s Self Portrait in a Straw Hat (1782) and Rousseau’s Surprised! (1891).
The paintings will hopefully provide a cheering sight to frontline workers, all of those who are returning to work this week and people taking their daily exercise as they pass by. The emotional and mental health benefits of art have long been recognised and, through Ocean’s network of screens, the National Gallery hopes that sharing some of the nation’s greatest paintings will have a positive effect on the nation’s wellbeing.
Dr Gabriele Finaldi, Director of the National Gallery, commented: “Our role now, more than ever, is to provide access to some of the world’s greatest art to give people inspiration and solace in these difficult times. Therefore, we are hugely grateful for this generous gesture from Ocean Outdoor that is enabling us to bring the Nation’s Gallery to the nation’s streets and reach even more people.’
Chris Standish, Ocean Outdoor Head of Brand Partnerships, added: “This partnership with the National Gallery really brings Ocean’s Art of Outdoor proposition to life. After such a difficult period, I can’t think of a better way to lift the national mood as people begin to swap lockdown for the joy of outdoor spaces.”
While the National Gallery’s doors are closed, anyone who enjoys seeing art on the streets of the UK and wants to see more can join www.nationalgallery.org.uk online for more free art, films, stories and activities.
For further information on Ocean Outdoor, visit: www.oceanoutdoor.com