What Lies Behind

  • Image: What Lies Behind, group workshop
  • Image: Work made by the group during a print workshop with artist Naomi Frears.
  • Image: An Arts Council National Partners Programme Exhibition
  • Image: Abigail Reynolds Universal Now: St Michael's Mount 1928 | 1949, 2020 Arts Council Collection, Southbank Centre, London © the artist. Image courtesy of the artist
  • Image: Nerys Johnson Double-page study: Iris, tulip and 'cats paw' stem with magenta ground 1995 Arts Council Collection, Southbank Centre, London © Nerys Johnson Estate

23 Oct 2021 — 08 Jan 2022

Newlyn Art Gallery

An Arts Council Collection National Partners Programme Exhibition.

What Lies Behind is a mixed exhibition featuring works from the Arts Council Collection selected by a core group of 10 participants, referred to the project through social prescribing initiatives in local GP practices. In a series of online meetings, the group chose pieces that reflected their personal responses to the pandemic and their hopes and dreams for the future, from more than 8,000 works in the Collection.

What Lies Behind includes textiles, sculpture, installation, photography, prints, paintings, and collage by Chila Burman, Derrick Greaves, Nerys Johnson, Bryan Kneale, Henry Moore, Pablo Picasso, Abigail Reynolds, Emma Talbot, and Edward Weston.

The works reflect the breadth of the collection and date from throughout the Arts Council Collection’s 75-year-history. The earliest work, by Eric Weston, dates from 1936 and the most recent is by Abigail Reynold, which was made in 2021.

Presented alongside the loans from the Collection are works made by the group, who worked with artists, many of whom are represented in the Collection, to learn new creative skills and make work for the exhibition.


Newlyn Art Gallery & The Exchange is an Arts Council Collection National Partner. The Arts Council Collection is managed by Southbank Centre, London on behalf of Arts Council England.

Find out more about the Arts Council Collection National Partners Programme.

Through a three-year partnership between the Gallery and the Arts Council Collection, we have been given privileged access to more than 8,000 works of contemporary British art, including paintings, sculpture, original works on paper, prints and moving image. The Collection supports artists in the UK through the purchase and display.

We have been working with a broad cross-section of the Newlyn and Penzance community to support them in making exhibitions drawing on this incredible resource. To date we have worked with pupils at Newlyn School; students at Mounts Bay Academy; WILD Young Parents, and now LGBTQIA+ young people in partnership with the Intercom Trust (link to Seen) and for What Lies Behind, participants in social prescribing programmes, each to make an exhibition from the collection.

For an exhibition in spring 2022 we are working with Black Voices Cornwall to select works for our final Arts Council Collection National Partners Programme exhibition.

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Venue: Newlyn Art Gallery
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Open: TUE - SAT, 10.00 - 17.00
Closed: SUN & MON

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Twitter: @newlynexchange
Instagram: @newlynexchange