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Wednesday 5 September 2012

Towner Gallery, Eastbourne

Eastbourne has a rather genteel history and so it seems entirely appropriate that its main gallery was started with a bequest from an Alderman. Alderman Towner left the town 22 paintings in 1920 which were housed in a Georgian mansion and so The Towner Art Gallery was born. Big as mansions are though, the collection outgrew it and so it is that Eastbourne finds itself with a rather snazzy looking new gallery. It's now the largest gallery in the South East outside of London and has the biggest collection of work by famous Sussex artist Eric Ravilious.

There's a lot of focus on work by Sussex artists while exhibitions from worldwide artists are curated based on local inspirations such as the current exhibition The Edge In Landscape and The Point Of Departure. What we like most about the Towner's revamp though is their support and development work with local artists. They hold an open 'audition' every year for artists based in East Sussex, encourage proposals for temporary exhibitions and work in partnership with an artist network called Bluemonkeynet to help support local artists.

The Towner is open Tuesday to Sunday and is well worth a visit before you skip off for an ice cream and penny falls on the pier.

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