A Flash of Inspiration Wherever You Are

The human need for reflection and contemplation is a thread that binds us all together. We seek quiet moments where our thoughts can wander, guiding us to new ideas or perhaps to an important decision yet to be made.

Often, nature is the catalyst for our thoughts to run wild. Run your fingers through the rough sand of a windswept beach or take a moment to gaze up at the open sky through a frame of thick forest. You may find you’re able to entice fleeting thoughts into reality.

However, when life feels hectic, a flash of inspiration may need a little extra coaxing. To prompt mindful thinking we turn to galleries, installations or exhibitions which help us to unleash our creativity and streamline our thought processes.

You may associate these soul-enriching experiences with the hustle and bustle of London, but in fact there are thriving pockets of creativity throughout the UK that are aching to be explored and appreciated.

If you’re searching for the perfect setting to recharge and reframe your thoughts, these are our top three recommendations for galleries outside of the capital:

The Hepworth Wakefield

Named after sculptor Barbara Hepworth this light-filled gallery houses some of her most iconic and rare pieces. At over 1,600 square metres, The Hepworth is the largest purpose-built exhibition space outside London, bringing contemporary art to the heart of Yorkshire.

Head there to see… 35 works by one of the world’s greatest painters, Howard Hodgkin. This new exhibition explores the influence that visits to India have had on his work.

Don’t miss… Early sketches by Henry Moore.


Yorkshire Sculpture Park

Contemporary art contrasts with the beauty of the rural north in this pioneering exhibition space. Amongst 500 acres on the 18th century-designed Bretton Estate, discover work by some of the UK’s most celebrated artists.

Head there to see… The biggest UK exhibition to date by leading sculptor Tony Cragg, featuring works from nearly five decades of his practice.

Don’t miss… Those truly breathtaking views – a real joy in any weather.

Nottingham Contemporary

This inventive space may house art from all over the world, but a strong local purpose runs through its core. From showing independent films to hosting talks with the creatives behind the art, the focus is always to shine a light on contemporary society.

Head there to see… An autumn exhibition on American documentation photography. Starting in September, States of America will display iconic urban images from the civil rights movement through to the Reagan era.

Don’t miss… Italian artist Laura Favaretto’s Thinking Head Installation which sees steam billowing from the roof of the gallery.


Have we missed out your favourite spot?

Tell us your favourite out-of-London space to get inspired.

September 15, 2017 by Tajinder Banwait

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