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Dee Valley Art Exhibition coming to Llangollen

An exciting new exhibition is opening at the Dory Gallery in Llangollen this September, which invites you to take a fresh look at the Dee Valley and the works of art it inspires.

The Dee Valley landscape has been a source of inspiration to artists, poets and tourists for centuries, drawn to the area in search of the sublime. It became a hub for artistic activity in the 18th century; captured on canvas by renowned painters such as Richard Wilson, Paul Sandby and JMW Turner, and beautifully described in words and poetry by writers including George Borrow, Thomas Pennant and William Wordsworth.

Following this tradition, the Our Picturesque Landscape  * project is pleased to present an exhibition of over 60 contemporary works of art inspired by the picturesque scenery of the Dee Valley.

Through thoughtfully commissioned paintings, poems, installations, photography, drawings, textiles and even a myriorama, the exhibition will explore our connections with the landscape, and highlight the unique balance between the stunning natural beauty and important industrial heritage of the area.

The exhibition will be open at the Dory Gallery from Saturday 16th September until Sunday 8th October 2023, accompanied by a full programme of events, art workshops and family friendly activities. Up to date details  can be found here.

The exhibition is part of the Our Picturesque Landscape project, funded by the National Lottery Heritage Fund.

Hannah Marubbi, Partnership Officer for Our Picturesque Landscape project, said; “There is strong artistic heritage in the Dee Valley, and the picturesque qualities of the landscape continue to inspire creatives today. We are really looking forward to celebrating the fantastic and diverse works of art that have been created throughout the Our Picturesque Landscape project, and sharing them with the community through a programme of free, interactive events.  We are grateful to the National Lottery Heritage Fund for the £1,382,400 funding which has made our project and this exhibition possible.”

Horseshoe Falls near Llangollen
Horseshoe Falls near Llangollen


*Our Picturesque Landscape Project centres on the landscape of the Dee Valley and the Pontcysyllte Aqueduct and Canal World Heritage Site. It takes the theme of inspirational journeys that have been, and continue to be, a feature of the area which is cut by the canal, Telford’s A5 and the River Dee. Visitors have drawn inspiration from this beautiful valley in art and poetry since the 18th century and it continues to draw tourists in search of the sublime.

Dinas Brân Castle, Llangollen
Dinas Bran Castle at sunset.

This landscape is under growing pressure with high numbers of visitors drawn to what are often our most fragile sites. The communities on its doorstep, born from the industrial endeavours that shaped it, are now less connected to the benefits the landscape offers. The five year project will invest in the resilience of key visitor sites and engage communities in its appreciation and management while reinterpreting this rich landscape for a new generation.

Projects have been developed under 3 themes – Conserving the Picturesque Landscape, Accessing the Picturesque Landscape and People and the Picturesque.

Our Picturesque Landscape Project is funded by The National Lottery Heritage Fund. It is a partnership project developed by the Clwydian Range and Dee Valley Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty, Pontcysyllte Aqueduct and Canal World Heritage Site, Denbighshire County Council, Wrexham County Borough Council, Shropshire Council, The Canal & River Trust, Natural Resources Wales, Cadw, Cadwyn Clwyd, Aqueducks (Friends of the World Heritage Site) and the Friends of the Clwydian Range and Dee Valley.