Exhibitions at the Mercer Art Gallery

Main gallery

From Darkness to Light

With a collection of more than 2500 pictures, from Wyndham Lewis's dark interpretation of the First World War to the bold colour of Alan Davie's abstract work, darkness and light is a recurrent theme in Harrogate's fine art collection.

From gathering storms and moonlit night scenes, dark abstracts and monochrome works into the light and warmth of summery landscapes. Scenes of parties, hints of holidays, colourful abstracts and landscapes with rainbows, in a nod to the evocative symbol of the Covid pandemic in the UK.

Art has always been used to both capture and evoke feelings and emotions. This is achieved not only through the subject depicted, but also through techniques with colour, with light and shade and playing with the distortion of perspective or scale.

North gallery

Light after Dark

Since the Art Gallery first opened in Harrogate library in 1930, society has been through tumultuous changes, facing many testing times. Harrogate's curators have continued to collect art by contemporary artists throughout the ensuing decades, with work that both records our 'darkest hours' and which reflects new and exciting contemporary artistic styles showing life in Harrogate in brighter times.