Past and present collide in new art show inspired by Norwich Castle’s historic print collection

We Came Here To Conquer exhibition at Norwich Castle Museum. Esther Morgan, Norfolk Museum Services

We Came Here To Conquer exhibition at Norwich Castle Museum. Esther Morgan, Norfolk Museum Services relationships officer looking at On The Corner of Carrow and Koblenz by Reece Jones. Picture: ANTONY KELLY - Credit: Archant

Norwich Castle's epic archive of more than 11,000 prints is the inspiration behind the latest art show to open at the historic venue.

We Came Here To Conquer exhibition at Norwich Castle Museum. The Devil's Tower by Miles Edmund Cotma

We Came Here To Conquer exhibition at Norwich Castle Museum. The Devil's Tower by Miles Edmund Cotman. Picture: ANTONY KELLY - Credit: Archant

Called We Came Here To Conquer, the show has seen 11 contemporary artists delve into the castle's print collection to spark ideas for vibrant, new works of art.

The historic archive itself is a rich and varied cultural treasure trove with a huge mix of works by artists ranging from Norwich School's John Sell Cotman to abstract artist Josef Albers and Turner prize winner Elizabeth Price - and the whole idea behind the We Came Here To Conquer project was to open up this fascinating collection to new audiences.

The result is an intriguing and diverse showcase of new art which takes as its starting point works by everyone from Cotman to Colin Self alongside material relating to excavations and historic sites around Norfolk.

Harriet Loffler, curator of contemporary art at Norwich Castle, said: 'We Came Here to Conquer is a thrilling exhibition. Some of the prints from the museum's collection haven't been on display for a number of years so it's a rare opportunity to see the gems of our print collection whilst also seeing some cutting edge contemporary art by artists working with print – but in a very expanded way.'

We Came Here To Conquer exhibition at Norwich Castle Museum. Esther Morgan, Norfolk Museum Services

We Came Here To Conquer exhibition at Norwich Castle Museum. Esther Morgan, Norfolk Museum Services relationships officer looking at Keyword Searcher by Flora Parrott. Picture: ANTONY KELLY - Credit: Archant


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The contemporary artists exhibiting work in the show include Charlie Barkus, Matthew Benington, Adam Bridgland, Alec Game, Aaron Scott Griffin, Reece Jones, Jade Jamean Lees, Flora Parrott, Sophie Purchase, Carl Rowe, and Gabrielle Walker. All their work is displayed alongside the original art which inspired it.

The show will also have extra resonance when the castle's next major exhibition - Rembrandt: Lightening the Darkness - opens on October 21. The Rembrandt exhibition will celebrate the artist's innovative use of the medium of print, drawing on Norwich Castle's extraordinary but little known collection of Rembrandt etchings.

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We Came Here To Conquer - which has been funded by a £15,000 grant from the Arts Council England's Grants for the Arts programme - is at Norwich Castle's Timothy Gurney Gallery until March 25 2018. For more information, visit www.museums.norfolk.gov.uk

We Came Here To Conquer exhibition at Norwich Castle Museum. Md,ddmddsdpo by Ryan Gander. Picture: A

We Came Here To Conquer exhibition at Norwich Castle Museum. Md,ddmddsdpo by Ryan Gander. Picture: ANTONY KELLY - Credit: Archant

We Came Here To Conquer exhibition at Norwich Castle Museum. Oops by Sophie Purchase.
Picture: ANTON

We Came Here To Conquer exhibition at Norwich Castle Museum. Oops by Sophie Purchase. Picture: ANTONY KELLY - Credit: Archant

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