Experience a captivating exhibition at Auckland Castle, where the remarkable talents of Rembrandt, Lucas Cranach, Tracey Emin, and Ron Mueck converge.

From the 17th of June to the 1st of October 2023, immerse yourself in the enthralling world of “Sin: The Art of Transgression.” This exhibition, organized by the National Gallery, London in collaboration with The Auckland Project, delves into the intriguing relationship between sin and art.

Discover an exquisite array of artworks that traverse the centuries, presenting unique perspectives on theological concepts and the portrayal of everyday “sinful” behaviors. Among the extraordinary masterpieces showcased are Rembrandt’s poignant “The Woman Taken in Adultery” (1644) and Lucas Cranach the Elder’s captivating “Venus and Cupid” (1529), both borrowed from the National Gallery’s prestigious collection. This exceptional display also features contributions from acclaimed contemporary artists such as Tracey Emin from the UK and renowned Australian artist Ron Mueck.

Furthermore, the exhibition proudly presents “The Penitent Magdalene” (1600s) by Maíno, a cherished piece from The Auckland Project’s own collection. Through this diverse selection of artworks, visitors are encouraged to contemplate and define their personal interpretation of “Sin.”

As part of a touring exhibition, aimed at enhancing the accessibility of the National Gallery’s collections, this display has captivated audiences at various venues throughout the UK, including The Arc in Winchester, York Art Gallery, and Perth Museum and Art Gallery in Scotland. Don’t miss the opportunity to be captivated by this remarkable exploration of sin and its connection to the world of art.

Charlotte Grobler Auckland Castle’s curator said, “The Auckland Project is quickly developing a reputation for bringing nationally and internationally renowned works of art to Bishop Auckland. Last year’s display in the Spanish Gallery featuring Dali’s Christ of St John of the Cross attracted thousands of people, and this summer we are thrilled to be working with the National Gallery on its exhibition at Auckland Castle, which is another landmark moment for the town.”  

Dr Joost Joustra, the National Gallery’s curator added: “Sin in many ways defines humankind and therefore defines the art that humans create. Sin has been the subject of countless works of art that have been made for centuries across the world. Just think of the many depictions of Adam and Eve eating forbidden fruit, perhaps the most famous biblical story of them all.  

“The term is also used more generally for something that is desired precisely because it is not allowed. Many pictures show us ‘forbidden fruit’ without any trace of the fruit mentioned in the Bible.” 

Entry to Sin: The Art of Transgression is free with The Auckland Project Annual Pass, which also gives visitors access to The Auckland Project’s other attractions in Bishop Auckland, including Auckland Castle Gardens; the Spanish Gallery; the Mining Art Gallery and the Faith Museum, opening in autumn 2023.  

The annual pass costs £25 for adults with family tickets available and is valid for 12 months from the date of purchase. To plan your visit and purchase an annual pass visit aucklandproject.org. 

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