Spencer's Earthly Paradise

The Stanley Spencer Gallery in Cookham is celebrating its 50th anniversary with a show of the greatest works from its collection and some important loans.

Stanley Spencer, St Francis and the Birds, 1935 © Estate of Stanley Spencer. All Rights Reserved, DACS 2002

Stanley Spencer, St Francis and the Birds, 1935

With more than 50 pictures, the exhibition contains many of the artists most celebrated religious, landscape and subject works, and a series of self portraits spanning his career.The title of the exhibition comes from Spencer's own words, used to describe his beloved home town: 'When I left the Slade and went back to Cookham I entered a kind of earthly paradise.'

Don't miss

The artist's first and last self portraits, painted at a distance of 45 years, will both be on show, on loan from Tate. The latter was painted in 1959, when the artist knew that he was dying. St Francis and the Birds (1935) and The Scarecrow (1934) will hang side by side, in reference to the Royal Academy's famous decision to accept the latter and not the former, which led to Spencer's resignation and a storm of media coverage.

Venue details

Stanley Spencer Gallery High Street, Cookham Berkshire SL6 9SJ 01628 471885 www.stanleyspencer.org.uk

Entry details

 Free with National Art Pass (standard entry charge is £5)

 1 Apr – 31 Oct
Daily, 10.30am – 5.30pm

3 Nov – 15 Jan
Thur – Sun, 11am – 4.30pm