Explore coastal landscapes, crashing ocean waves and hidden mermaids in this exhibition revealing our close relationship with the sea.

Seascapes rose in popularity as a subject for artists around 1790 and can include anything from oceans and beaches, to coastlines and nautical scenes. Over the centuries artists have been fascinated with telling the story of our relationship with the sea and, as an island nation with a rich maritime history, this is especially important to our past stories.

The exhibition takes you on a voyage through the history of sea paintings from the Dutch Golden Age spanning the 17th century, through 18th century Romantic paintings with stormy settings and atmospheric skies, up to the modern interpretations of the 20th century. Featured artists include Henry Moore, Anton Mauve and Paul Nash.

There is also an Under The Sea Cave, which families can dive into to try activities related to the exhibition’s themes.

PaintingBaroque & Rococco18th century art19th century artModern artContemporary artYorkshire


Free entry with National Art Pass

Free exhibitions with National Art Pass

Haven't got your pass yet? Learn more


Exhibitions and events at York Art Gallery


Related exhibitions

Back to top