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Visitor Centre Exhibitions

Durham University Botanic Garden has a rich connection with artists and their work, with many sculptures hidden around the garden. To this end we utilise the Coffee-Shop in our Visitor Centre to exhibit art, paintings and photographs by local artists.

We frequently host exhibitions of different artists’ work throughout the year. So after a walk around the garden why not ponder the paintings with a hot drink or over an afternoon snack? Many of the artists offer their work for sale, if a piece should catch your eye.

If you are interested in exhibiting work of your own, please contact the Retail Office by calling 0191 334 9357.

Alternatively, you can also book your exhibition through our booking form below by selecting "Botanic Garden" in the relevant field:

Book your exhibition

Current Exhibitions:

Here you can find details of current exhibitions being displayed in the Garden’s Visitor Centre.

February & March 2018 - John Renshaw

John Renshaw has been exhibiting his paintings at the Botanic Garden since 2004. He paints in watercolour, occasionally adding ink or pastel. For many years a geography teacher, he combines his love of landscape and travel with his art. He now works in the art department at Durham School. Proceeds from this exhibition will be given to St Cuthbert’s Hospice in Durham, where John helps as a volunteer.

May 2018 - Durham Photographic Society

The exhibition to be presented during the month of May is by the members of Durham Photographic Society. This Society was founded in 1892, originally as Durham City Camera Club, and has run continuously in its present form since 1947. The club is affiliated to The Northern Counties Photographic Federation and is a registered charity. The members are all enthusiasts with many and varied photographic interests and of all age groups and levels of experience.

Eleven years ago the Society, in conjunction with The Botanic Garden, ran workshops and demonstrations in order to create public interest and each year since then it has been allowed to put up an exhibition of its members' work.

The Club has over one-hundred members. Because of the numbers involved, and in order to show a good cross-section of work being done, it has been necessary to limit the entries to one per member, totalling forty seven pictures. There is no particular theme involved and selection has been down to the individual to make their own choice.

It is hoped that the display will attract visitors to The Botanic Garden and perhaps that those interested in photography will be tempted to join the Society which meets on nearly every Thursday night throughout the year at 7.30pm at St Oswald’s Church Institute, Church Street, Durham DH1 3DQ.

Further information can be obtained at

June 2018 - Geri Poole

Geri is a Weardale artist creating textural sculptures and multi-media paintings, and table lamps in recycled materials and glass.

July 2018 - Deerness Art Group

Deerness Art Group is an association of amateur artists resident in the North East region. We draw our members from the Tyne to North Yorkshire. Our interests are painting-related activities centred on developing our skills, knowledge and enjoyment from our hobby or semi-professional activities. Our current base for regular monthly meetings is the Newton Hall Community Centre, Pity Me, Durham.

Our annual exhibition at the Botanic Gardens has become a favoured venue for our members as we always receive a warm welcome and the surrounding gardens are a spectacular setting. Members are adopting various mediums this year including oils, acrylics, mixed media and watercolour. We also have a member who specialises in silk printing. Many works, which are generally of local landscapes are for sale.

September 2018 - Ewan Anderson

Ewan was educated at Dulwich College and St Edmund Hall, Oxford, between which he did his National Service in the Royal Navy. He taught at two schools and a Teacher Training College before being appointed to the Geography Department at Durham University in 1979. During his academic career he worked in 80 countries and produced 18 books and 250 papers. After retiring as the Professor of Geopolitics in 2001, he was Visiting Professor at the Universities of York, Exeter and York St John but was able to focus chiefly upon his lifelong interest in trees.

Ewan draws trees in the field, using principally pencils and pastels, and tries to blend the botanical with the artistic. He was commissioned to draw the Heritage Trees of the Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew, in preparation for the Year of the Tree in 2013. He is tree artist for a range of organisations including: the Durham Wildlife Trust, the Sidmouth Arboretum, Gainsborough's House and the York Museum Trust, to all of which charities he donates his drawings as cards. He has held over 20 exhibitions at a variety of places including the Royal Horticultural Society Gardens, Wisley, the National Memorial Arboretum and Durham Cathedral. In 2015, two of his drawings won first prizes in competitions in the United States. As in the past two years, he will be an Artist in Residence at the Nature in Art Gallery and Museum in 2017.

Trees may be considered distinguished for many reasons including beauty, size, longevity, strength, special features, associations, location and history. In this exhibition, drawings of trees from gardens run by a variety of charitable organisations, ranging from the Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew, to the Nature in Art Gallery will be used to illustrate these various characteristics.

November 2018 - Alison Gall

'Artwave North' is an enthusiastic group of artists based in North East England who are always experimenting with new media and continually producing new works. They have exhibited throughout the region for the past few years, and three times before at the Botanic Garden. Throughout November their works will be for sale, together with a variety of cards.