Court Barn supports students from Chipping Campden School each year by offering a bursary to help them on their career path in the arts. The bursary is integral to the museum’s aim to promote craft and design and provides an opportunity for emerging artists to realise their full potential. Gemma Clark was awarded the Court Barn Bursary in 2019.
Past Exhibitions & Events
31 August – 17 November 2019. John Makepeace OBE is a distinguished furniture designer and maker. Through a collection of chairs, artist’s prototypes and designs, this exhibition looked at John Makepeace’s inspiration and the very distinctive rationale behind each piece.
27 April – 21 July 2019. The sculpture, carver and puppet master William Simmonds was the central figure in the renewal of the Arts and Crafts movement in Gloucestershire after the First World War. His larger work was compared with that of Eric Gill and Henri Gaudier-Brzeska.
9 February – 24 March 2019. This exhibition explored Ashbee’s favourite poetry and music, including 14 titles of his selection of great poems and The Essex House Song Book (1903-5) which was edited by his wife Janet.
27 July – 28 October 2018. In celebration of the 1918 Act which first gave some women the right to vote, the exhibition showcases the work of May Morris, Louise Powell and Nelly Erichsen.
13 April – 8 July 2018. The work of nine contemporary designers who echo the rich heritage established by C.R. Ashbee and his Guild, placing great value on work, the joy of craftsmanship and the natural beauty of materials.
20 January – 11 March 2018. Sidney Reeve joined the Guild of Handicraft in 1902 to work as a silversmith. He left in 1904 to teach at Leicester School of Art, and worked there for the next thirty years. Court Barn holds a large collection of his drawings.
7 April – 9 July 2017. This major exhibition of 2017 curated by experts Alan Crawford and Mary Greensted is the first to showcase C R Ashbee’s Campden period. It will include the full range of Ashbee’s work during that time, as a designer of furniture, metalwork, silver, jewellery and printed books. Many pieces held by private lenders have never been on public display.
28 January – 26 March 2017. To celebrate Court Barn’s 10th anniversary we will be displaying objects the Museum has acquired since 2007. The exhibition will focus on those objects currently in our archive including pieces of Campden pottery, books illustrated by Paul Woodroffe and a plaque by Alec Miller. We are inviting nine people from our volunteers, Friends of the Museum, Trustees and staff to choose their favourite piece.
8 October – 20 November 2016. The Essex House Press books were not just words on the page, they were also beautiful objects. The exhibition explored the handsome bindings, striking emblems and evocative illustrations with which they were enriched.
16 July – 2 October 2016. A leading artist in his day Sir Frank Brangwyn believed that art was part of everyday life. He achieved world-wide acclaim for his paintings and murals and designed furniture, ceramics, glass stained glass and metal work.
16 April – 5 June 2016. A private collection of Winchcombe pottery formed over a number of years, this exhibition included special one-off pieces as well as those made for every day.
12 December – 13 March 2015-16. John Limbrey was a renowned silversmith, model maker and artist. A contemporary of Robert Welch at the School of Silversmithing at Birmingham College of Art he joined Robert Welch at his workshop in Chipping Campden in 1958. The Tower Goblet and Silver box (1972) seen on display are examples of his work.
27 June – 27 September 2015. This stunning exhibition of patterned and story tiles from private collections illustrated the decorative work by William Morris, Edward Burne-Jones and others.
3 April – 17 May 2015. A celebration of the work of Talwin Morris, art director of the Glasgow publishers, Blackie and Son, from 1893. He became a friend of Charles Rennie Mackintosh and his contemporaries and the distinctive elements of the Glasgow Style are reflected in his work.
17 January – 29 March 2015. The exhibition showed fire tools and other domestic pieces made in Campden by Thornton and Downer and in the Sapperton smithy of Ernest Gimson as well as more decorative work such as candlesticks and sconces. Pieces by the Birmingham Guild of Handicraft and the Russell Workshops were also included.
18 October – 30 November 2014. A display on the fortunes of the Guildsmen during the First World War.
19 July – 28 September 2014. This exhibition looked at the inspiration and influences on Robert Welch, his relationship with his customers, the commissions he has worked on and the period in which they were created.
21 March – 8 June 2014. This exhibition included books that reflect Ashbee’s links with the Arts & Crafts movement such as Beauty’s Awakening and An Endeavour towards the teaching of John Ruskin and William Morris. Books by friends including Ananda Coomaraswamy, Lord Redesdale and Hugh Seebohm and Guildsmen such as Archibald Ramage.
21 December – 2 March 2013-14. This exhibition celebrated the on-going craft traditions of The Guild of Handicraft and in particular the Hart Silversmiths Trust Project to conserve, catalogue and digitise the important collection of over 3000 drawings produced by Hart’s workshop over the last century.
10 October – 24 November 2013. This husband and wife team are best known for their stunning artistic jewellery based on leaf and flower forms. Also shown were examples of their work as illustrators. The Gaskins worked mainly in Birmingham and moved to Campden in 1924.
4 July – 22 September 2013. Winchcombe Pottery, set up by Michael Cardew, has been producing useful domestic wares for over eighty years. It has always been a team effort overseen by Cardew and then Ray Finch and now Mike Finch. Many potters from Britain and elsewhere have gained valuable practical experience working there.
28 March – 2 June 2013. Reginald Sharpley (1879-1947) was a civil engineer, Guards officer in the War and artist who came to Campden in the 1920s. Here, he painted, drew and made prints, hunted and involved himself in the artistic life of the town.
31 October – 25 November 2012. A display on the men who were part of the Guild of Handicraft and their families who came from East London to Chipping Campden.
2 August – 7 October 2012. An exhibition of rare, privately owned watercolours and drawings by F.L. Griggs R.A
26 April – 1 July 2012. The Essex House Press was a private printing press set up by the Guild of Handicraft. Its aim was to produce books using handmade paper, traditional printing and binding methods and often specially-designed typefaces. Court Barn has the most important collection of Essex House Press material.
10 January – 11 March 2012. An exhibition showing the sidecar as used in the film Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows Part 1. The Watsonian squire sidecar manufactured in Blockley has become a worldwide best seller and a design classic.
3 – 25 September 2011. Norman Jewson was an architect and craftsman of the Cotswold group of Arts & Crafts movement. He settled in Sapperton in 1907 to work for Ernest Gimson and continued to practice as an architect and designer in the Cotswolds until 1974.
9 July – 29 August 2011. An exhibition of paintings by Marianne and Adrian Stokes curated by Magdalen Evans with photographs of the work of the Milhai Eminescu Trust.
21 April – 3 July 2011. A selection from Cheltenham Art Gallery & Museum’s nationally significant collection curated by Mary Greensted. This exhibition looked at different approaches to the use of plants, flowers and animals in the work of C.R. Ashbee, William de Morgan, Fred Partridge, Edith Payne, William Simmonds and Ernest Gimson.
15 January – 17 March 2011. A display on the life of Harry Warmington, a local silversmith and metal worker, who along with George Hart revived C.R. Ashbee’s Campden School of Arts and Crafts in the 1940’s.
8 May – 27 June 2010. The story of 20th century textile crafts from Ethel Mairet at Broad Campden in the 1900s, through Mary Osborn at Stanton in the 1970s and 1980s, to craftspeople of the present day.
25 April – 21 June 2009. Felicity Ashbee, the second daughter of C.R. and Janet Ashbee, was born in the Norman Chapel, Broad Campden in 1913. Her death in 2008 broke one of the last direct links with the Arts and Crafts movement.
19 July – 21 September 2008. Textiles, posters, prints, paintings and calligraphy by the talented designer and painter Margaret Calkin James (1894-1985), who worked in Chipping Campden during the Second World War.