AlanDavie, SeaGate, 1960
Sandra Blow, Painting, 1962

A Radical View: William Gear as Curator 1958–64

The abstract painter William Gear (1915–1997) was Towner’s curator from 1958 until 1964. During this time, he added to the diversity and modernity of the permanent Collection with his acquisitions. These included paintings by major British Abstract artists of the 1950s and 1960s, such as Sandra Blow, Alan Davie, Roger Hilton and Ceri Richards, and prints by both young and established printmakers.

So successful was he in increasing the reputation of Towner, that in 1962 the Observer newspaper hailed it as the ‘most go-ahead municipal gallery of its size in the country’.

This Collection Display celebrates Gear’s time at Towner and brings together some of the key purchases and acquisitions that demonstrate the important role he played in the gallery’s story.

Installation photos: Phil Burrowes for Avant Commercial 


What's On