* On Thu 11 January 2018 we will be concentrating on the Ford Madox Brown Murals in Manchester Town Hall’s Great Hall.
Don’t miss Ed Glinert’s exposition. This is probably your last chance to find out about these paintings in detail before the building closes for five years.
The curious viewer who enters the Great Hall looks at the Murals and asks: why these scenes, why this version of history? The 12 panels contain a palette full of stories but also a catalogue of twists.
It seems perverse to find a panel illustrating the baptism of a king that never came to Manchester but not of the Peterloo Massacre. It seems strange to find a mural of an Oxford cleric tried for heresy at London’s St Paul’s but nothing about the opening of the world’s first railway station in Manchester.
And here’s another odd thing; a series of paintings decorating a room that ranks as the crowning creation of Victorian Gothic revival architecture and design contains no Victorian stories among them. How odd, how ironic, how Pre-Raphaelite.