Merging new with owned


The Trustees of the Rye Art Gallery (RAG) are very happy to have opened the gallery at last and are thankful that many locals and tourists embracing it again after a long Covid-19 closure. Sally Cole’s “Embodied Land” exhibits have been well received and the new exhibition in Gallery 4, “Seascapes”, has created a lot of interest, as apart from wonderful art presented by varied artists, curator Julian Day has had the vision to integrate new pieces with owned works from the permanent collection.

“Seascapes” features key historic and contemporary artworks drawn from RAG’s collection, interspersed with newt art. Julian and the trustees feel that in this interspersed way it is possible to show more of the collection as it has so many wonderful pieces that have been bequeathed by artists and of course by Mary E Storemont. 

Louis Turpin-left-Beached boats and flag
Phillip H Padwick – Little Hampton Harbour – bequeathed 1979 to permanent collection

It also  features beautiful crafted frost proof ceramics and this exhibition is open until October 30.

Mary married Howard Gull Stormont in 1898 and both were artists and eloped to Rye moving into the Ypres Studio which is now part of RAG. They became a focus for visiting artists and Mary was especially sought after for her flower paintings. Howard Stormont died in 1935. In 1957 Mary founded the Rye Art Trust and she died in 1962.

Rye was very lucky as on her death Mary bequeathed Ypres Studio and approximately 100 art works and money to the Rye Art Trust, which became RAG and opened in 1962. The permanent collection includes works by Edward Burra, Paul Nash and many other well known artists.

Rachel Arit – Decay

It is hoped that many more exhibitions in Gallery 4 will be a mix of various artists and relevant pieces from the collection as there is so much wealth and beauty in the donated art, and the trustees are keen to give it more exposure. For any further information, and how to become a friend to support RAG, please email: or phone 01797 222 433, website:

Image Credits: Heidi Foster .

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