Thomas Gainsborough and John Constable landscape works celebrated in brand new trail of Suffolk and Essex

View of Ipswich landscape by the great English artist Thomas Gainsborough

View of Ipswich landscape by the great English artist Thomas Gainsborough

An innovative trail in Suffolk and Essex focusing on the art of John Constable and Thomas Gainsborough is set to launch this spring.

Dedham Vale, part of Constable Country

Dedham Vale, part of Constable Country - Credit: Archant

Gainsborough’s House, the museum in Sudbury, is launching the trail to coincide with their exhibition Constable at Gainsborough’s House.

The new initiative follows on from their Gainsborough’s Sudbury trail, and explores the important landscapes painted by Gainsborough and Constable in Suffolk and Essex.

As two of the country’s most influential artists, the trail is hoped to boost tourism by taking a fresh look at the works of Gainsborough and Constable.

Louisa Brouwer, keeper of art and place at Gainsborough’s House, said: “Although the narrative of ‘Constable Country’ is already well established, this trail examines how East Anglia inspired and connected both painters, asking: ‘What makes this landscape so inspirational to artists?’.

An early oil painting by John Constable. Painted in 1797, The Harvest Field.

An early oil painting by John Constable. Painted in 1797, The Harvest Field.


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“The trail will highlight ten locations of historic significance, including Gainsborough’s House, Christchurch Mansion, Flatford and Landguard Fort, in addition to featuring a range of parish churches, parks and rural villages throughout East Anglia.”

At Gainsborough’s House, paintings such as Wooded Landscape with Herdsman Seated from 1746–1747 will be featured.

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Ms Brouwer added: “Probably painted whilst Gainsborough was based between London and Suffolk, this expansive landscape scene is evocative of the Suffolk countryside surrounding Sudbury.”

At Christchurch Mansion, works painted by John Constable in Suffolk, including Golding Constable’s Kitchen Garden from circa 1815, will be highlighted.

Suffolk Landscape, painted in about 1820, which was bought by Peter Pears in December, 1947, from Ar

Suffolk Landscape, painted in about 1820, which was bought by Peter Pears in December, 1947, from Arthur Tooth & Sons, London, for £250. It's now attributed to the 'circle of John Constable, possibly by Thomas Churchyard'. A brown tree bothered Pears. It looked 'too heavy and upset the balance'. so he pursued it... Image courtesy the Britten-Pears Foundation - Credit: Archant

Gainsborough’s House has partnered with Colchester and Ipswich Museums on the creation of the trail, which will be made available in the form of a leaflet and map, alongside a series of illustrated exhibition panels placed at various sites.

“The opportunity to collaborate on this exciting initiative aims to develop a stronger sense of place in the region, exploring the lasting influence that Thomas Gainsborough and John Constable still have in their native East Anglia today,” added Ms Brouwer.

• The trail launches on Friday, March 24, and leaflets will be available from the partner locations and museums.

Wooded Landscape with Herdsman Seated. Picture: THOMAS GAINSBOROUGH

Wooded Landscape with Herdsman Seated. Picture: THOMAS GAINSBOROUGH - Credit: Archant

Golding Constable�s Kitchen Garden. Picture: JOHN CONSTABLE

Golding Constable�s Kitchen Garden. Picture: JOHN CONSTABLE - Credit: Archant

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