Rosalind Ormiston


I am an art and architectural historian. I write features for art magazines and newspapers, with many books published, on art movements, and artists, including Hieronymus Bosch, Vincent van Gogh and Rembrandt, William Morris, Egon Schiele and Edward Hopper.


I live in London and Cumbria. I joined Kingston University as a visiting lecturer in 2002/3, teaching art, architecture and design history. 

I write for commercial and academic publications, with books on art for several publishers. I write travel features too, and when possible, visit places that hold my interest, from the Cotswolds to Casablanca; Den Bosch to Dublin, Unthank to Uzbekistan.


On the following pages you will find information on commissioned books, and interviews.



As a Cumbria Life 'Culture Awards 2017' judge, I attended the Awards at the Theatre by the Lake, Keswick, Cumbria.It was a brilliant night, attended by the CEO, and the Chairman of the Arts Council.  Cumbria Life honoured an amazing group of people, for poetry, writing, music, art, design, theatre, one-off culture events, plus special awards for outstanding achievements. Cumbria has such talented people.


October highlights in Cumbria

So many fabulous exhibitions to choose from, here are three...


Curated by Chris Wadsworth (see carousel photo), this exhibition is a rare chance to see drawings, watercolours and oil paintings by the highly collectable, reclusive Cumbrian artist Percy Kelly who died in 1993.


Tullie House Art Gallery and Museum, Carlisle,  until 26 January 2018



ALAN STONES 'Clearing'


The exhibition brings together for the first time four major series of paintings made over the last decade.


At Unthank Gallery, Penrith, until 12 November, 2017



Opening 20 October, 2017 - until 17 February 2018


'Land/Sea/Life: A British Art Collection, brings together a sublime group of artists, including David Bomberg, Frank Auerbach, Laura Knight, John Piper, Lynn Chadwick, Mary Fedden, Henry Moore, Graham Sutherland... 

Dove Cottage, Wordsworth's House, Grasmere, Cumbria 

A small but exquisite exhibition of Lake District watercolours, 'A Celebration of Watercolours' (until 23 December 2017), featuring William Gilpin and Mathias Reade amongst others. Look out for Wordsworth's immensely tall sun hat made of straw, and his rather neat sunglasses.


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At Turner Contemporary, Margate,  Just opened, an interesting comparison created between English artists J.M.W. Turner, and Tracey Emin.

On display, Margate-born Emin's 'My Bed', 1998, spotlit in a large gallery space. On the walls are three sea paintings, in oils, plus a selection of watercolours, all dating 1830-40s by Turner, who favoured Margate as a location for painting. Favourite for me was seeing the two suitcases Emin uses to carry the 'My Bed' accessories in. On until 14 January, 2018

(see carousel)




'The Poetry of Forms' at

TURNER CONTEMPORARY, MARGATE. An excellent exhibition on Jean Arp, poet and sculptor. Worth seeing. 

On until 14 January 2018

(see carousel)




C-ART CUMBRIAN ARTIST OF THE YEAR exhibition at Rheged, Penrith, Cumbria (until 5 November, 2017) features work by one of Cumbria's most original artists' Jan Marshall.(see her studio photo on carousel above).  Here is a link to YouTube film, to find out more about her




I am writing about this stunning exhibiton for Artists & Illustrators mag. SeeOctober highlights right >