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The Russell-Cotes Art Gallery and Museum is closed every Monday except Bank Holidays

Full listing of exhibitions at the Russell-Cotes

Aurora Triumphans (1877-8) oil painting by Evelyn de Morgan (1855-1919) returns to Bournemouth

One of the key paintings of Bournemouth’s Russell-Cotes Art Gallery & Museum returns home today, Tuesday 15 April 2008, following a two-year absence for important conservation work.

Evelyn de Morgan’s (1855-1919) Aurora Triumphans has been a big draw to the town for art lovers for many years. It was bought by Herbert Russell-Cotes, son of Sir Merton & Lady Russell-Cotes, in circa 1922.

Aurora Triumphans is one of Evelyn de Morgan’s key works. It was exhibited at the Grosvenor Gallery, London, in 1886, the year before her marriage to the potter William de Morgan. The de Morgans were leading figures in the Art & Crafts movement.

The subject of the painting is Aurora, the ancient Greek goddess of dawn, ‘breaking free’ from the ‘shackles of night’. It is a fitting subject for the Russell-Cotes Art Gallery & Museum with the ‘day & night’ theme that runs throughout the house. Further background information about the painting and the artist follows this news release.

The painting is being brought back and hung in the gallery by conservator Elizabeth Holford, on Tuesday 15 April at 2.00pm. Further information about the conservation process is available.


Interview available: conservator Elizabeth Holford at 2.00pm on Tuesday 15 April.
Please contact Kerry Curtis on 01202 451823,

Photo opportunity: of Aurora Triumphans being hung at the gallery at 2.00pm on Tuesday 15 April.
Please contact Kerry Curtis on 01202 451823,


1. The cost of conserving the painting was just under £8,000. This was paid for by funding from the Renaissance programme. The Russell-Cotes Art Gallery & Museum is one of five museums in the South West benefiting from Government funding under the Renaissance programme.

Renaissance is the Museums, Libraries and Archives (MLA) Council’s £150million programme to transform England's regional museums. For the first time ever, investment from central government is helping regional museums across the country to raise their standards and deliver real results in support of education, learning, community development and economic regeneration.

2. The Russell-Cotes Art Gallery & Museum is a registered charity (no. 306288) administered by Bournemouth Borough Council.