The Cry of the Curlew exhibition

A celebration of the curlew through original artwork, photography, poetry, sculpture and conservation – free admission!

Cry of the Curlew celebrates the return of these iconic birds to upland habitats for the breeding season – as they have done since time immemorial. The arrival of these graceful birds quickens emotions in our hearts and minds. Their soul-stirring plaintive cries fill the air while they are with us, and we feel their absence when silently they depart. The exhibition explores the meanings we ascribe to having such beauty in our lives and in these times. It also explores what we shall lose of ourselves if or when these ground-nesting birds disappear forever from the sight and soundscape of our lives.

The beauty and fragility of Curlews is highlighted through the stunning photography of Paco Valera and insightful prose-poetry by Barbara Murray. Inspiring artwork is on display by Sally Zaranko, Hester Cox, Judith Bromley, and Robert Nicholls, alongside the wire sculptures of Stephanie Smith. Swedish artists Emily Berry Mennerdahl and Jonas Böttern of Hillside Projects present work symbolising ecological collapse. A video and soundscape by June Gersten-Roberts features interviews with farmers on sustainability, along with Alastair McIntosh’s poem, Extinction set to the music of Loriana Pauli. A new work by Dr William Titley of In-Situ beautifully maps in watercolour ‘The Curlew Way,’ as part of his Walking with Landscape project. A wonderful display by Curlew Recovery South Lakes will demonstrate the vital work they are doing to protect nests and support the delicate population of these beautiful birds, as well as sharing ways you can get involved.

Art competition

Have any budding artists in your midst? Our Cry of the Curlew Kids Art Competition is open until the 5th of July. Entrants will have their work displayed as part of the exhibition, and to be in with a chance of winning a prize!

This competition is open to all children who wish to participate, and there are 1st, 2nd, and 3rd place prizes up for grabs. Once you’ve finished your artwork, send it or bring it to Kendal Museum (Kendal Museum, Station Road, Kendal, LA9 6BT) with a full name and contact email on the back. The winners will be announced on 13th July on our social media and newsletter. Happy crafting! 🖍🖌✂️

Key dates

Exhibition duration – Thursday 20th June – Saturday 17th August (every Thursday, Friday and Saturday 9am – 5pm)

Children’s art competition deadline – Friday 5th July, winners announced 13th July

Curlew activity day and talk from CRSL – Saturday 6th July

Talk by Dr William Titley about his project Walking with Landscape: The Curlew Way – 27th July

Artist-in-residence – Sally Zaranko of Ashford Cottage Design will be resident in the gallery on the 6th July, 19th July and 8th of August sketching and chatting about her work to visitors.

Please note that the gallery is via stair access only.

Thank-you to all participating artists, especially to Cry of the Curlew exhibition coordinators Barbara Murray and Paco Valera.

Curlew Recovery South Lakes

Curlew Action


Barbara Murray and Paco Valera

Sally Zaranko

Hester Cox

Judith Bromley and Robert Nicholls

Stephanie Smith

Emily Berry Mennerdahl and Jonas Böttern

June Gersten-Roberts

Dr William Titley

Alastair McIntosh Alastair McIntosh’s Home Page

Loriana Pauli

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