Special Exhibition

Scene through Wood – A Century of Modern Wood Engraving

9 February to 2 May 2022

Scene Through Wood celebrates one of the most astonishingly skilful and richly creative forms of visual art. Curated by Anne Desmet RA, the exhibition marks 100 years since the founding of the Society of Wood Engravers in 1920. It includes works from the Ashmolean’s outstanding collection of many thousands of prints, plus loans from private collections by leading artist-engravers from the 1790s right up to the present.

The wood engravings range over Romanticism, modernism and abstraction, to extraordinary photo-realistic works that defy belief. It demonstrates the endless versatility of the medium which has been used to depict the whole ‘theatre of life’, from work and play, war and hardship, designs for industry and typography, to natural landscapes and dazzling scenes of inner cities. Included are well-known names such as William Blake, Samuel Palmer, M. C. Escher and Peter Blake; and many women artists including Gertrude Hermes RA, Gwen Raverat and Edwina Ellis whose outstanding works deserve to be better known.

A specially curated selection of wood engravings by Reynolds Stone from the collections at Dorset Museum will also be on display. An illustrator, painter, designer and typographer his work spans the Natural World and Commercial Design sections of the exhibition. Pastoral scenery based on close observation was the subject of much of Stone’s work. He is also well known for his lettering inspired by the Renaissance and formal elegance of Eric Gill.

Brooklyn Bridge Afternoon by Anne Desmet

Brooklyn Bridge series: Afternoon © Anne Desmet, 2015


  • Opening hours:

    Dorset Museum & Art Gallery
    Daily: 10.00am - 5.00pm

    TASTE Café
    Daily: 9.00am - 4.00pm
    Sunday: 10:00am - 4:00pm

  • Admissions:

    10% discount for Adult and Young Person Unlimited Ticket booked online using discount code DM01

  • Dorset Museum

    High West Street
    Dorchester DT1 1XA

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Exhibition Organised by the Ashmolean Museum, University of Oxford


The Ashmolean is the University of Oxford’s museum of art and archaeology

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Header image: Brooklyn Bridge series: Afternoon © Anne Desmet, 2015

We’re Good To Go


We have gained the Visit England ‘We’re Good To Go’ kitemark confirming we’re following national COVID 19 guidelines for managing visits to our site.

✔ Face masks must still be worn to keep you, our staff and our volunteers safe unless you are exempt!

✔ Sanitisation stations will still be in place and we encourage you to use them.

✔ Social distancing will remain.

✔ Regular cleaning of our interactive exhibits will still take place.

This guidance will stay in place until further notice.