NHS recovery nurses from Kings Mill Hospital (L R) Bethany Ransome Alina Burghiu Natalie Barlow Leah Ward and Corrine Dallison


Nurses who worked on the frontline during the Covid-19 pandemic have been welcomed to Nottingham Castle Trust’s newest exhibition, which celebrates the remarkable lived experiences of women – including those working in the NHS.

Five nurses from Kings Mill Hospital in Mansfield were invited to spend the day with their loved ones exploring all the Castle has to offer including its ambitious, new exhibition that uniquely examines the roles and lives of women over the past century. Titled Laura Knight & Caroline Walker: A Female Gaze, this home-grown exhibition features work by two important female British artists, brought together for the first time.

Walker’s pieces feature recent works based on time spent within the maternity ward where her daughter was born, focusing on the midwives, NHS workers, nurses and doctors. A fitting subject for the five nurses who all worked on Covid-19 wards during the pandemic.

Recovery nurse, Corrine Dallison, said:

“It was amazing to be able to spend the day with colleagues and loved ones in the beautiful setting of Nottingham Castle, and even more so to see an art exhibition that reflected so much beauty in the roles and lives of women. We were all particularly moved by the pieces depicting NHS workers, which is something none of us has experienced before.”

Walker observes the calm energy of dedicated health care professionals, where the women and midwives are often disguised behind PPE and scrubs, as well as charging the canvas with the heightened emotion that depicts the pain (and joy) of labour, but also the anxieties of giving birth during a viral pandemic.

By pairing Laura Knight’s work with Caroline Walker’s, the exhibition not only looks at developments by women artists over the past 100 years, but also considers the shared themes and examines why the female figure and the role women serve in society is still such a strong and rich subject matter.

The exhibition runs from 19 March to 5 June 2022 and is part of the general admission price. To find out what’s on at Nottingham Castle visit: https://www.nottinghamcastle.org.uk/whats-on/

Posted on 27 April 2022

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Jack Woolley