Kaleidoscope: Colour and Sequence in 1960s British Art

15 July 2017 - 24 September 2017

An Arts Council Collection Touring Exhibition

British art of the 1960s is noted for its bold, artificial colour, alluring surfaces and capricious shapes and forms, yet these exuberant qualities are often underpinned by a strong sense of order, founded on repetition, sequence and symmetry. Bringing together outstanding examples of painting and sculpture from the Arts Council Collection and other major UK collections, Kaleidoscope examines 1960s visual art through a fresh and surprising lens, bringing into view the relationship between colour and form, rationality and irrationality, order and waywardness.

As the first Arts Council Collection survey of 1960s British art in over twenty years, Kaleidoscope assumes a wide angle, looking across media and movements to find fresh correspondences. From this perspective, the mind-bending surfaces of Op Art, the flattened repetition of Pop, the mathematical order of Constructivism, and the sequential placement of brightly-coloured abstract units found in New Generation sculpture find a common language shaped by sequence and symmetry.

Kaleidoscope represents the work of over twenty artists including: David Annesley, Anthony Caro, Robyn Denny, Tess Jaray, Phillip King, Kim Lim, Mary Martin, Eduardo Paolozzi, Bridget Riley, Tim Scott, Richard Smith, William Tucker and William Turnbull. The exhibition will be accompanied by a fully-illustrated publication featuring a new essay by Sam Cornish, the co-curator of the exhibition. 

Visit our Events page for more information on talks, workshops and other events relating to Kaleidoscope.

DOWNLOAD the Kaleidescope Education Pack written by teachers to inspire ideas and ways of working with the exhibition.


Longside Gallery, Yorkshire Sculpture Park
1 April – 18 June 2017

Nottingham Lakeside Arts, University of Nottingham
15 July – 24 September 2017

Mead Gallery, Warwick Arts Centre, University of Warwick
5 October – 9 December 2017

Walker Art Gallery, National Museums Liverpool
24 February – 3 June 2018


Venue: See dates above



The Arts Council Collection is the UK's most widely seen collection of modern and contemporary art.

With nearly 8,000 works by over 2,000 artists, it can be seen in exhibitions and public displays across the country and beyondThis website offers unprecedented access to the Collection, and information about each work can be found on this site.