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Past exhibition

Sensing the Unseen

Step into Gossaert's 'Adoration'

9 December 2020 – 13 June 2021

Admission free

Location: Room 1

Take your first step into Jan Gossaert’s world of intricate detail, technical mastery and rich meaning in a new Gallery experience where you’ll be surrounded by the sights and sounds of his 500-year-old masterpiece.  

In 'The Adoration of the Kings’, Gossaert has compressed time and space into a richly detailed, imagined setting where some elements of this familiar Christian scene are immediately clear and others are hidden for us to discover: the weave of fabric, Gossaert’s fingerprint in the green glaze where he blotted it with his hand, thistles and dead nettles, hairs sprouting from a wart on a cheek, a tiny pearl, a hidden angel... 

To help you uncover the unseen, Balthasar - the Black king, pictured here with a gift of myrrh at Christ’s side - will share his journey through a world on the brink of change to be present at this moment of transformation.

Through soundscapes, spoken word, hi-resolution digital imagery and gesture-based interaction you will go on your own personal journey to discover not only the visual riches of the painting but also why it tells more than a Christmas story. 

This is an opportunity to not only stand in front of the painting but immerse yourself in its world and the artistry that built it. 


We want as many people as possible to be able to enjoy 'Sensing the Unseen'. 

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COVID-19 safety

The room has capacity for between three and six visitors with social distancing; the ‘pods’ are designed for one or two people (if in the same household or bubble) and can also accommodate an adult and two small children.

'Sensing the Unseen: At home

Can’t make it to the Gallery? ‘Sensing the Unseen: Step into Gossaert's 'Adoration, mobile edition let's you enjoy the 'sonified' painting experience in the comfort of your own home.

Launch the experience

Image above: Detail from Jan Gossaert, 'The Adoration of the Kings', 1510-15

Exhibition supported by

The Capricorn Foundation in memory of Mr H J Hyams

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