Lecture or talk Our Friends

In the Travail of War Reborn | The Scottish National Gallery during World War II

Scottish National Gallery Hawthornden Lecture Theatre
  • Wednesday 8 March, 6–8pm
£14, Friends and guests

Booking essential


When war was declared in September 1939 the Scottish National Gallery was closed and its artworks were decanted to stately homes in the Scottish Borders. The wartime activities of the National Gallery in London are relatively well-known, however, those of the Scottish National Gallery have been little discussed. The evacuation of the collection left a large empty building in the heart of Edinburgh, but an exciting new use was found for it. Between 1941 and early 1945 over 60 temporary exhibitions were held there. Patricia Allerston, Deputy Director of European and Scottish Art, considers these wartime exhibitions, the subjects of which ranged widely, from British war artists' works and contemporary art by Allied men and women in uniform, to exhibitions of students' and children’s art.

Catalogue of the Poland Exhibition held in the National Gallery of Scotland in Autumn 1942, produced by The Baynard Press, London [speaker’s own copy]

Event accessibility

Event accessibility

  • Wheelchair access
  • Hearing loop

Gallery facilities

Detailed information on accessibility at the National Galleries of Scotland

We are currently working on improving our galleries. During this time some rooms will be closed and some facilities will be temporarily removed. There will be limited disabled access to some areas.

There is limited on street parking close by including for those with a blue badge.

  • Wifi
  • Wheelchair access
  • Accessible toilets
  • Wheelchairs available
  • Public toilets
  • Lockers (£1/£2)
  • Baby changing facilities
  • Seating throughout
  • Bike rack
  • Café
  • Restaurant
Getting here

Getting here

The Scottish National Gallery can be found just off Princes Street in the city centre.

Venue map
  • Open daily, 10am–5pm
The Mound, Edinburgh, EH2 2EL

Lecture or talk Our Friends

In the Travail of War Reborn | The Scottish National Gallery during World War II

Booking essential
Our Friends

Our Friends

Friends of the Galleries get free unlimited entry to all exhibitions, and enjoy a wide range of exclusive benefits including early exhibition access, special events and 10% discount in our cafes.

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