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Together for Bedford

Together for Bedford: An exhibition of Children’s Work from The Harpur Trust Art Competition

29 June – 8 September 2024

Sir William Harpur Gallery – Free Entry

An exciting exhibition of local children’s art work based around the theme of ‘Together For Bedford’. Pupils aged 4 - 18 years are invited to take part in the competition which ties in with The Harpur Trust’s new plan inspired by the peopleof Bedford and its vision of the borough as a community where everyone can thrive.


The exhibition explores what does an ideal community look like? With students taking inspiration from what communities they belong to; from where they live or go to school, to a sports team they are a member of or their cultural identity. It celebrates what community in Bedford means to them and how they get involved or inspired.



Community Portrait Exhibition

28 September – 23 February 2025

Sir William Harpur Gallery – Free Entry

In partnership with Bedford Creative Arts and Fuji film

This exhibition explores the history of photography from 1840s glass-plate techniques to the latest digital technology through images taken by local school children, Bedford College students, community groups and professional photographers.  

Delivered in partnership with Fujifilm and Bedford Creative Arts it showcases the Bedford community through their own portraits, whilst inviting the viewer to reflect on the art of image-making through the decades.

Fuji BCA Logo


Peter Brathwaite

Peter Brathwaite – Rediscovering Black Portraiture

Opening April – Free Entry

During the first lockdown in 2020, with all his performances cancelled, local baritone, artist, broadcaster and writer Peter Brathwaite began researching and reimagining more than 100 artworks. These artworks featured portraits of black sitters, as part of the online #GettyMuseumChallenge to use household objects to restage famous paintings. He called the photographic series Rediscovering Black Portraiture.

Brathwaite's exhibition at The Higgins Bedford features a collection of his most fascinating images. His works emphasise issues of power, privilege, and identity, as well as the absence or marginalisation of black individuals in European art.


Peter Brathwaite’s restaged version of The Virgin of Guadalupe, and the original artwork, right. Anon, ‘The Virgin of Guadalupe’. Oil painting, 1745. Wellcome Collection. Attribution-Non Commercial 4.0 International (CC BY-NC 4.0) / Cropped from original and colour saturated.