Exhibitions:
Mercer Art Gallery

A Yorkshire Life in Pattern
9th September 2017 – 7th January 2018

This exhibition tells the story of a designer whose work was profoundly influenced by a love of the Yorkshire landscape and was nearly lost forever but for a chance discovery in a Yorkshire saleroom.


Displaying 100 designs from the archive collection and material loaned from Sheila’s family and friends, this exhibition not only offers the opportunity to immerse yourself in the colourful optimism of mid-century pattern but also to discover more about Sheila Bownas herself.

May Catt, the senior curator at the Mercer Art Gallery has worked closely with Chelsea to bring the show together.

“We are delighted to be working with Chelsea in continuing to raise the profile of Sheila Bownas and her 20th-century designs. Holding the exhibition here in Harrogate also means the work will be shown together in Yorkshire for the first time, which is particularly poignant given that Sheila was from Linton and spent so much of her life there.”

Download PDF (4 MB)

  • 1950's design by Sheila Bownas inspired by day to day life in the village where she grew up, Linton, North Yorkshire
    1950's design by Sheila Bownas inspired by day to day life in the village where she grew up, Linton, North Yorkshire
  • A young Sheila Bownas relaxing on the village green in Linton, North Yorkshire
    A young Sheila Bownas relaxing on the village green in Linton, North Yorkshire