Previous exhibitions


Make Yourself Comfortable at Chatsworth
28 March - 23 October

Just like generations of their family before them, the current Duke and Duchess are keen to showcase the work of today’s brightest creatives. In 2015 we turned to contemporary furniture designers to bring to light new stories about the house and its historic collection. Each seat was chosen for its connection to an aspect of Chatsworth. The seats became a bridge between what was considered contemporary and exciting in the past, with today’s vision of design that is boundary pushing or desirable.

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Beyond Limits
14 September - 25 October

Guest curated by Tim Marlow, Director of Artistic Programmes at The Royal Academy of Arts, the 2015 exhibition featured more than 30 monumental sculptures created by Britain's leading artists from the past 65 years.

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The Grand Tour
4 July - 20 September

Chatsworth joined forces with Nottingham Contemporary, Derby Museums and the Harley Foundation, to create a contemporary ‘Grand Tour’ of Nottinghamshire and Derbyshire’s cultural history and landscape. Artist Pablo Bronstein exhibited a rare survey of drawings inspired by Chatsworth’s baroque architecture in the New Gallery along with a very large drawing in the Old Master Drawings Cabinet, which ran simultaneously with an exhibition at Nottingham Contemporary curated by Bronstein and featured a large number of loans from the Devonshire Collection as well as works by the artist.

Quest, an exhibition of monumental ceramics
26 September - 25 October

Quest, an exhibition of monumental sculptures in the Inner Court by Alexander Macdonald-Buchanan, sets up a conversation between three juxtaposing groups of ceramic sculpture.

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Michael Craig-Martin at Chatsworth
16 March - 29 June

A major display of contemporary sculpture in the garden with new works made specifically for this exhibition. In the house, Michael Craig-Martin brings his own approach to highlighting sculpture from the Devonshire collection and selects visually arresting portraits for the Old Master Drawings Cabinet.

Old Master Drawings Cabinet - Portraits
16 March - 29 June

Curated by the artist Michael Craig-Martin as part of his exhibition at Chatsworth, the drawings have been chosen around the theme of portraiture. The display complements the exhibition of recent works by the artist in the gardens, and a curated sculpture trail through the house.

Chatsworth in Wartime
4 April 2014 - 4 January 2015

This exhibition in the New Gallery marks the centenary of the outbreak of the First World War and the 75th anniversary of the outbreak of the Second World War.  Both estate workers and the Cavendish family and relations fought on the front line from the Somme to Gallipoli. Explore life on the home front during the First World War, the impact of the war effort on the estate and the contribution made by women. During the Second World War, Chatsworth housed a girl's boarding school, Penrhos College. The State Drawing room will be returned to its appearance as a dormitory, complete with beds and the original wardrobe, stored at Chatsworth since the girls moved out in March 1946.

Old Master Drawings Cabinet - Conflict in Art
1 July 2014 - 30 April 2015

A selection of Old Master Drawings from the Devonshire Collection with scenecs of historic and mythological battles with works by Raphael, Van Dyck and Mantegna's famous engraving Battle of the Sea-gods.


William Turnbull at Chatsworth 
10 March - 30 June 2013 

An exhibition of Scottish artist William Turnbull's work, sculpture, paintings and drawings in the North Sketch Gallery and in the garden, curated by Clare Lilley from the Yorkshire Sculpture Park. 

Old Master Drawings Cabinet - Landscapes 
10 March - 31 July 2013 

The art of the landscape, including drawings by Rembrandt, was celebrated in the second display in the new Old Master Drawings Cabinet. 

Emma Tennant at Chatsworth 
24 March - 30 June 2013 

The Duke's sister paints favourite plants at home and away. Botanical artist and sister of the Duke of Devonshire, Emma Tennant exhibited watercolours recording the garden at Chatsworth over the course of a year. 

XXXX: A series of 19 Lithographic prints by Emma McGuire 
Mid July to 8 November 2013 

With pictures of real cage fights taken during a residency with the Renzo Gracie Fight Club in New York, Emma McGuire captures the forms of the cage fighters as a harmonious and beautifully choreographed dance.

A Georgian Summer 
27 July - 29 August 2013 

Celebrating the bicentenary of the publication of Pride & Prejudice. An exhibition in the New Gallery and summer events in the garden. 

Old Master Drawings Cabinet - Renaissance to Rococo: Designs for the luxury arts 
3 August to 8 November 2013 

To complement the Modern Makers exhibition, designs for interiors and luxury goods in the Old Master Drawings collection were on display, by artists from Holbein to Watteau. 

Beyond Limits
9 September to 27 October 2013 

The eighth annual Sotheby's Beyond Limits sculpture exhibition in the garden. Showcasing a selection of more than 20 monumental sculptures by different artists from around the world including Allen Jones, Thomas Heatherwick, Tony Cragg and Marc Quinn.  

Modern Makers 
18 September to 23 December 2013

For the first time contemporary applied art was showcased in the New Gallery. Makers including Joseph Walsh, Maisie Broadhead and Junko Mori created furniture, ceramics, metalwork and textiles to create a fresh take on our own State rooms.


Modern British Masterpieces: Frank and Cheryl Cohen at Chatsworth
19 March - 10 June 2012 

Renowned collectors of contemporary art, this was a rare opportunity to see key works from Frank and Cheryl Cohen's private collection spanning the last 40 years. Artists represented in the selection included L.S. Lowry, Stanley Spencer, Edward Burra and Eduardo Paolozzi.

Caro at Chatsworth
28 March - 1 July 2012

'Caro at Chatsworth', a collection of new and old work spanning four decades by Sir Anthony Caro. Early steel sculptures, works from the renowned series 'Flats' and the more recent 'Goodwood Steps' were shown around the Canal Pond.

Diamond Jubilee Display
2 June - end of August 2012

To mark the Diamond Jubilee of Her Majesty the Queen, the Oak Room looked back to recent royal coronations that have been attended by the Dukes of Devonshire. Historic robes worn by Deborah Devonshire and the future 12th Duke were displayed with footage of the Coronation showing the Duke and his grandmother, Mary Devonshire.

World Class: Masterpieces from the Devonshire Collection
01 July - 09 November 2012

For the first time in over 100 years, Old Master Drawings from the Devonshire Collection went on display to the visiting public.

Considered the greatest historic family collection outside the Royal Collection, the Devonshire Collection of Old Master Drawings includes more than 3000 works from both the Italian and Northern Schools. A selection of twelve of the finest drawings were selected for display in a purpose-built space that not only provides the necessary environmental conditions for these masterpieces, but also recreates the effect of a historic collector's cabinet.

This exhibition was the first in a rolling programme of displays, and included drawings by Leonardo da Vinci, Rembrandt van Rijn, Raphael and Sir Anthony van Dyck.

A Hundred Years of House Parties
10 July - 23 December

This exhibition in the New Gallery celebrated the glory days of theatricals, society parties and shooting weekends, looking at life above and below stairs.


Britain's most eligible bachelor: The 6th Duke of Devonshire
28 May 2011 - 23 Dec 2011

The inaugural exhibition for a brand new exhibition space, the New Gallery. This exhibition celebrated the life of William Spencer Cavendish, 6th Duke of Devonshire (1790-1858), and marked the bicentenary of his accession to the dukedom.