Hull 2017: Michelangelo, Matisse and Rembrandts on show

Rembrandt's Asian elephant, c 1637, black chalk and charcoal Image copyright Trustees of the British Museum
Image caption Rembrandt's Asian elephant, c1637, in black chalk and charcoal, is on loan from the British Museum

Art by some of the most prominent great masters, including Michelangelo, Matisse and Rembrandt, are on show in Hull as it embarks on its year as the latest UK City of Culture.

Lines of Thought is a free exhibition of 70 line drawings spanning more than 500 years from the British Museum's prestigious collection.

Leonardo da Vinci, Dürer, Degas, Rubens, Monet, Cézanne and Bridget Riley are also featured.

It runs until 28 February.

Prof Glenn Burgess, acting vice-chancellor of the University of Hull where the exhibition is held, said it could be "the single greatest gathering of artistic talent ever seen in Hull".

Lines of Thought is a partnership between Hull 2017, the British Museum, the University of Hull and the Bridget Riley Art Foundation.

Curators said the works had been arranged by "types of thinking rather than period or style" in order to explore the "creative impulses" behind the pieces.

Georgia Mallin of the British Museum said the London attraction offers 10 national exhibitions a year, but the show in Hull is "arguably the best selection of masterpieces from [the British Museum's] Prints and Drawings collection that we've ever been able to offer".

Image copyright PA

Martin Green, Hull 2017's CEO and director, said the show had kicked off an "outstanding" year for visual arts as part of the City of Culture programme.

"The investment by the University of Hull to strengthen its already significant cultural activity is going to help ensure Hull's reputation as a destination for art lovers and culture vultures," he said.

Lines of Thought will visit Poole and Belfast before travelling to the US.

The city's year of culture was launched on 1 January with a giant fireworks display, watched by about 60,000 people.

The fireworks display was billed as bigger than London's New Year's Eve event and included 15,000 fireworks to music by some of Hull's most famous artists.

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Image copyright PA
Image caption The light show on New Year's Day told the story of Hull over the past 100 years

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