28/ 07/ 2023 – Lecture 3 min
The Lord of the Rings, the new exhibition !
If stories shape our imagination, it is images that bring it to life. From June 25, 2023, to January 28, 2024, the Hélène and Édouard Leclerc Foundation in Landerneau, in Finistère, invites us to explore one of the richest and most complex literary worlds, that of J.R.R. Tolkien, through the artistic lens of John Howe. Recognized for his involvement in the visual conception of the famous cinematic trilogy ‘The Lord of the Rings,’ the Canadian artist unveils the drawings that transformed Tolkien’s words into an unforgettable visual epic.
The Artist Behind the Myth
John Howe played a fundamental role in how millions of people visualize Middle-earth. His work, more than a mere interpretation, is a true embodiment of the characters, landscapes, and objects imagined by Tolkien. Whether you are a newcomer to Tolkien’s worlds or a devoted reader of the ‘Annals of Middle-earth,’ this exhibition is a unique opportunity to delve deeper into this multifaceted universe that has inspired both literature and cinema.
A Total Immersion Atmosphere
The exhibition is not just a succession of framed drawings or preliminary sketches. No, it is a journey. Upon entering, you are immediately enveloped in an atmosphere that invites daydreaming. Dimmed lights, shifting shadows, and even music all contribute to an immersive experience. You don’t simply observe the artworks; you live with them, walk through the forests of Lothlórien, feel the freshness of the mountains of Moria, and almost touch the cold steel of Glamdring, Gandalf’s sword.
Knowledge in the Service of Passion
While the exhibition charms with its atmosphere, it also educates through its content. Large reproductions of iconic drawings are accompanied by numerous explanatory texts, creating an educational path that will appeal to both enthusiasts and experts. You will discover how every stroke of John Howe’s pencil was nourished by a deep respect for the original text, how the artist captured Tolkien’s spirit to convey it in powerful and evocative images.
More than an Exhibition, an Experience
The goal of this exhibition is clearly to provoke reflection on how visual art and literature can intersect to create a total work of art. Howe’s drawings are not just illustrations; they are a gateway to a world of extraordinary richness. When you leave, you will not only be more knowledgeable but also more aware of the power of storytelling and art as conveyors of emotion and thought.
For lovers of Middle-earth, for art enthusiasts, for those curious about the magic contained in words and images, this exhibition is a must-visit. It is an epic journey in itself, an adventure that takes you far while bringing you back to the essence of what makes us human: our need to dream, create, and share. Through his works, John Howe reminds us that art is not merely decoration but an open window to infinite worlds. And this window is wide open in Landerneau; don’t wait to take a look and let yourself be enchanted.
Book your tickets, plan your visit, and embark on this graphic odyssey that, far beyond the mountains and forests of Middle-earth, will take you to the very heart of the human imagination.”