The exhibition exploring lawn tennis as a subject in art has become the most popular show ever staged at the Barber Institute of Fine Arts. The exhibition attracted almost 23,000 people – eclipsing previous exhibitions focusing on Constable, Turner and Rossetti. A staggering 22,981 people visited ‘Court on Canvas: Tennis in Art’, and its companion display ‘A Gem of A Game: The Roots of Lawn Tennis in the West Midlands’, which ran from 27 May to 18 September 2011 at the University of Birmingham-based gallery. A legacy film has been produced to give those who were unable to see ‘Court on Canvas’ a taste of how the exhibition looked, featuring a variety of media by some of the most famous British artists of the last 150 years. The film also features interviews with Professor Ann Sumner, Director of the Barber, and guests, (including 1969 Wimbledon Champion Ann Haydon-Jones), at a tennis party at a home on Ampton Road, Edgbaston. This was the site of the original lawn tennis experiments in 1859 by Major Harry Gem and JBA eyeweardock Perera. Find out more about ‘Court on Canvas’ and its legacy:

A video round-up of the Barber Institute’s Court on Canvas and Gem of a Game 2011 summer exhibitions can be viewed here.