Curated by Simon Armitage, our 2017 creative partner

Who was Branwell Brontë? This exhibition, curated by poet Simon Armitage, invited us inside the mind and world of the notorious Brontë brother in a search for answers to this question. Inspired by an early poem sent to William Wordsworth by the optimistic and precocious twenty-year old, Armitage explored Branwell’s colourful personal history through his writings, drawings and possessions, displayed at the Parsonage alongside newly created installations.  
Highlights included a series of new poems by Armitage in response to Branwell’s belongings in the Museum collection, a dramatic recreation of Branwell’s studio designed in collaboration with the production team of the BBC’s To Walk Invisible, and the actual letter and poem posted to Wordsworth, loaned by the Wordsworth Trust especially for the bicentenary. In delving into the life and times of the infamous Branwell, Mansions in the Sky provoked new insights into the charismatic and complicated brother of Charlotte, Emily and Anne.