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A two-year project to revamp York Art Gallery gets underway

PUBLISHED: 22:05 20 January 2013 | UPDATED: 22:38 20 February 2013

How York Art Gallery will look after its £8 million facelift

How York Art Gallery will look after its £8 million facelift

York Art Gallery has closed, but people in the city are far from glum because, come Easter 2015, they will have a fantastic new visual arts space.

York Art Gallery has closed, but people in the city are far from glum because, come Easter 2015, they will have a fantastic new visual arts space.


Grants from the National Lottery through Arts Council England, the Foyle Foundation, Sir Siegmund Warburgs Voluntary Settlement, Shepherd Group and numerous private legacies mean York Museums Trust now has 7 million of the 8 million it needs to redevelop the gallery.


While the trust, which runs the gallery, works hard to secure the rest of the funding, the building is now being prepared for the two-year development to begin. Chief executive Janet Barnes said: We are delighted that organisations have shown their faith in our plans by pledging funds. Without such funding the development would not have been possible on the scale we believe is necessary to transform the gallery into one of the best in the country.


Cluny Macpherson, regional director of the Arts Council in Yorkshire, added: York attracts cultural tourists from across the UK and the rest of the globe.


This investment in York Art Gallery will enrich the citys offer and create a fantastic contemporary visual arts space for the people of Yorkshire and visitors from further afield, hosting ambitious contemporary exhibition programmes as well as the new Centre for British Studio Ceramics.


This project will help audiences and artists enjoy great contemporary art in a visitor-friendly, upgraded historic building in the heart of the city.


I cant wait to come and see it for myself. When the gallery reopens at Easter in 2015, there will be 60 per cent more exhibition space alongside the newly-established Centre for British Studio Ceramics, which will be housed in a section of the original Victorian roof space.


York Art Gallery currently holds the worlds most extensive and representative collection of British Studio Ceramics, thanks to the acquisition of collections from Dean Milner-White, WA Ismay and Henry Rothschild and the recent long term loan of Anthony Shaws collection.


Opening up the roof space and creating a new upper South Gallery will make use of the height of the Victorian building, adding some 450 sq m of high quality gallery space.


The Centre for British Studio Ceramics will showcase the gallerys world class collections of more than 5,000 pieces which span the 20th century and come right up to the present day.


Displays and special exhibitions will be supported by archives and visible open storage for much of the collections.


The 8 million development will also create a suite of three ground floor galleries to show more ambitious and high profile exhibitions.


It will also double the existing learning space and will create a new sculpture garden, which will link to the existing Museum Gardens.

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