The New Art Gallery Walsall

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The New Art Gallery Walsall
Walsall art gallery.jpg
General information
Town or city Walsall
Country England52°35′8.40″N 1°59′9.27″W / 52.5856667°N 1.9859083°W / 52.5856667; -1.9859083Coordinates: 52°35′8.40″N 1°59′9.27″W / 52.5856667°N 1.9859083°W / 52.5856667; -1.9859083
Construction started 1995
Completed 2000 (2000)
Cost £21 million
Client Walsall Metropolitan Borough Council
Design and construction
Architect Caruso St John
Structural engineer Arup
Website
www.thenewartgallerywalsall.org.uk

The New Art Gallery Walsall is a modern and contemporary art gallery sited in the centre of the West Midlands town of Walsall, England. It was built with £21 million of public funding, including £15.75 million from the UK National Lottery and additional money from the European Regional Development Fund and City Challenge.[1][2][3]

The Gallery is funded by Walsall Council and Arts Council England;[4] this funding is further supplemented by its own income generation. Admission is free.[5] Its first Director was Peter Jenkinson. In May 2005, former BALTIC director Stephen Snoddy was appointed as Director.

Architecture[edit]

Designed by the architects Caruso St John after winning an international design competition, it opened in January 2000, replacing the town's old gallery and an arts centre that had been closed by the Council almost a decade earlier.[6] It was officially opened by Queen Elizabeth II on 5 May 2000, during her visit to the West Midlands.[7][8] The New Art Gallery's stark building won several architectural awards and attracted over 237,000 visitors in its opening year.[9] In 2000, the gallery was shortlisted for the prestigious Sterling Architecture Prize.[10][11]

The five-storey building is clad in pale terracotta and has a floor area of 5,000 square metres (53,820 sq ft).[12] The interior of the Gallery features a heavy use of concrete and 75mm thick[13] douglas fir wooden cladding.[14] The public square surrounding the building was designed by Richard Wentworth and Catherine Yass.[1]

The Gallery has been seen as an attempted instigation of regeneration in the local area.[15][16][17] The architecture has been both praised and criticised, described as both exceptionally good and also as indulgent.[18] There have been a number of minor alterations to the building since its opening, including changing of the ground floor retail area into a cafe, and addition of more windows around its entrance.

In 2006, Floor 4 of the gallery was transformed from a restaurant area into a new gallery space.[19] The gallery space with 8m high ceiling has enabled the Gallery to present a further programme of exhibitions, in addition to its main temporary exhibition galleries. This has included exhibitions by regional and internationally renowned artists including David Batchelor,[20] Richard Billingham[21] and Leo Fitzmaurice.[22][23]

In 2012, artist Sarah Staton was commissioned to design a new sculpture terrace for the Gallery, opening to the public later that same year the space converted a previously underused area of patio on floor 4.[24][25]

Collections[edit]

Vincent van Gogh - Sorrow

The Gallery houses the fixed Garman Ryan Collection of sculptures and paintings by modern masters including a large selection of work by Jacob Epstein and many significant works by European artists including Van Gogh, Monet, Turner, Corot, Renoir and Constable represented in prints, sketches, drawings, paintings and sculptures.[26][27][28] The collection was donated to the people of Walsall in 1973 by Epstein's late wife Kathleen Garman (Lady Epstein) and her friend Sally Ryan.[29]

In 2006, the gallery acquired the Epstein Archive, a collection of photographs, manuscripts, sketches and correspondence between Jacob Epstein and his family and friends, patrons, buyers and galleries. In 2009 Bob and Roberta Smith was commissioned to work alongside Archive Curator Neil Lebeter to reveal the previously undocumented and unseen Epstein Archive to audiences.[30][31] The initiative forms part of New Ways of Curating, a project initiated by Arts Council England.

The basement art store holds works that are not on display

The permanent collection of works at the Gallery ranges from Victorian paintings of local interest through to works by contemporary artists, such as Catherine Yass and Fiona Banner. Through the Contemporary Art Society Special Collection scheme, the New Art Gallery Walsall was able to add to its collections works by Gavin Turk, Hew Locke, Mike Nelson, Yoshihiro Suda, Dorothy Cross, Laura Ford, Darren Lago, Estelle Thompson, Richard Woods, Yinka Shonibare and Rose Finn-Kelcey. The works that comprise this collection transfer ownership to Walsall Council from the Contemporary Art Society in 2014.[27]

In 2007, the New Art Gallery was awarded £1million through the Art Fund International to collect international contemporary art on the theme of the metropolis. This has included the acquisition of works by Jochem Hendricks, Grazia Toderi, Dynita Singh, Zhang Enli, Christiane Baumgartner, Barry McGee and Nicolas Provost.[32]

Exhibitions[edit]

The temporary exhibition galleries on the third and fourth floor are dedicated to exhibiting contemporary and historic art. The Gallery has held solo exhibitions by artists including Mark Titchner,[33] Toby Ziegler, Conrad Shawcross,[34] Hew Locke,[35] Joana Vasconcelos, Zarina Bhimji, Christopher Le Brun,[36] Gordon Cheung, Adam Dant[37] Gavin Turk and Jonathan Yeo.

Between 2012 and 2013, the Gallery is hosting the first year long display of works by artist Damien Hirst as part of the ARTIST ROOMS on Tour in partnership with Tate.[38]

The New Art Gallery also has a history of exhibiting group shows, beginning with the inaugural exhibition Blue featuring works by artists such as Anish Kapoor, Glen Brown, Barbara Hepworth and Bridget Riley.

The 2009 exhibition Re-Imagining Asia, aimed to explore the meaning and relevance of the term “contemporary Asian art” in the 21st century and within a wider context of globalisation, migration and an increasingly international art world. It featured artists such as Song Dong, exhibiting here in the UK for the first time.[39]

In 2010, the New Art Gallery celebrated its tenth birthday with the exhibition Party!.[19][40]

In 2011, the Gallery hosted the exhibition The Life of The Mind: Love, Sorrow and Obsession, curated by artist Bob and Roberta Smith.[41][42] This included key works by Sarah Lucas, Louise Bourgeois, Tracey Emin and Yayoi Kusama.[43]

Artist residencies[edit]

The gallery has continually supported emerging and established artists from throughout the UK through their regular residency programs. Artists in residence include: a.a.s, Simon and Tom Bloor,[44] Sean Burn,[45] Faye Claridge, Lucienne Cole, Harminder Judge, Juneau Projects,[46] Karin Kihlberg and Reuben Henry,[47] Feng-Ru Lee, Bob and Roberta Smith, Ivan Smith, Yoke and Zoom.[48]

Education work[edit]

The Discovery Gallery, now rebranded Disco, was the first interactive art space of its kind in the country, designed specifically for young visitors and families.[49] Over 60,000 school children have visited The New Art Gallery since 2003, along with 34,000 lifelong learning participants.[50] The Gallery gained the Learning Outside the Classroom quality badge mark in 2009.[50] The New Art Gallery Walsall was one of the first cultural organisations in the UK to take on a Creative Apprentice in 2009.[51]

The Gallery, alongside Ikon Gallery, works in partnership with Birmingham City University to run the Artist Teacher Scheme, a professional development programme for art educators.[52]

Other facilities[edit]

The Art Library

The New Art Gallery has free public Wi-Fi throughout the building.

In 2006, the Gallery opened a free public access Art Library, where visitors are able to gain a more in-depth knowledge of the Gallery's collections, exhibitions and award-winning architecture. Since opening nearly 50,000 people[citation needed] have made use of the specialist collection of books, journals and archive material.

The ground floor café in The New Art Gallery Walsall was transformed into a Costa Coffee store in August 2007.

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b Jodidio, Philip (2006). "Chapter 3: Caruso St John". In Kobler, Florian. Architecture in the United Kingdom. Court, Christiane; Bosser, Jacques. Cologne: Taschen. pp. 44–47. ISBN 3-8228-3972-8. 
  2. ^ http://webarchive.nationalarchives.gov.uk/20110118095356/http:/www.cabe.org.uk/case-studies/new-art-gallery/design
  3. ^ http://www.cloreduffield.org.uk/research/spaceforart/spaceforartfiles/Walsall.doc
  4. ^ http://www.artscouncil.org.uk/funding/browse-regularly-funded-organisations/npo/new-art-gallery-walsall/
  5. ^ http://www.thenewartgallerywalsall.org.uk
  6. ^ http://www.hughpearman.com/articles/walsall2.html
  7. ^ "Queen visits Walsall gallery". The Birmingham Post. 6 May 2000. 
  8. ^ [1]
  9. ^ Ward, David (27 October 2003). "New attractions for a new millennium". The Guardian (London). 
  10. ^ http://www.e-architect.co.uk/awards/stirling_prize_awards.htm
  11. ^ Kennedy, Maev (17 October 2000). "Gallery which regenerated canal area up for prize". The Guardian (London). 
  12. ^ http://www.arup.com/_assets/_download/download15.pdf
  13. ^ St John, Caruso (April 1999). "Walsall Art Gallery, Walsall U.K". Architecture and Urbanisation (343): 57. 
  14. ^ http://www.architecture.com/MemberUpdate/Student/2011/February/Articlesfromourwriters.aspx
  15. ^ Corsane, G. (2005). Heritage, Museums and Galleries: An Introductory Reader. ISBN 0415289467. 
  16. ^ "Has art gallery boom paid off?". BBC News. 16 July 2012. 
  17. ^ http://www.theartnewspaper.com/articles/Hits-and-misses-in-the-regeneration-game/24226
  18. ^ MacLeod, Suzanne (2005-06-01). Reshaping Museum Space. ISBN 9780203483220. 
  19. ^ a b "New Art Gallery 10th anniversary". BBC News. 9 February 2010. 
  20. ^ http://www.flickr.com/photos/gary_crutchley/4412063840/
  21. ^ http://www.bbc.co.uk/blackcountry/content/articles/2006/05/18/photographer_richard_billingham_feature.shtml
  22. ^ http://www.a-n.co.uk/interface/reviews/single/1492811
  23. ^ http://midlandarts.wordpress.com/2011/06/06/leo-fitzmaurice-new-art-gallery-walsall/
  24. ^ http://www.sarahstaton.com/work/tag:commissions
  25. ^ http://www.axisweb.org/ofSARF.aspx?SELECTIONID=170479
  26. ^ A Shared Vision: The Garman Ryan Collection, by Shelia McGregor, Merrell Publishers
  27. ^ a b http://www.thenewartgallerywalsall.org.uk/collections-and-library
  28. ^ http://www.britainsfinest.co.uk/museums/museums.cfm/searchazref/80001323NEWA
  29. ^ http://newwaysofcurating.org/category/news/
  30. ^ http://newwaysofcurating.org/2011/10/new-archive-room-unveiled/
  31. ^ http://www.artfund.org/what-to-see/museums-and-galleries/the-new-art-gallery-walsall
  32. ^ https://www.walsall.gov.uk/News/Story/2012/4/4/New_Art_Gallery_injects_£1million_into_economy
  33. ^ O'Reilly, Sally (2 September 2005). "Conrad Shawcross". The Guardian (London). 
  34. ^ http://www.artdaily.com/section/news/index.asp?int_sec=11&int_new=13622&int_modo=1#.UWvdvkJgP8s
  35. ^ Glover, Michael (5 March 2008). "Christopher Le Brun, New Art Gallery, Walsall". The Independent (London). 
  36. ^ http://www.halesgallery.com/news/_75/
  37. ^ http://www.tate.org.uk/whats-on/other-venues/display/damien-hirst-new-art-gallery-walsall
  38. ^ http://www.spaghettigazetti.com/2009/01/re-imagining-asia-exhibition-at-new-art.html
  39. ^ Glover, Michael (18 March 2010). "Party!, New Art Gallery, Walsall". The Independent (London). 
  40. ^ http://www.thisistomorrow.info/viewArticle.aspx?artId=681
  41. ^ Glover, Michael (9 February 2011). "The Life of the Mind: Love, Sorrow and Obsession, New Art Gallery, Walsall". The Independent (London). 
  42. ^ http://www.halesgallery.com/news/_93/
  43. ^ Simonandtombloor.co.uk
  44. ^ Sean Burn's Blog
  45. ^ Juneauprojects.co.uk
  46. ^ karinkihlberg-reubenhenry.org
  47. ^ Yokeandzoom.com
  48. ^ http://www.bbc.co.uk/blackcountry/culture/2003/01/the_new_art_gallery_walsall.shtml
  49. ^ a b http://www2.walsall.gov.uk/CMISWebPublic/Binary.ashx?Document=11720
  50. ^ http://webarchive.nationalarchives.gov.uk/20090209055604/ccskills.org.uk/qualifications/creativeapprenticeships/tabid/82/default.aspx
  51. ^ http://www.bcu.ac.uk/biad/courses/artist-teacher-scheme

External links[edit]