The Art Gallery of York

Whether you love the Old Masters or contemporary sculpture is more your thing, there’s an art gallery york to suit you. After a major redevelopment project, the gallery has 60% more exhibition space, an artist garden and Yorkshire’s Centre for Ceramic Art.

But the recovery isn’t without its hurdles. The Art Newspaper reports that Malin still owes money to artists and vendors.


The art gallery york has a stunning collection of paintings from the 14th century to contemporary. These are supplemented by watercolours, drawings and prints. The gallery also hosts a number of touring exhibitions each year.

The building was built for the second Yorkshire Fine Art and Industrial Exhibition in 1879 and became the City Art Gallery in 1892. It exhibits a diverse range of works and subjects, including a strong group of 17th-century British portraits; paintings of the Camden Town Group from the 19th century; and a significant collection of 20th-century marine and sporting art.

This season, ‘Bloom’ brings together botanical artworks from the gallery’s collection alongside key loans to explore flowers, plants and gardens as sources of inspiration for artists. The exhibition will feature still life paintings and landscapes, as well as garden-themed sculptures and installations, all of which reflect the importance of flora to our enjoyment, wellbeing and identity. The exhibition is accompanied by family friendly artist led workshops, under 5s storytelling and fun trails around the Gallery.


As well as Old Masters and modern British art, the gallery is home to one of the UK’s largest collections of ceramics. Its Centre of Ceramic Art (CoCA) is housed in a new mezzanine level and gallery, designed by architects Ushida Findlay Simpson Brown as part of an PS8m renovation of the museum.

The CoCA showcases the gallery’s extensive collection of ceramics and pottery, formed primarily from large gifts from significant private collectors. Its objects retain the personality and passions of their creators, providing a unique insight into the development of the British studio ceramic movement.

The galleries display a wide range of contemporary ceramics, from Kim Simonsson’s vivid, mossy sculptures to Katsuyo Aoki’s porcelain masterworks and Beth Cavener’s animalistic inventions. This demonstrates the gallery’s commitment to maintaining a rigorous contemporary program whilst retaining close connections with the medium’s rich past. The centre also exhibits work from the prestigious Anthony Shaw collection. The gallery is open daily and admission is free.


One of Britain’s foremost sculptors, Anthony Caro was invited to York University during the 1973–74 academic year to be an artist-in-residence. During this period of intense work he cut, created, assembled, re-worked, and finalized over thirty-five works.

Sculptures of varying scale are displayed throughout the gallery. From the smaller Burton Gallery with its classical feel to the larger central main or CoCA galleries, there is something for everyone.

In the sculpture garden carved woodwork is displayed alongside the more contemporary bronzes and stone pieces. For example, The Whole Person, by Lionel Thomas represents York University’s dedication to educating the whole person.

The Mobilizing Inuit Cultural Heritage grant enabled Ruben Komangapik to sculpt Ahqahizu, the first Indigenous addition to York’s outdoor sculpture collection. Sculpted in Stanstead granite, a rock specific to Quebec, the piece was carved using a technique unique to Inuit culture that requires high skill and patience to produce. It took over 200 days to complete the twenty-six-tonne piece.

Prints & Drawings

The Gallery’s holdings of prints and drawings provide a rich complement to the paintings and sculpture in the public galleries. The collections of Old Master prints — including works by Albrecht Durer, Rembrandt van Rijn, Giovanni Battista Piranesi, and Canaletto — and 18th-century French prints are especially strong. In addition, the Gallery has an important collection of artists’ sketchbooks.

Gifts, bequests, and combination gift/purchase arrangements have augmented the collection with many outstanding works of art on paper, such as an exemplary group of 19th-century American watercolors; the Arthur Ross Collection of architectural books and prints; the Dave and Reba Williams Collection of American drawings; the Judith Rothschild Foundation Collection of contemporary drawings; and the world’s largest institutional repository of Sol LeWitt wall drawings.

Whether you love the Old Masters or contemporary sculpture, York Art Gallery has something for everyone. It also hosts the biggest annual celebration of Yorkshire ceramics, a Centre for Ceramic Art and is home to one of the UK’s leading art libraries.

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