Become a Friend of the Swindon Museumand Art Gallery

For only £10 a year, you can become a Friend and come along to our talks, join us on trips out to places like The Royal Academy and Pallant House Gallery, there's always something going on. To become a Friend or find out more about us, go to the website www.friendsofsmag.org

Monday, 13 March 2017

Revised Opening Hours

Exciting news for all those who love visiting Swindon Museum and Art Gallery, opening hours are being more than doubled from 16 hours a week to 35 hours a week.
Specifically, the building will now be open Tuesday-Saturday from 10am-5pm with one late night opening per month. Friends have been asked if they can help cover the extra opening hours by volunteering to help, I'm hoping we get lots of volunteers, giving yet another reason to join the Friends.
I'm including a photo of the beautiful ceramic piece made by Sarah Purvey, inspired by Basil Beattie's painting, 'Witness VI' which was such a hit in the last very popular main gallery exhibition, 'From Where I'm Standing' in which 10  West Country ceramicists responded to works in the collection. The reason I'm including it, apart from the fact it's delightful, is that it's a recent purchase made by the Friends for The Swindon Collection.
Also a reminder that the talk on Thursday 16 March is by Professor David Ferry and starts at 7.30pm, doors open at 7pm.
I'll also include the press release about the new opening hours and latest information form the museum:


Swindon Museums and Art Gallery opening hours extended
Swindon Museum and Art Gallery (SM&AG) has announced that from 4th April it is extending its opening times from 16 hours a week to 35. Under the new scheme the current facility, based in Apsley House, Bath Road, will more than double its current opening hours.  
The new opening times will start on Tuesday 4th April.  The venue will be open from Tuesdays through Saturdays, from 10am until 5pm and there will be a late-night Thursday opening once a month.
To celebrate the new opening hours, the Museum and Art Gallery will be hosting a celebration weekend on Saturday 1st and Sunday 2nd April. Working with Creative Museums, SM&AG will be open from 10am until 5pm on both days and will be offering creative and fun activities for all the family. Information about the event will be available on the SM&AG Facebook page.
The additional opening hours will prepare the venue to not only support the delivery of a new museum and art gallery, but, more importantly, enable the people of Swindon and further afield to access the wonderful collections. Since holding an exhibition in the heart of Mayfair at the Osborne Samuel Gallery earlier this year, interest in the art and museum collections has thrived amongst local visitors as well as those coming from further away.
In order to meet this increasing demand, and working with the Swindon Museum and Art Gallery Trust who are leading on the project for a new museum and art gallery, these additional hours will help raise the profile of one of the best collections of British Modern Art and make the collection much more accessible. 
The additional opening hours will be funded through the museum and art gallery’s existing budgets, while the Friends of SM&AG will be providing volunteers to help with additional staffing.
The collections are displayed at the museum and art gallery through a series of engaging and beautifully presented exhibitions. Over the past three years, 75% of the Modern British Art has been displayed and three galleries within the museum have been refreshed and updated.  A successful Heritage Lottery Funded project, Archaeology Swindon’s Archaeology in Context, will also see the current Archaeology Gallery refreshed.
The team at Swindon Museum and Art Gallery look forward to even more people visiting this excellent FREE museum and art gallery.
Swindon Museum and Art Gallery, Bath Road, Old Town, Swindon SN1 4BA
email smag@swindon.gov.uk
www.swindonmuseumandartgallery.org.uk
www.facebook.com/MuseumandArtGallery

Ends
For further information please contact Nicki Western, nwestern@swindon.gov.uk or call 01793 466560
Swindon Museum and Art Gallery
The Museum was founded by Charles Gore in 1919 as a place to display his extensive geological collections. Gore was the first curator of the museum and the collections were built up following the fashions of the time, focussing on broad themes rather than local connections. He acquired natural history, egyptological and ethnographic collections, along with archaeological materials. Through time the collections have become more focussed on Swindon and the surrounding areas and we hold objects dating from prehistory to the present showing the development of the area and the people who lived in it.
In 1941 the art collection was established by an impressive donation of 21 works by a local businessman HJP Bomford. This collection has been built on and today Swindon Museum and Art Gallery owns a modern art collection of outstanding quality and importance. In addition we also hold an excellent collection of studio ceramics and a number of local artworks.

Swindon Museum and Art Gallery Trust
The Trust is managing the Swindon Museum and Art Gallery project which has two key aims: to create a fitting home for Swindon’s museum and art collections, including the nationally significant collection of British 20th Century Modern Art, and use its location to boost regeneration of the economy and attractiveness of the town centre.’
Creative Museums
Creative Museums is a research and development programme. Using a process called Scratch, developed by Battersea Arts Centre, their aim is to build lively programmes which enrich the experience for visitors, directly and creatively involve their audiences, tackle challenges and generate new opportunities
www.bac.org.uk/creativemuseums



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