Worthing Museum and Art Gallery

Entrance Worthing Museum and Art Gallery
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Opened in 1908 this fine Edwardian building houses West Sussex's largest museum. Permanent displays include archaelogy, one of the UK's largest costume collections, local history and decorative art. Over ten temporary exhibitions a year from contemporary art to themed displays. Varied events programme including Local History Day, Family Art Day's and Fashion and Textile events as well as demonstrations and workshops for adults and children.

Venue Type:

Museum, Gallery

Opening hours

Tues-Sat 10.00-17.00

Closed Sundays, Mondays and some Bank Holidays

Admission charges

Admission free

Getting there

A 7 minute walk South of Worthing station towards the seafront, located in the heart of Worthing Town.

The museum's collections include local archaelogy from Worthing and the surrounding area; costume and textiles dating from 1600; juvenilia; work by members of the Camden Town Group; work by English water-colourists; typographical collection of paintings, prints and drawings; Colin Mear's bequest of chidrens books; material relating to the history of Worthing

Collection details

Archaeology, Archives, Coins and Medals, Costume and Textiles, Decorative and Applied Art, Fine Art, Land Transport, Literature, Natural Sciences, Social History, Toys and Hobbies

Key artists and exhibits

  • Berenger Benger; John Randall Bratby; Elizabeth Chettle; Myles Birket Foster; Charles Ginner; Keith Henderson; William Holman Hunt; Barnard Meninsky; Charles Alfred Morris; Lucien Pissarro; Ernest Procter; Sir Stanley Spencer
Exhibition details are listed below, you may need to scroll down to see them all.
One of the dresses for Worthing Museum's costume trail

WMA: Costume Trail

  • 27 April 2017 — 31 May 2018 *on now

An 18 month costume trail is on display to the public across Worthing. The trail consists of a portable and changing series of displays using Worthing Museum and Art Gallery's (WMA) costume collection, and is hosted in showcases by local businesses. The trail of costumes will show how fashion can chart the history of Worthing, creating a visual reminder of the people who lived during various periods.

WMA’s costume collection features over 30,000 pieces, predominantly from 1740 to the present day, including their earliest item which is a 1612 black-work jacket. An untapped resource, the collection is one the largest in the UK.

Working with local groups of children WMA will host research workshops to link the costumes with points of local history and showcase that research alongside the costumes throughout Worthing

Members of the public can able to follow the trail using a trail-map. This features questions for each costume, and may be exchanged for cinema tickets when each site has been visited and the questions answered correctly. Each map will also invite people to record their own memories relating to the costumes to create new heritage.

The showcases will become cabinets of curiosity once the trail has ended to create a lasting legacy for the museum.

The Costume Trail is as much about people as the items themselves. Throughout the creation of the trail, WMA has been assisted by volunteers, the businesses in which the cases are housed and local groups, making this a fully community led project.

Two of the groups who have been involved since the beginning of the trail’s creation are Worthing-based Creative Waves and Men in Sheds. Arts group Creative Waves have run a series of workshops with local children and young people, to produce the attention-grabbing artwork you see inside the showcases, reflecting the decades in which the selected costumes were made and worn. Worthing-based charity Men in Sheds, who support the health and wellbeing of men through their unique offering of shed making and mending, have created the wardrobe styled doors for a number of the cases on display.

Worthing Museum and Art Gallery has received financial support from the Heritage Lottery Fund who have invested £76,800 into the costume trail, as well as South East Museum’s Development Fund of £26,800. The combined funding will see the acquisition of 12 state-of-the-art Click Netherfield showcases which will be placed in businesses around town.

Gerry Connolly, Senior Curator at Worthing Museum and Art Gallery says: “The Costume Trail has been a long time in the planning and I am very excited to see it finally come to life. I have been the curator of costume for over 10 years here at Worthing Museum & Art Gallery and know how amazing the collection and our museum is. Join the trail and experience the costume collection out in our community, visit our fantastic museum and most importantly have fun.”

Executive Member for Customer Services, Councillor Dr Heather Mercer says “It is a privilege to open our historical collection to the public by displaying these beautiful costumes throughout Worthing, and bringing these displays to the community. With over 30,000 different costumes we have one of the largest collections in the UK and I’m looking forward to seeing how people engage and interact with the exhibition and the town’s social heritage.”

Suitable for

  • Family friendly
  • Especially for children

Website

http://www.worthingmuseum.co.uk/

Events details are listed below. You may need to scroll down or click on headers to see them all. For events that don't have a specific date see the 'Resources' tab above.
A preview of the Isolation Chamber Vacation at Worthing Museum

Exhibition: Isolation Chamber Vacation

  • 27 April — 2 September 2017 *on now

Isolation Chamber Vacation explores cultural representations of solitude through art and film at Worthing Museum & Art Gallery

A newly opened exhibition at Worthing Museum & Art Gallery explores various artists’ responses to aloneness, examining different cultural representations of solitude through art and a series of films and talks until Saturday September 2.

Isolation Chamber Vacation explores the horror-filled connotations of madness and perversity associated with isolation on the one hand and the use of solitude as a tool for creative genius on the other. Included are works by artists Kirsty Buchanan, Juno Calypso, Hannah Ford, Nicola Frimpong, Susie Hamilton, Katerina Jebb, Cathy Lomax and Alli Sharma. The work of these artists in various stages of their careers will be shown alongside contextualising objects and ephemera from the curator’s research into the theme.

Emma Walder, WMA Curator of Art & Exhibitions, says: "This is a really special exhibition because it showcases eight contemporary London and Paris based artists who are new to Worthing Museum Art Gallery. The subject of isolation is explored on so many different levels which makes it so intriguing. The guest curator Sarah Kathryn Cleaver and I also decided to include a few pieces from the museum's own collections to demonstrate the different practices devoted to, and resulting from, solitude. There are talks and film screenings to accompany the exhibition which adds another exciting layer of texture.”

The museum will be hosting four unique events directly linked with the themes of the exhibition; each event will include a talk by the artists to explore these themes, followed by a related film screening in the Connaught Studio. The films include The Elephant Man (22 May), The Man Who Fell To Earth (26 June), Under The Skin (24 July) and The Virgin Suicides (21 August). Admission to a talk and film together costs £15 which includes a glass of wine, whereas the exhibition itself is free.

For further information and booking enquiries visit worthingmuseum.co.uk or call 01903 221 448.

Website

http://www.worthingmuseum.co.uk/

Getting there

A 7 minute walk South of Worthing station towards the seafront, located in the heart of Worthing Town.

Worthing Museum and Art Gallery
Chapel Road
Worthing
West Sussex
BN11 1HP
England

Website

www.worthingmuseum.co.uk

E-mail

general enquiries

museum@adur-worthing.gov.uk

curator of historic collections

gerry.connolly@adur-worthing.gov.uk

art and exhibitions

emma.walder@adur-worthing.gov.uk

art and exhibitions

hamish.macgillivray@adur-worthing.gov.uk

operations officer

elisabeth.long@adur-worthing.gov.uk

Telephone

general office

01903 221448

museum shop

01903 221448

Saturdays

01903 221448

Fax

01903 236 277

All information is drawn from or provided by the venues themselves and every effort is made to ensure it is correct. Please remember to double check opening hours with the venue concerned before making a special visit.
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