Bristol Museum and Art Gallery

Bristol Museum and Art Gallery
Queen's Road
Bristol
City of Bristol
BS8 1RL
England

Website

www.bristol.gov.uk/museums

E-mail

General enquiries

general.museum@bristol.gov.uk

Telephone

0117 922 3571

Fax

0117 922 2047

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.
Bristol Museum at Night
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Bristol’s premier museum and art gallery houses important collections of minerals and fossils, natural history, eastern art, world wildlife, Egyptology, archaeology and fine and applied art.

Venue Type:

Museum, Gallery

Opening hours

Open Monday -Friday, 10am-5pm
Weekends 10am-6pm

Admission charges

Admission free

Additional info

For a reminder of your visit, the Museum shop contains award-winning merchandise, including reproduction prints from the Art Gallery's collections, greetings cards, a wide range of books for all ages and interests, unusual gifts and Bristol-branded gifts to name just a few. To view the stock and for more information, visit the Museum Shop web page.

The Geology, Applied Art and Eastern Art collections at Bristol's City Museum & Art Gallery are Designated Collections of national importance.

Among the Designated applied art collections with a strong Bristol connection are important collections of delftware and glass. Also designated are Bristol's geology collections and fine and applied arts from the Far East, including the celebrated Schiller Collection.

Part of Bristol Museums’ Designated Collections related to Bristol’s role as a manufacturing city and major seaport is on display here. Other parts of these collections can be seen at Georgian House, Red Lodge, and Blaise Castle House Museum. Please contact Bristol Museums for more information if you wish to see a specific item.

At Bristol's City Museum & Art Gallery there is a choice of galleries situated upstairs full of artworks: Old Masters, French School, British Collection, Modern Art and the Bristol School.

Alongside in the adjoining galleries, the decorative arts collections can be found: Eastern Art, Ceramics, Silverware and Glassware. On the lower floors - a fine collection of glittering minerals, ancient fossils and a large archaeology gallery showing the South West's geographic formation. Close by is the World Wildlife Gallery containing many examples of endangered or extinct animals, including the much-loved Alfred the Gorilla.

The popular Egyptology gallery contains real mummies besides other items and situated next door is the hugely impressive wall decoration made over 3,000 years ago - the Assyrian Reliefs. A natural history gallery contains examples of aquatic habitats in the south west of England and an interactive map of local wildlife sites and a freshwater aquarium containing fish typical of the region. Throughout the Museum and Art Gallery material from other countries can be seen, including pottery and clothing.

Collection details

Science and Technology, Religion, Photography, Natural Sciences, Fine Art, Decorative and Applied Art, Costume and Textiles, Coins and Medals, Aviation, Archaeology

Key artists and exhibits

  • Old Masters, French School, British Collection, Modern Art and the Bristol School
  • Eastern Art, Ceramics, Silverware and Glassware
  • Archaelogy / fossils
  • Egyptology / mummies
  • Assyrian Reliefs
  • Pottery and clothing
  • Natural history
  • Endangered or extinct animals, including the much-loved Alfred the Gorilla
  • Designated Collection
Exhibition details are listed below, you may need to scroll down to see them all.
Quarter sized reproduction of Thomas Marsh’s original tracing of the mosaic

Return from the Underworld: The Orpheus Mosaic from Newton St Loe

  • 3 August 2013 — 21 April 2014 *on now

Discover the Orpheus Mosaic from Newton St Loe, one of the museum's largest Roman objects. This is only the second time it has been on public show in more than 150 years.

The Orpheus mosaic was discovered in a Roman Villa at Newton St. Loe during the construction of the Bristol to Bath section of Brunel’s Great Western Railway in 1837. Several mosaic floors were found including this one, which illustrates the story of Orpheus, a mythical poet and musician, charming a circle of wild animals.

Roman mosaic floor designs which show Orpheus within a circle of animals are only found in Britain. The floor from Newton St. Loe is one of only nine ever to have been identified and may be the earliest, dating to between the late AD 200s and early AD 300s. The sense of movement achieved in the animals and the elaborate colouring of the figure of Orpheus is unparalleled.

The mosaic will be located in the Balcony Gallery on the first floor.

Suitable for

  • Family friendly

Website

http://www.bristol.gov.uk/page/leisure-and-culture/return-underworld-orpheus-mosaic-newton-st-loe

The Romans and Bristol Exhibition

  • 31 March — 31 May 2014 *on now

The exhibition focuses on the activities of antiquarian collectors, excavators and local residents who have all contributed towards making Bristol’s Roman collection what it is today. Many of the objects in the exhibition have never been on public display before.

Display Highlights:

The work of individuals such as the discovery of Kings Weston Roman Villa by post-war teenagers: George Boon and John Clevedon Brown.

The work of the Reverend John Skinner, whose excavations in Camerton, Somerset uncovered a wealth of Roman artefacts, including: three coin hoards; fine imported Roman pottery; brooches and other personal and domestic items.

Material from important local sites, including: the Roman town of Abona at Sea Mills; a Roman temple and three Roman villas - give visitors a flavour of the wide range of artefacts in the collection.

The exhibition runs until late spring, please contact venue to confirm exhibition end date.

Website

http://www.bristol.gov.uk/page/leisure-and-culture/romans-and-bristol-exhibition

Image of William Morris

Jeremy Deller - English Magic

  • 12 April — 21 September 2014 *on now

Jeremy Deller represented the UK with ‘English Magic’ at the 2013 Venice Biennale, the world’s most prestigious contemporary art event. Don’t miss this critically acclaimed exhibition in Bristol as it tours the UK for the first time in the Biennale’s history.

‘English Magic’ reflects the Turner Prize winning artist’s interest in the diverse nature of British culture: its people, icons, folklore, history and politics.

Encounter a magical assembly of large-scale murals, drawings, photographs, film, and historical materials. Expect references to workers’ strikes, the Iraq war, tax evasion, Range Rovers and Ziggy Stardust.The exhibition will also include new installations and commissions made in direct response to the museum’s own collections; including paintings of the Bristol Riots of 1831 by William James Muller and a display of taxidermy, handpicked by Deller.

Feel the weight of history in your hands as you hold Palaeolithic flint hand axes based on Deller's mural pieces with a giant rubber stamp!

Younger visitors can explore the magic in our own collections by picking up a free family trail.

Suitable for

  • Any age

Admission

Suggested Donation £2

Website

http://www.bristol.gov.uk/page/leisure-and-culture/jeremy-deller-english-magic-exhibition

Turner: Watercolours from the West

  • 1 May — 6 July 2014

A small, intimate show of eight watercolours by JMW Turner from collections in the west of England.

Turner was just 16 or 17 years old when he painted several of the watercolours in this show, which is a first opportunity to see our new acquisition ‘The Mouth of the Avon, Seen from a Cave below Clifton’.

These detailed early Bristol and Bath scenes show the emergence of interests that can still be seen in his looser, more atmospheric later works.

This exhibition is a Frameworks partnership tour.

Suitable for

  • Any age

Website

http://www.bristol.gov.uk/page/leisure-and-culture/turner-watercolours-west

English Magic Exhibition Tour

  • 10 May 2014 12-1pm

A tour of Jeremy Deller's English Magic exhibition, Led by Emma Gifford-Mead, curator of the British Pavilion at the Venice Biennale 2013.

Suitable for

  • Any age

Admission

No need to book, meet at reception.
Suggested donation £2.

Website

http://www.bristol.gov.uk/page/leisure-and-culture/jeremy-deller-english-magic-exhibition

English Magic exhibition tour

  • 10 May 2014 12-1pm

A tour of Jeremy Deller’s English Magic exhibition, Led by Emma Gifford-Mead, curator of the British Pavilion at the Venice Biennale 2013.

No need to book, meet at reception.

Suitable for

  • Any age

Admission

suggested donation £2

Website

http://www.bristol.gov.uk/page/leisure-and-culture/jeremy-deller-english-magic-exhibition

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.

Let’s Tesselate!

  • 16 April 2014 10am-2pm *on now

Help create a giant mosaic picture based on our Roman Orpheus Mosaic from Newton St Loe and then make a mini mosaic to take home.

Suitable for

  • Family friendly

Admission

Suggested Donation £2

Art And The Avon Gorge Talk

  • 3 May 2014 2-3pm

As a teenager holidaying in Bristol, JMW Turner earned himself the nickname 'Prince of the Rocks' for the hours he spent climbing and painting in the Avon Gorge. Join Professor Sam Smiles as he discusses how the unique geology, landscape and history of the Gorge - and Turner's influence - have inspired further generations of artists. Includes reference to early watercolours by JMW Turner and works by the Bristol School of Artists Professor Sam Smiles, is a Tate Research Fellow, and Associate Professor of Art History and Visual Culture at the University of Exeter.

Suitable for

  • Any age

Admission

Places to this event are limited, please pre-book on 0117 922 3571.
Suggested donation £2

Website

http://www.bristol.gov.uk/page/leisure-and-culture/turner-watercolours-west

In Conversation With Jeremy Deller

  • 3 May 2014 10:30-11:30am

Jeremy Deller will be in conversation with Old Vic Director Tom Morris at the New Room, John Wesley's Chapel as part of the inaugural launch event for a year-long national programme of events, discussions and publications titled Public Art Now produced by Situations in association with the Bristol Festival of Ideas.

Suitable for

  • Any age

Where

John Wesley's The New Room
36 The Horsefair, Broadmead
Bristol
BS1 3JE

Admission

See www.bristolartweekender.co.uk for more details.

Website

http://www.bristolartweekender.co.uk/

Image of a record with the words MagicKowpoodisco

Museums at Night:MAGICKOWPOODISKO

  • 17 May 2014 3-8pm

Many moons ago, on a given day of the year, villagers would gather round their cow in anticipation, applauding and cheering every splat that fell from its rear.

Magick was happening.

The more pats that thudded on the earth, the more fruitful the village's crops would be that year.

The artist and composer Ergo Phizmiz will take visitors on a multimedia family disco adventure into the wild and wonderful medieval magick rituals of England and Europe. With music, masks, projections, massive heads, and puppetry, we will embark on a time-travel-musical-journey into the deliciously absurd, accompanied by lots of dancing to modern pop hits and nostalgic novelties.
inspired by the museum's latest exhibition Jeremy Deller, English Magic and presented by MayFest and Qu Junktions.

Suitable for

  • Family friendly
  • Any age

Tea with Jeremy Deller

  • 11 June 2014 7-8pm

Meet Jeremy Deller and find out more about the ideas behind his English Magic exhibition and how it felt to represent Great Britain at the Venice Biennale 2013.

Suitable for

  • Any age

Admission

Over 18s only.
£10/£7 conc. Includes tea!

Places must be booked in advance via the Museum Shop on 0117 922 3650

Website

http://www.bristol.gov.uk/page/leisure-and-culture/jeremy-deller-english-magic-exhibition

Bowie Night

  • 19 June 2014 7-10pm

Celebrate David Bowie’s music and the links to Jeremy Deller’s work with an evening of performances by The (Greatness Of The Magnificence) Fantasy Orchestra, plus talks, art and more.

Suitable for

  • 18+

Admission

£10/£7 conc. Over 18s only.
Places must be booked in advance via the Museum Shop on 0117 922 3650

Website

http://www.bristol.gov.uk/page/leisure-and-culture/jeremy-deller-english-magic-exhibition

Black and white photograph of men in trenches

Summer Walk: Impacts Of The Great War

  • 16 July 2014 6:30-8:30pm

The walk will look at the evidence of the pre-World War One landscape in Shirehampton and the location of the Shirehampton Remount Depot that was established in August 1914 to help supply horses and mules to the Western Front. We will also look at how attitudes before, during and after the war helped to shape the growth of Avonmouth and Shirehampton in the 20s and 30s to create the place we see today.

Suitable for

  • Any age

Admission

Numbers are limited. The walks are open to all but places must be booked in advance on 0117-9223571 or e-mail at general.museum@bristol.gov.uk.

Website

http://www.bristol.gov.uk/item/event.html?eventid=29665

Holy Cross church Bristol

Summer Walk: Knowle West

  • 13 August 2014 6-8pm

Knowle West's archaeological heritage ranges from prehistoric settlement to multi-period 20th-century housing including the remains of medieval buildings at Inns Court. Once home to an isolation hospital and the grand Odeon cinema, the landscape bears the traces and scars of these vanished buildings and amenities and has magnificent views of the city and green open spaces.

Suitable for

  • Any age

Admission

The walks are open to all but places must be booked in advance on 0117-9223571 or e-mail at general.museum@bristol.gov.uk.

Website

http://www.bristol.gov.uk/item/event.html?eventid=29666

photograph of poppy on war memorial

Summer Walk: Greenbank Cemetery And The First World War

  • 10 September 2014 6:15-8:15pm

The walk will explore Greenbank Cemetery, with particular reference to the graves, monuments and memorials associated with the First World War, including graves of Australian and Canadian soldiers, some of whom were born in Bristol. We will explore changing notions of war memory and memorialisation in the twentieth century, as well as Bristol's part in the Great War.

Suitable for

  • Any age

Admission

The walks are open to all but places must be booked in advance on 0117-9223571 or e-mail at general.museum@bristol.gov.uk.

Website

http://www.bristol.gov.uk/item/event.html?eventid=29667

Melodians Steel Orchestra

  • 20 September 2014 2-3:30pm

The English/Trinidadian steel band who provided the soundtrack to the English Magic film will be performing live to mark the closing of Jeremy Deller’s English Magic.

Suitable for

  • Any age

Admission

suggested donation £2.

Website

http://www.bristol.gov.uk/page/leisure-and-culture/jeremy-deller-english-magic-exhibition

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