Bristol Museum and Art Gallery
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.
Tuesday - Sunday: 10am - 5pm
Plus Mondays during Bristol school holidays and Bank Holiday Mondays: 10am - 5pm
No admission fee - donations welcome
- National Art Pass
For a reminder of your visit, the Museum shop contains award-winning merchandise, including a beautiful guide to the art collection, reproduction prints from the art gallery 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 shop.bristolmuseums.org.uk
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.
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
Empire Through the Lens
- 30 September 2017 — 31 August 2018 *on now
Bristol Archives holds an extraordinary collection of photographs and films showing both public and private aspects of life in the British Empire and Commonwealth.
From about 500,000 images, we asked 27 people to each choose one piece. The selectors include development workers, artists, photographers, historians and relatives of the photographers.
They each bring a different perspective to the collection, and represent a broad range of personal knowledge, aesthetic appreciation and academic thought on the people and countries shown in the images, the legacy of Empire and the post-colonial experience.
Most of the collection dates from the 1880s to the 1960s and is just a snippet of the many thousands of images that are being catalogued and digitised.
Please note that the exhibition may contain some challenging images.
This exhibition is a display of the collection held by Bristol Archives and will take place at Bristol Museum & Art Gallery.
The ‘Exploring Empire’ cataloguing project was funded by the National Cataloguing Grants Programme for Archives.
No admission fee – donations welcome.
Grayson Perry: The Vanity of Small Differences
- 31 March — 24 June 2018 *on now
Six large tapestries exploring the British fascination with taste and class by one of the UK’s best-known and best-loved artists – Grayson Perry.
Inspired by Hogarth’s morality tale, A Rake’s Progress, Perry’s tapestries follow the socially-mobile life of fictional character Tim Rakewell from infancy to untimely death.
Made in parallel with a Channel 4 documentary series, All in the Best Possible Taste, they are crammed with acutely-observed detail and invite us all to consider our own attitudes to class and our positions in society.
The exhibition also includes a number of works from our own collections, including historical ceramics, and the original Rake’s Progress print series by William Hogarth and David Hockney.
A specially designed guide will take you on a journey around the museum in search of historic motifs found in the tapestries, and you can hear perspectives from experts in very different fields through newly created audio.
Under 16s free
Children under 12 must be accompanied by an adult.
Bristol Museum and Art Gallery
City of Bristol
0117 922 3571