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Liverpool University’s Victoria Gallery & Museum reopens 15th June with three new exhibitions

The University’s Victoria Gallery & Museum reopens to the public on Tuesday 15th June with three new exhibitions

The  University’s Victoria Gallery & Museum (VG&M)  will reopen to the public on Tuesday 15th June with three new exhibitions featuring artwork from the University’s rich and varied art collection including the gallery’s most famous painting, J.M.W. Turner’s The Eruption of the Soufrière Mountains in the Island of St, 30 April 1812.

The VG&M closed to the public in March 2020 due to the pandemic but during the past year the VG&M team worked hard to develop online exhibitions and activities for virtual visitors whilst preparing new physical exhibitions ahead of reopening to the public.

Nicola Euston, Head of Museums & Galleries, said: “We are delighted to be able to welcome visitors back to the VG&M. This year has been a huge challenge, not only for us at the VG&M, but for the whole sector, and I am incredibly proud of our team and the work that they have done to continue to support and entertain our audiences online. We can’t wait to welcome visitors back into the building on 15th June and feel the sense of community and excitement that we have all missed.”


1.Nature v Humans  (15 June to 25 September 2021)

Nature v Humans features artworks which illustrate the ever-present tensions between the natural world and the human race.  Inspired by the Coronavirus pandemic and by the current worldwide focus on environmental issues, this exhibition features  J.M.W. Turner’s magnificent The Eruption of the Soufrière Mountains in the Island of St Vincent, 30 April 1812

The exhibition also contains a work by Merseybeat artist and poet Adrian Henri, an imposing, recently-acquired piece by Peter Lanyon and an original sculpted response to the Coronavirus pandemic borrowed from Lancashire-based, award-winning ceramicist Helen Birnbaum. Other artists include Cornelia Parker and Sir Frank Bowling.

More information about the exhibition can be found here: Nature v Humans virtual preview, Gallery 6, Victoria Gallery & Museum.

Image: The Eruption of the Soufriere Mountains in the Island of St Vincent, 30 April 1812 by J.M.W. Turner (painting dated 1815)

2.A New Beauty: Romanticism in Art 1880 – 1920 (15 June 2021 – ongoing)

A New Beauty: Romanticism in Art 1880 – 1920 explores the evolving ways in which physical attractiveness was depicted from the late 1800s.  It features a beautiful drawing by late Pre-Raphaelite artist Edward Coley Burne-Jones, exquisite studies by Glasgow School luminaries Frances MacDonald MacNair and her husband J. Herbert MacNair, complemented by characterful etchings by James Hamilton Hay, a bronze by Liverpool sculptor C.J. Allen and a hand-carved feature fireplace designed by early female students at the University of Liverpool.

It also contains a cheeky bronze statue called The Sluggard by Sir Frederic Leighton, which has become a firm favourite after being featured in the Liverpool Echo via the Twitter page @MuseumBums

Information about the exhibition can be found here: A New Beauty virtual preview, Gallery 2, Victoria Gallery & Museum

3.The Art of Ruin  (15 June – ongoing)

On the first floor Balcony Wall is a display of Italian landscapes which celebrate the ruinous and crumbling – a taste that emerged in Rome in the mid-1600s. Generally known as Capriccio, these playful paintings juxtapose ruined structures with often imaginary landscapes to give viewers a glimpse into a fantastical realm.

Image below: Classical Ruins, c.1750 by Follower of Giovanni Paola Panini

Further information about the display can be found here: The Art of Ruin virtual preview, Balcony Wall, first floor of the Victoria Gallery & Museum

Opening Times

The VG&M opens on Tuesday 15 June and will be open Tuesday – Saturday, 10am – 5pm. Visitors need to book a free timed entry slot in advance in order to maintain social distancing and safely manage numbers.

#MyVGM Instagram competition

To celebrate the reopening, the VG&M is running an Instagram photo competition. To enter, visitors need to take as many photos as you like during their visit to the VG&M and share them on Instagram using the hashtag #MyVGM and tag @victoriagallery.  Further details on the competition can be found here