Reimagining Manchester Art Gallery

Join us to discuss ideas and questions that will shape how we rearrange the gallery

The art currently on display in the Victorian building on Mosley Street has mostly stayed the same since 2002, so we have been thinking about how these galleries are used now and how they could be used in the future. We are still working it out, so to shape our ideas we are bringing together staff, artists, key partners and the public to share ideas and learn together along the way.

The collection is owned by the people of Manchester and looked after by gallery staff for the city council. It is vast and made up of around 46,000 objects, containing many stories, histories and ideas to be explored. Despite this the collection contains many stories that remain hidden, so we are moving away from chronological displays towards a thematic display that combines art from different times together.

We feel it’s important that the new displays are relevant in the 21st century and connect to the people of Manchester and beyond, so they will take being human and our lived experience today as their starting point. We thought we would share our thinking at this stage, so far we have identified a few key things that connect to us all:

What Is Manchester Art Gallery?
Climate Emergency
Joy and love

Contribute to the discussion on instagram, twitter or through our contact form

Get involved : People’s Choice

Many of the works on display have traditionally been chosen by our curators. We have also worked with schools, community groups and artists to select items to display from the vast collection of objects we have in store.


This new space is a great opportunity for the people of Manchester. It is not just about the history of the institution, the gallery and its collections, but of how it is used and by whom. That’s where you come in. This is not just an art gallery; this is a public art gallery. The people of Manchester own its works. This is your collection.

We’d like to invite you to nominate an art work to display as part of the new re-displays. We want to know what art works  mean something to you. Is there an art work  that has a personal meaning? What kind of response do you have to it? Maybe there is something that hasn’t been on display for a while that you miss and would like to see back on show. Tell us why!

You can let us know by filling out the form below, or look through our collection for inspiration.

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