Posts Tagged ‘Manchester Art Gallery’

NEWS: Alistair Hudson appointed as Director for Manchester Art Gallery and The University of Manchester’s Whitworth

Tuesday, October 17th, 2017

The University of Manchester and Manchester City Council have today announced that Alistair Hudson, currently Director of the Middlesbrough Institute of Modern Art (mima), will be the new Director of Manchester Art Gallery and the Whitworth.

Alistair will take up his role in the New Year. He succeeds Maria Balshaw at the Whitworth and Manchester Art Gallery following her appointment as Director of Tate earlier this year.

He brings with him a wealth of experience at the forefront of the culture sector and a strong record of championing art as a tool for social change and education. During the last three years as Director at mima, he set out the institution’s vision as a ‘Useful Museum’, successfully engaging its local communities and responding to the town’s industrial heritage, as well as placing it amongst the most prestigious galleries in the UK.

Alistair began his career at the Anthony d’Offay Gallery, London (1994-2000), before joining The Government Art Collection (2000-04) where, as Projects Curator, he devised a public art strategy for the new Home Office building with Liam Gillick.

As Deputy Director of Grizedale Arts (2004-14) in the Lake District, he helped the institution gain critical acclaim for its radical approaches to working with artists and communities, based on the idea that art should be useful and not just an object of contemplation.

Outside of these roles he is also Chair of Culture Forum North, an open network of partnerships between higher education and the cultural sector across the North, and co-director of the Asociación de Arte Útil with Tania Bruguera. He was a 2015 jury member for the Turner Prize.

Alistair said: “I am completely thrilled to be taking up this post in Manchester. The city’s cultural scene is one of the most dynamic and diverse in the country and Manchester Art Gallery and the Whitworth are at the heart of this. Maria Balshaw and her teams have established both institutions at the forefront of the democratisation of art, working for all of society. I look forward to driving this mission forward and working across the region in projects that have real impact in people’s lives.”

COMMENT: Inquiry – Hard Times for the UK’s Regional Museums

Monday, November 23rd, 2015

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In an article originally published in Apollo magazine’s September issue, Jake Wakefield examined the numerous issues facing our regional galleries and museums.  As an organisation supporting and championing the interests of museums and galleries across the North West region, we at the NWFed were interested to read what Jack had to say on the key issues he felt regional museums and galleries are facing in the current economic climate.

Highlighting the importance of our regional collections as the first major creative influence to numerous local school children, families and other community members which has included people such as L.S.Lowry, whose artistic love for D.G Rossetti’s portraits he encountered in Manchester Art Gallery perhaps influenced his decision to become an artist. This importance our regional collections play within their local and wider communities is something not reflected in the cuts to their core funding which continues at a rapid pace.

Regional museums and galleries are consistently being asked to do more to help sustain their own sources of income – improve their cafes and shops, raise money by licencing their collections, renting out their spaces, applying for private grants, encouraging donations – but all of these actions together only make up a small percentage of the income they need to sustain their function within the local community.

National collections in London seem to have greater access to private funding, so how do we draw funders away from London and into our regional museums and galleries? As Jack states when closing his article, “small acts of philanthropy will make a much bigger difference outside London”; but how do we make this happen?

We welcome your comments and thoughts on this issue below.

To read the full article, Click Here