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“completely ignored”

York St Mary's Contemporary Art Space
Ranked #126 of 206 things to do in York
Attraction details
York, United Kingdom
Level 6 Contributor
91 reviews
55 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 431 helpful votes
“completely ignored”
Reviewed 1 November 2013

What a shame, this is an underused space in a wonderful location. We have visited this attraction for a number of its displays which are always thought provoking and interesting, even if there are always unused areas, these give the opportunity to admire the building itself. Unfortunately only once have any of the staff taken the slightest interest in us as visitors. Our latest visit being typical, no welcome, no information or guidance, the three visible staff were huddled at one end chatting and laughing. They glanced over then completely ignored us. We wondered round the installations, not all to our taste but interesting pieces none the less until a small group of young people entered, obviously known to the staff who rushed over to them and drew them into their socialising. We left as the noise level grew.
We couldn't help but feel that perhaps the York museums trust needs to train and supervise their staff at this attraction more effectively, their staff at the other attractions run by them are excellent,but they are let down here Sadly.
Additionally I would have liked to see a little more information about the exhibits and indeed the building itself.
Regretfully I have to give this the lowest rating I have given on any review to date.

Visited October 2013
2 Thank thomas g
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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12 reviews from our community

Visitor rating
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English first
london county hall
Level 6 Contributor
341 reviews
190 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 124 helpful votes
“A disappointing art gallery”
Reviewed 21 October 2013

Very disappointed by this alleged current replacement for York art gallery.
Staff just stood there while you try and find your way round Bruce Nauman's work actually there isn't much to see.
Fair enough the church is magnificent but that wasn't enough to keep us interested.

Visited October 2013
1 Thank Beatrice-TA
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
York, United Kingdom
Level 5 Contributor
95 reviews
28 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 127 helpful votes
“Should have been more interesting”
Reviewed 25 August 2013

This appears to be York Art Gallery's only contemporary art space. The venue itself, in Coppergate, is a deconsecrated church and itself has some beautiful stained glass and clear windows but it is small and, presumably limited in what it can display. The current exhibition is of Bruce Nauman's work and the literature which accompanies it struggles to make a connection between his neon works and the stained glass windows and the central sculpture with the trinity. The staff seemed surprised to see anybody visiting and, indeed, there were only about 4/5 people there at the time. York, which is resplendent with history, seems to lack any affinity with modern art and this location might be better used as a "taster" for contemporary art on a wider scale in this otherwise attractive city.

Visited August 2013
1 Thank RosalindLondon
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
York, United Kingdom
Level 2 Contributor
1 review
“History + Art”
Reviewed 5 April 2013

Accessibility: Open to the Public (March – November) Entry Fee: Free

St Mary's is a substantial pre-Conquest parish church with breathtaking octagonal tower and spire; now the tallest spire in York at 47 meters tall. The church is run by the York Museum Trust as a contemporary art gallery with free entry (although donations are gratefully received) and open from 10am to 5pm. York St Mary's Contemporary Art Space is the city's only publicly funded contemporary art gallery. St Mary's typically only has one exhibition a year, but this year the site will host three exhibitions. Currently, St Mary's is hosting the winners for the Aesthetica Art Prize which comprises a variety of pieces including various films, photos and interactive sculptures.

If contemporary art is not your thing, it is also a magnificent medieval church. St Mary's stands in a truncated churchyard on the North East side of Castlegate. Although, the church was substantially rebuilt in the 15th century, much of the earlier fabric of the building remains intact. Evidence for the pre-Conquest occupation of the site can be found in the East wall of the Nave, the lower half of, which is predominatly made up of robbed out Roman material. In addition, a mutilated dedication stone was discovered in a buttress of the East wall in 1870, possibly dating from the 10th or 11th century. If the reader wishes to see the dedication stone it is currently on display in the Yorkshire Museum's Capitol of the North Exhibition, as such stones are exceptionally rare for this period.

Visited April 2013
Thank T J
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC

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