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“A Peaceful Cultural Oasis in the Heart of Manchester”

Manchester Art Gallery
Ranked #9 of 188 things to do in Manchester
Certificate of Excellence
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Attraction details
Fee: No
Recommended length of visit: 1-2 hours
Owner description: From our historical collections to international contemporary art, we aim to bring fresh perspectives, encourage conversation and spark debate. Explore our collections of fine art, spanning six centuries and including many major modern and contemporary pieces. We are famous for 19th century British paintings, particularly our outstanding collection of Pre-Raphaelite works. Our decorative arts collections showcase the artistry, tastes and techniques of every era and culture, from ancient civilizations to today’s designer makers. Our collections of ceramics, silver, glass, furniture and costume are especially fine. We constantly renew and update our collections displays so you should discover something new every time you visit. And, we're free to visit!
Reviewed 12 August 2014

On a very rainy summer day the gallery on Mosley Street had a mixture of visitors. Some came in out of the heavy August rain, others were tourists and some were local art lovers and students. One art student sat sketching her favourite portraits. The staff were welcoming and helpful, and the smell of food from the cafe was enticing. The food and service there is usually first rate, and on this occasion the big slice of Bakewell Tart I had with my coffee was mouthwatering and delicious. It's great to be in such a relaxing atmosphere where people move around in a quietly chatty contemplative mood.

I'm a fan of the artwork of the Pre-Raphaelite Brotherhood and the collection there it worth seeing, as are all the collections in the Gallery. I must say that the work by Banksy stuck out like a sore thumb and looked out of place where it was hanging, nevertheless, it is always good to see a wide selection of artwork from all genres and eras, and his little painting is a good addition to the gallery.

The gallery opened in 1824 and today occupies three buildings, one of which is a Grade 1 listed building designed by Sir Charles Barry and another is a tastefully added although clashing style of architecture which is all green tinted glass and metal. What I love about the Gallery is its versatility. There is something for everyone since apart from the permanent collections there are also temporary installations and events including a fantastic children's interactive art and craft session which I saw being enjoyed by a group of multi-cultural children while I was there.

The shop prices are value for money. It has a good selection of gifts, but it might be a little awkward for a wheelchair user to traverse especailly when there are customers browsing. However, disabled access is very good on the whole throughout the building. A vertigo sufferer may find the glass annexe of the building a little disconcerting but there is plenty to see in the rest of the building if they want to skip that part out, and the cafe, toilets and shop are all on the ground floor in the Grade 1 listed part of the Gallery which is good.

Staff were polite and well informed and the venue was very clean. It is a delight to be there, and is a great solo or family attraction.

Trams stop nearby and Mosley Street is within walking distance to most busses which is also a bonus.

1  Thank Rosetta C
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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1,057 - 1,061 of 1,611 reviews

Reviewed 12 August 2014

This is where I want to get married! I love the stateliness of the building, the huge gilt frames, beautiful dark-painted rooms and giant lavish paintings. My favourite is the drowned Ophelia, which is a defintae must--see.

Easy to lose yourself wandering round for a few hours, go and have a peer.

1  Thank ClareyPin
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 11 August 2014

Loved this gallery, especially the contemporary art.

Great location, lovely building in great city. Will visit again.

Thank karen h
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 11 August 2014

This is a jewel in Manchester's crown.
Bright and airy, a good cafe, clean toilets.
The exhibition area's are changed quite frequently, so I find there's always something new for me to ponder at.
Free entry, donations can be given.
Definitely worth a visit if you're in Manchester.

1  Thank Phil B
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 10 August 2014

I try and pop into the Art Museum everytime I visit Manchester. I like the general feel of the museum. The staff are very friendly and smile a lot. The galeries are well organised and there is some additions every time I go. The temporary exhibitions are changed regularly.My favourites are the two Caneletto's. I really like his work.
The Stubbs with the cheetah is a fine painting. The fashion display was very interesting .

The cafe is good but the restaurant is even better.I had smoked haddock fishcakes. Very nice.
I could recommend a few hours here to anyone who has not been before. The volunteer led tours are well worth the time and it is interesting ti hear someone elses view on a painting.

Thank Richard E
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC

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