Meeting Point2 museums announced

A Window For Shandy Hall © Jonathan Turner

A Window For Shandy Hall © Jonathan Turner

Funded by Arts Council England’s Museum Resilience Fund, Arts&Heritage has announced the ten museums that will be taking part in Meeting Point2.

Selected in collaboration with Museum Development Managers for the North of England, A&H will be working with the museum teams from Yorkshire, the North West and the North East.

Meeting Point2 follows the pilot Meeting Point1 project that saw nine museums in the North East and Yorkshire commission a new contemporary work inspired by their museum and its collections.

The new works included All in a day’s work by artist Catherine Bertola at The Workhouse in Ripon that was inspired by the architecture and history of the museum. All in a Day’s Work was a poignant reminder of what life was like for vagrants that found themselves in the Ripon Workhouse, forced to undertake repetitive and hard labour. The artist’s claustrophobic installations were altered by individuals who volunteered to undertake stone breaking, laundry folding and wood chopping throughout the duration of the exhibition period.

At Darlington’s railway museum Head Of Steam, artist Cath Campbell took inspiration from eighteen-year-old Elizabeth Bidder’s journey to Egypt onboard Robert Stephenson’s yacht ‘Titania’ in 1858 for her work titled Since the middle summer’s spring. The artist’s work included miniature architectural models of the train stations Bidder visited during her epic voyage from Southampton to Alexandria, Egypt.

The final Meeting Point1 commission SPEAR saw artist David Murphy partner with Dales Countryside Museum on an ambitious new work for Lake Semerwater in the Yorkshire Dales National Park. Celebrating one of the museum’s most prized exhibits a Bronze Age spearhead found on the shores of Lake Semerwater in 1937, the commission culminated in the installation of an impressive architectural pontoon glistening with copper and mimicking the spearhead. Floating on the beautiful lake itself this Museums At Night event included fire pit, storytelling and performance.

For Meeting Point2 the Arts&Heritage team will be working closely with museum staff to visit artist’s studios and meet contemporary art curators and organisations to bring both sectors together.

Timandra Nichols, co- director of Arts&Heritage said:

As well as showcasing new pieces of contemporary art by some of the UK’s most exciting artists, Meeting Point2 is also about supporting museums to develop the skills and confidence to work with and commission artists long into the future. The feedback we’ve received from participants in the Meeting Point pilot has shown the programme can make a huge impact and we’re looking forward to working with a new round of museums on Meeting Point2 in 2017.”

The ten museums taking part in Meeting Point2 are:

Brontë Parsonage Museum, Haworth - Once home to the Brontë family, the Brontë Parsonage Museum located in the picturesque village of Haworth in West Yorkshire promotes the Brontës’ literary legacy within contemporary society.

Experience Barnsley Museum & Discovery Centre - Experience Barnsley Museum and Discovery Centre is dedicated to the history and people of the borough.

Gawthorpe Textiles Collection, Lancashire - An independent charity based at Gawthorpe Hall, Padiham, Lancashire, Gawthorpe Textiles Collection was created following the death of its founder, Miss Rachel Kay-Shuttleworth, to care for her collection of textiles.

Chatham’s Library, Manchester - Chetham’s Library was founded in 1653 and is the oldest public library in the English-speaking world.

Norton Priory Museum & Gardens - Built in the 18th century, Norton Priory Museum & Gardens is the most excavated monastic site in Europe and its brand new £4.5m museum tells its 900-year story.

Lion Salt Works, West Cheshire Museums - The Lion Salt Works is a restored historic open-pan salt making site in the village of Marston. The £10.23 million project opened in June 2015 offering a fascinating journey through the life of the country’s last open-pan salt making site.

Prescot Museum, Knowsley - The museum reflects the historical significance of Prescot and the cultural identity of its community.

Portland Basin Museum, Tameside Museums and Galleries Service - Housed within the restored nineteenth century Ashton Canal Warehouse in Ashton-under-Lyne, Portland Basin Museum celebrates the people, events and industries that have shaped the history of Tameside over the past two hundred years.

Preston Park, Stockton - Experience what life was like in 1895 on a walk down the museum’s replica Victorian Street and discover the history of Preston Hall and its treasures in the Galleries.

Hexham Old Gaol - The oldest purpose built prison in England, Hexham Old Gaol provides an insight into crime and punishment in medieval Northumberland.

More information about the first Meeting Point project can be found here.