The Permanent Displays at Wolverhampton Art Gallery
Wolverhampton Art Gallery cares for an art collection that spans over 300 years of art, with many important works. Among them Marianne Stokes’ Madonna and Child, used by the Royal Mail as a postage stamp in 2005, and Peace and Plenty Binding Arrows of War (1614) by Flemish Baroque painter Abraham Janssens – the only painting by the artist in a British public collection.
The 20th Century British Art Collection reflects important trends in British painting and sculpture from the first half of the twentieth century, as well as more recent developments, while our growing 21st Century Art Collection shows that art can be a powerful voice in today’s society, addressing issues of war, race, gender, civil liberties and national identity.
Alongside the regularly changing temporary exhibitions, the Gallery has permanent displays that feature works from the collections dedicated to key periods in history:
Pop Art Gallery: Wolverhampton holds one of the most important collections of Pop Art from the 1960s-1970s in the UK, with changing exhibitions focussing on key themes and leading artists. All the major British and American figures associated with the movement are represented, including Andy Warhol, David Hockney, Roy Lichtenstein, Eduardo Paolozzi, Peter Blake, RB Kitaj, Mel Ramos, Joe Tilson, Richard Hamilton, Allen Jones, James Rosenquist and Jim Dine.
Georgian Gallery: The Age Of Enlightenment is explored in the Georgian Gallery. A time of great social and scientific change, portraits and landscapes by 18th century artists such as Joseph Wright of Derby, Thomas Gainsborough, and Henry Fuseli document these exciting times.
Victorian Gallery: A glimpse into life during the reign of Queen Victoria with artists such as Edward Landseer, Francis Danby and David Cox, plus The Cranbrook Colony. A period of national pride, colonial expansion, huge wealth and terrible poverty is revealed.
Sensing Sculpture: The award-winning Sensing Sculpture exhibition encourages visitors to touch, smell and listen to the works on display. Abstract works, found objects and textile art sit alongside traditional bronzes and objects from nature, each one chosen for its sensory properties. Braille interpretation is provided throughout the gallery, and all visitors are encouraged to learn some Braille during their visit using a giant wall panel.
Traced: Tracing the success of art and design in Wolverhampton from 1850-1970, this display brings together works by both teachers and students, and shows how Wolverhampton School of Art established a national reputation for sculpture.
Northern Ireland Collection: A landmark collection for an English gallery, examining Northern Ireland’s past, present and future, with challenging contributions from Willie Doherty, Jock McFadyen, Rita Duffy and John Keane that explore ‘The Troubles’ and beyond. Changing displays highlight key themes and figures.
Please note that only a small percentage of our holdings are on display at any one time, so if you are travelling to see a specific work, or that by a specific artist, please Contact us well in advance to ensure it is on display or accessible.
For more information on the works and items held by the Art Gallery, visit the Collections section of this website which includes overviews of the main collections alongside a searchable online database of item level collection information.