Plymouth has taken a major step towards securing over £4 million in capital investment from Arts Council England for a world class exhibition space in the new History Centre.
Plymouth City Museum & Art Gallery is among just 16 organisations nationally who have been invited to apply to the second stage of the large Capital Investment programme.
They will be applying for £4,175,000 towards world class spaces for contemporary visual art in the new History Centre, planned to open in 2020. As their bid is already fully developed, they haven’t applied for funding to draw up more detailed plans but will now proceed directly to Stage Two.
The Plymouth History Centre is at the heart of major re-generation plans for the city: the vision is to transform the existing museum and art gallery into a new, unique visitor attraction, housing the collections of the City Museum and Art Gallery, Plymouth and West Devon Record Office, the Local Studies Library, South West Film & Television Archive and South West Image Bank. These collections will become a resource for interpretation and new works by artists.
Within the newly created exhibition spaces will be the biggest single gallery in the south west, unlocking the potential to host national and international exhibitions. The unique integration of contemporary visual arts, museums and heritage will bring new audiences and provide a platform for Plymouth’s own emerging artists.
The History Centre is a Flagship Project for Mayflower 400 in 2020, the 400th Anniversary of the Pilgrims setting sail.
Phil Gibby, area director, South West, Arts Council England, said: ‘I’m really excited about the prospect of a new world class space for contemporary arts in Plymouth and I’m delighted that the City Museum & Art Gallery have been successful in its application.
‘This will be a flagship destination that really puts Plymouth on the map for its outstanding contemporary visual arts offer.
‘Plymouth is a unique and developing city, with exciting plans for the future and culture at the heart of its ambitious plans for growth. This project has the potential to be a focal point for contemporary visual art in the south west, and give many more people the opportunity to enjoy great arts experiences.’
(from a press release)