The Ferens Art Gallery in Hull has announced it will shut its doors for a revamp in time to host the Turner Prize in 2017. The neo-classical building will exhibit the Prize competitors during Hull’s City of Culture year.
The £4.5m facelift will bring it up to scratch in order to exhibit Britain’s biggest annual art award. Work has already begun to move 2,500 artworks into a “special climate controlled storage facility”, the authority said. New lighting, humidity and temperature control systems will be installed for the gallery which will re-open in early 2017.
‘Long-term investment’ Councillor Steven Bayes said the refit would allow the gallery to “host world-class visiting exhibitions”. “The renovation of the Ferens is a key part of getting the city ready for its year in the spotlight,” he added.”At the same time, it is an investment in the gallery’s long-term future that will help to seal its reputation as one of most important cultural attractions in the North. “
Funding for the £4.5m renovation has come from the city council, HM Treasury and Arts Council England.
The Ferens Art Gallery permanent collection of paintings and sculpture spans artistic periods from medieval times to the present day. The collection includes European Old Masters, portraiture, marine paintings, and modern and contemporary British art. Highlights include masterpieces by Frans Hals, Antonio Canaletto, Stanley Spencer, David Hockney, Helen Chadwick and Gillian Wearing.