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“Small, free, fascinating and interactive.”

Manchester Art Gallery
Ranked #17 of 199 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 April 6, 2012

A variety of art work, from paintings to large sculpture. Some of Lowry's work is exhibited here. Housed in a lovely old building. Easy flow from gallery to gallery with good signposting. Excellent interactive areas for children, with opportunities to actually produce and display some art yourself. Close to central Manchester. Free admission. Toilets clean. Great cafe with reasonable prices.

Thank jog888
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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"pre raphaelite"
in 42 reviews
"grayson perry"
in 22 reviews
"wonderful collection"
in 17 reviews
"on display"
in 68 reviews
"worth a visit"
in 89 reviews
"changing exhibitions"
in 23 reviews
"special exhibition"
in 17 reviews
"lovely cafe"
in 22 reviews
"couple of hours"
in 55 reviews
"free entry"
in 45 reviews
"lovely building"
in 26 reviews
"few hours"
in 39 reviews
"the ground floor"
in 25 reviews
"city centre"
in 38 reviews
"rainy day"
in 20 reviews
"great place to visit"
in 18 reviews
"vogue"
in 52 reviews
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1,532 - 1,536 of 1,777 reviews

Reviewed April 2, 2012

Myself and my wife spent a good 2-3 hours looking round and interacting with the art. I'm no art-buff, but this is one of the best galleries I've visited. It would have been pretty good even for our 2 very young children as there was a fun hands on part of the gallery that we enjoyed as adults! Would recommend a visit.

1  Thank jonboy999
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed March 22, 2012

The gallery has a wonderful collection of interesting art covering many periods and movements. It is very well presented and is worthy of repeated visits.

Thank Heraldthewake
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed March 22, 2012

This is one of my favourite places in Manchester.The building alone warrants a visit. A mixture of old and modern architecture successfully fused together, grand old stone pillars and modern glass elevators....it works so well.
As you enter there is a small gallery featuring all things Mancunian...a great Lowry of Piccadilly Gardens, album covers of the Smiths, stills of A Taste of Honey Sheila Delaneys depiction of Salford life in the 60s and, references to Corrie and Cosgrove Hall the birth place of Andy Pandy and Chorlton and the Wheelies amongst an Aladdins Cave of other gems.
There is also a visiting exhibition space for work usually of a multi media type nature, this is always worth a look and often has a local connection.
There is also a cafe bar and a restaurant on this floor both with high ceilings, it is pleasant space; modern, light and airy. I spent one of the most memorable Mothers days with my Mum and a close friend mooching around the galleries and having lunch here . The food in the self serve restaurant is very good and well presented but can be rather expensive if you are on a tight budget.
Also on the ground floor is the art gallery shop where you can buy postcards or cards of your favourite paintings or works of art. There is a selection of books, some jewellery and other standard museum shop type goods.
I like to stand in the space that connects the new to the old building where the glass and chrome elevators transport you to the various levels and galleries.
The paintings, well there are so many to marvel at.........I have my favourites though...........Lowrys factory scenes and Valettes smoggy Mancunian street and canal scenes. I love Mervyn Peakes The GLass Blowers, Arthur Hughes tragic Orphelia and it's beautiful golden, ornate frame. Rosettis the Bower Meadow, Ford Madox Brown's amazing ' Work' , JW Waterhouse Hylas and The water Nymphs but my favourite painting by a long stretch has to be Sappho. A huge dark oil painting, a picture of profound despair and unrequited love, an image of sheer sadness.....check out her eyes. In some morbid way she always makes me feel better,I mean no matter how bad I feel I know I will never feel this bad!
There is always a big visiting exhibition on and over the years I have been treated and thrilled. Usually it is free, occasionally it is not. On principle I won't attend the latter.
Finally it's a top place for the kids. There is a great interactive area with a plethora of electronic games, dressing up , scary stories based on paintings and general fun and frolics to be had.
It's a great family treat and a lovely way to spend a grey, rainy Mancunian afternoon and costs nothing.

Thank ManchesterSango
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Reviewed March 12, 2012

Cannot agree more with others.. this is a Must See place.Specially if your interested in Modern & Contemporary Art. Don't get the Audio Guide unless you want to listen about the history of it all..

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

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