Applications open for Art Fund Museum of the Year 2020

The search for Art Fund Museum of the Year 2020 begins today, with applications invited until the deadline of 13 February.

The biggest museum prize in the world – with a total prize fund of £140,000 – Art Fund Museum of the Year champions UK museums on a national stage, rewards innovative and transformative work and inspires more people to go and visit them.

Museum of the Year is open to all museums, galleries and historic sites in the UK. Applications for the 2020 prize open today, Thursday 5 December, with an application deadline of Thursday 13 February 2020.

The shortlist of five museums will be announced in late April 2020, and the winner of Art Fund Museum of the Year 2020 will be announced at an award ceremony in London in early July 2020.

The winning museum will receive £100,000, while each of the other finalists will receive £10,000.

The competition has become an important vehicle for promoting the achievements of UK museums and raising their public profile nationally and internationally. Previously known as the Prize for Museums and Galleries, it was relaunched as Art Fund Museum of the Year in 2013 by Art Fund director Stephen Deuchar, who has chaired and selected the judging panel since then. He steps down from his role as director of Art Fund on 31 March 2020. The 2020 Museum of the Year chair will be Art Fund trustee Dame Liz Forgan.

The prize shines a spotlight on the originality and creativity of museums of all kinds and sizes from every part of the UK. To be considered, museums are asked to show how their achievements of the preceding year stand out, what makes their work inventive and the impact it has had on audiences. These achievements might include: innovative exhibitions and events, engagement programmes transforming lives in the local community, creative use of digital media and technology to connect with new audiences, a project that transforms the physical space of the museum, and leadership in areas of equality, diversity and inclusion.

Previous winners of the prize include: The British Museum, London (2011), Royal Albert Memorial Museum & Art Gallery, Exeter (2012), William Morris Gallery, London (2013), Yorkshire Sculpture Park, Wakefield (2014), The Whitworth, Manchester (2015), V&A Museum, London (2016), The Hepworth Wakefield (2017), Tate St Ives (2018), St Fagans National Museum of History (2019).

For further information and to apply visit

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