Art Fund to take over sponsorship of the Museum Prize

  • 25 May 2007

The Art Fund has announced that it is to sponsor the Museum Prize - the largest single arts prize in the UK - from 2008. This year's prestigious £100,000 prize has been won by Pallant House Gallery in Chichester.

The Art Fund’s Chairman David Verey officially announced sponsorship of the prize at the glittering awards ceremony which was attended by, among others, Tessa Jowell and Radio 4’s Jim Naughtie.

The Prize - run by the Museum Prize Trust and currently sponsored by the UK branch of the Calouste Gulbenkian Foundation - will be known as The Art Fund Prize for Museums and Galleries. The coveted £100,000 prize is given annually in recognition of the most imaginative, innovative and popular developments of the previous year.

The purpose of the Prize is to raise public awareness of the best developments in museums and galleries throughout the UK. The judging panels change annually and comprise a mix of museum and gallery experts, artists, academics and journalists, and well-known public faces. Last year’s winner was Brunel’s ss Great Britain in Bristol which has reported a 30% increase in visitor numbers since winning the Prize.

This year’s winner, Pallant House Gallery in Chichester, was awarded the coveted prize for its £8.6 million modern gallery extension, designed by Long and Kentish in association with Professor Sir Colin St John Wilson, who died only two weeks ago.

Pallant House Gallery holds one of the best small collections of 20th-century British art in the UK. Visitors can see works by artists ranging from Peter Blake, David Bomberg and Patrick Caulfield to Ben Nicholson, John Piper, Walter Sickert and Graham Sutherland. It is also one of the first galleries in the UK to install a geothermal heating and cooling system, cutting its carbon emissions by 40-50%.

In 2004 the Gallery was the recipient of a major gift of around 400 works by 20th-century British artists including Peter Blake, Patrick Caulfield, Lucian Freud and RB Kitaj, given by Professor Sir Colin St John Wilson via The Art Fund.

Related Links:

Museum Prize 2007

Pallant House Gallery