Gallery closes doors for refurbishment - The Rugby Observer

Gallery closes doors for refurbishment

Rugby Editorial 29th Sep, 2023   0

THE main gallery at Rugby Art Gallery and Museum (RAGM) has closed its doors for refurbishment.

Exhibition walls in the gallery, installed when the venue first opened its doors in 2000, are being removed and replaced ahead of the Rugby Open 23 exhibition, which opens on Saturday November 25.

Made from MDF, the exhibition walls hang from tracks in the ceiling, allowing the layout of the gallery to change for each exhibition.

The refurbishment follows the curtain coming down on Kapow – The Art of Making Comics and Film, the venue’s summer exhibition.




Featuring treasures from the Aardman archive, including original models of Wallace and Gromit, and a host of rare, classic comics, concept art and original sketches by leading comic book artists, the exhibition attracted nearly 10,000 visitors during its run.

Kapow also inspired the Little Elborow Street venue’s Super Summer holiday programme, which gave youngsters the chance to become creative superheroes at a range of arts and crafts sessions.


Katie Boyce, RAGM’s senior exhibitions and programming officer, said: “While we’re disappointed to have to pause the art gallery programme, especially after the success of Kapow, the exhibition walls need replacing to ensure we can change the gallery space for each exhibition and maintain the capacity to stage touring exhibitions.

“Following the Rugby Open 23 exhibition, we have a number of exciting touring exhibitions coming to the art gallery in the new year, including Quentin Blake illustrations and the latest show from the acclaimed ‘iPad’ artist Jason Wilsher-Mills, so we have plenty to look forward to in 2024.”

Despite the closure of the main gallery, the museum’s new social history exhibition, A History of Rugby in 50 Objects, opens on Saturday October 7, joined by the return of ‘Mini Rugby’ – a dedicated play space which encourages children to explore the history of the town in an immersive environment.

And the venue’s half-term holiday programme starts with a bang on Saturday October 28, when The Big Draw event dedicates a day to scribbling, sketching, printing and creating.

RAGM manager Sally Godden said: “By getting the main art gallery refurbished now, we can make sure it reopens in time for the popular Rugby Open exhibition and the busy festive season.

“We still have plenty to offer visitors during the refurb, with our archaeological and Floor One galleries both remaining open, and a new social history exhibition opening next month in the museum.

“We also have a busy programme of half-term activities to look forward to and The Big Draw, one of the most popular events in our calendar, so we’re still very much open to visitors while the work in the main gallery takes place.”

Visit www.ragm.co.uk for more information about exhibitions and events at Rugby Art Gallery and Museum.

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