British Queen celebrates


Museums across Skipton, Dundee, Manchester, and London are vying for the esteemed title of Museum of the Year 2024.

Among this year's contenders, three have recently undergone significant renovations, reopening to the public within the past 18 months.

Spanning a diverse array of themes including portraits, natural history, science, textiles, fine art, and spaces for children's creativity, the shortlisted institutions showcase the breadth and depth of the UK's cultural landscape.

The winner, to be announced on July 10th, will be awarded £120,000, with each of the remaining four finalists receiving £15,000.

Presented by Art Fund, the UK's leading charity for art, the Museum of the Year award is hailed as the world's most substantial museum prize. The shortlist, unveiled by Art Fund, highlights projects open to the public between autumn 2022 and winter 2023.

Organizers emphasize criteria such as community engagement, sustainable practices, and innovative reinvention in their selection process.

Jenny Waldman, speaking on behalf of the judges, lauded the shortlist as "shining examples of the impact museums are making locally and nationally," noting their commitment to inclusive programming and youth empowerment despite the challenges of funding constraints.

The nominated museums include:

-Craven Museum (Skipton, North Yorkshire): Nestled within Skipton Town Hall, this museum covers a broad spectrum of topics, from archaeology and textiles to fine art and social history.

-Dundee Contemporary Arts (Dundee): With its impressive array of art galleries, cinema screens, print studios, and educational programs, Dundee Contemporary Arts stands as a beacon of artistic excellence in Scotland.

-Manchester Museum (Manchester): Following a comprehensive renovation, this 130-year-old institution reopened its doors in February 2023, showcasing a vast collection spanning natural sciences and human cultures.

-National Portrait Gallery (London): Boasting six centuries of portraiture, the National Portrait Gallery reopened in June 2023 after a transformative three-year renovation project.

-Young V&A, Victoria and Albert Museum (London): Formerly known as the V&A Museum of Childhood, this newly reimagined space is dedicated to inspiring creativity in children and young people, providing interactive areas for exploration, play, and design.

As anticipation builds for the announcement of the winner, these museums stand as testament to the enduring significance of cultural institutions in enriching communities and fostering creativity. Photo by JHillCDC, Wikimedia commons.