Museum Moves 5 – 11 January 2024

Image: One of two works by Bran Symondson-Baxter on loan for the Re-Loaded exhibition at The Royal Armouries (Royal Armouries)

The weekly feature rounds up the latest updates in museum appointments, openings, funding and new exhibitions from across the UK.

Museum Moves is supported by Art Fund, which helps museums and galleries across the UK to develop their collections, support their staff and run exciting projects in their communities.


The Brunel Museum has appointed a Project Manager for its Brunel Museum Reinvented Project. Julian Ayre rejoined the museum, having formerly served as Heritage Manager from Jan 2020 to May 2021. The Brunel Reinvented Project will conserve the historic engine house and create a new welcome pavilion and new space to display the collection of Marc Brunel’s Thames Tunnel watercolour designs.

The Prime Minister has reappointed Allegra Berman, Amanda Levete, and Amanda Spielman as Trustees to the Victoria & Albert Museum, for terms of 4 years. Berman is a General Manager and the Global Head of Institutional Sales within the Markets & Securities Services division of HSBC Bank, and was previously a Trustee of the National Portrait Gallery and Chair of its Investment Committee and Finance Committees. Berman is currently a Trustee of the Wolfson Foundation and Chair of its Risk & Audit Committee. Levete is principal of architecture studio AL_A, which has completed projects for the V&A Exhibition Road Quarter and MAAT, the Museum of Art, Architecture and Technology in Lisbon. Spielman has been a V&A trustee since 2020, and is chair of the audit committee and a member of the Young V&A committee.


The reopening of Bristol science centre We The Curious has been pushed back to Summer following delays to the multi-million-pound repair programme caused by a fire in 2022. It had initially hoped to open to visitors early this year, but construction and supply chain delays have meant it now aims to be open by Summer.


The first UK museum exhibition devoted to post-war Italian designer Enzo Mari is to take place at the Design Museum. The 60-year career of the designer will be explored in an exhibition co-curated by Mari’s friend and collaborator, and artistic director of Serpentine, Hans Ulrich Obrist, with Francesca Giacomelli, Mari’s studio project assistant, designer, curator and researcher. More than 300 objects will be on display, the majority seen in the UK for the first time. Runs 29 March — 08 September 2024

An exhibition at the National Portrait Gallery is to showcase rare vintage prints by t influential photographers Francesca Woodman and Julia Margaret Cameron. More than 160 prints will be exhibited as part of the exhibition, ‘Francesca Woodman and Julia Margaret Cameron: Portraits to Dream In’. The exhibition will present a thematic exploration of the photographic work produced throughout both artists’ entire careers, 100 years apart. Runs 21 March to 16 June 2024.

The Royal Armouries has opened its ‘Re:Loaded’ exhibition of noteworthy guns. The museum, which calls the exhibition a “new direction”, explores the meaning behind the weapons in an exhibition which features a diamond encrusted, gold and platinum encased Smith and Wesson pistol, and an Art Deco ‘Baby Browning’ pistol. Also on display will be pieces by artist Bran Symondson-Baxte, who has loaned the museum two decommissioned AK rifles decorated with butterflies and Love Hearts sweets. Runs until 30 June 2024. (Pictured above)

One of Amgueddfa Cymru’s best loved paintings is to be transported to Paris to be displayed in a major exhibition to celebrate the 150th anniversary of the first ever Impressionist exhibition.

Renoir’s La Parisienne, also known as ‘The Blue Lady’, is being loaned to the Musee D’Orsay as part of the Paris 1874: Inventing Impressionism exhibition, which opens on March 26 this year. The exhibition will then move to the National Gallery of Art in Washington from September.

A large-scale installation by artist Antony Gormley’s is to be shown across the grounds and through the house at Houghton Hall in Norfolk the first time the work will be staged in the UK. A total of 100 life-size sculptures will be distributed across 300 acres of the park, the furthest away being approximately 1.5 miles. The cast-iron sculptures are installed at the same datum level to create a single horizontal plane across the landscape, meaning some are partially or nearly completely buried. The installation runs from 21 April – 31 October 2024.

At Abbey House Museum in Leeds, ‘The Power of Persuasion’ will look at both the spurious claims of history’s snake oil salesmen, and the iconic brands from Leeds and beyond which have stood the test of time and cemented their place in history. Among objects on display will be a selection of vintage signs which once hung in the streets of Leeds, including a giant pair of spectacles which once hung outside the famous Dyons jewellers.


The Dorset Museum & Art Gallery has been awarded a grant of approximately £250K by The National Lottery Heritage Fund, to support its marketing and public relations, diversify its retail operations, extend training and development programs for employees, and to assist in the development of a new strategy that informs a governance review.

Museums Galleries Scotland (MGS) has announced that £421,857 has been awarded to 9 museums across the country from the Scottish Government’s Museum Development Fund. Historylinks Museum, David Livingstone Birthplace, Stirling Smith Art Gallery & Museum and Kilmartin Museum are among those awarded capital for projects meeting “needs in their local community, increasing financial resilience, strengthening connections with their local area, and attracting national and international visitors.”