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Sainsbury Centre introduces ‘Pay if and What You Can’ ticketing to entire offer

Image: Sainsbury Centre Living Area (Pete Huggins)

Temporary exhibitions, which were previously priced at £14, will be accessible to all who enter the Norwich art gallery

The Sainsbury Centre has introduced a universal ‘Pay if and What You Can’ ticketing system across its entire offer, replacing its usually ticketed temporary exhibition spaces and free permanent exhibitions.

The Norwich art gallery, part of the University of East Anglia, said the £14 admission for temporary exhibits can be “prohibitive”, and its free permanent galleries have “lacked the creative invention, dynamism and investment they merit”.

Soon visitors will be asked to pay only if they can and whatever they want on their way in. They will then be given an access all-areas ticket and map to explore as they like.

The move, which it claims is a first for the UK, is hoped to break down the traditional boundary between the collection and temporary exhibition pricing.

The system is to be introduced on 12 March, in time for the opening of two new exhibitions, ‘Empowering Art: Indigenous Creativity and Activism from North America’s Northwest Coast ‘and ‘Julian Stair: Art, Death and the Afterlife’.

Sainsbury Centre Executive Director Jago Cooper said: “Our ambition is to enable and encourage more people to visit and enjoy one of the most genre-defying art museums in the world.

“An open and dynamic arts landscape across the whole museum provides a better experience for everyone who visits us.

“This is just the first of several transformations the Sainsbury Centre will be undergoing in preparation for a major relaunch in April 2023.”