Visitors to Chapel Gallery will still receive a warm welcome this autumn even though further work is being carried out to make it a landmark cultural destination for the North West.
Phase two of the exciting gallery re-development began on Monday 18 September, and will create a second exhibition space on the first floor of the building.
This will double the amount of events, programmes and performances the gallery can host and allow it to take larger higher profile touring shows as well as more innovative art shows, including those featuring digital media. This will help raise the gallery’s profile and make it an even more important centre for the arts in the North West, as well as attracting more visitors to Ormskirk. There will be more exhibition opportunities for local artists which will help them develop their careers.
The facility will also have an exhibition space that individuals or groups can hire and on the ground floor the café will be moved to the front of the building, providing a bigger multi-functional space perfect for parties or events.
This latest part of the project received £68,000 from Arts Council grants and builds on work carried out at the West Lancashire Borough Council owned gallery last year. Previous improvements included the installation of a lift and an amazing contemporary glass window on the new main entrance, created by young people from Tarleton Academy and the artist Jo Vincent. These improvements were also enabled by a grant of £128,000 from Arts Council England.
Councillor Yvonne Gagen, portfolio holder for Leisure, said: “This wonderful re-development of the gallery is great news and I am really excited to see what the future holds for this fantastic facility for the people of West Lancashire".
“The external funding secured for the project proves how the Council provides great value for money for the benefit of local people.”
The improvement work is expected to last six weeks and most of the facilities and programmes are running as normal. However, some bookings have been temporarily re-located and the art club will now be meeting at the bowling club in Coronation Park, Ormskirk, for the duration of the work.
An exciting new exhibition called ‘Wandering’ opened on Saturday 16 September. This will run until 11 November 2017 and features the work of 10 UK-based artists who share a fascination with the natural environment.
Trees feature heavily in this group show and at its heart is a reconstructed woodland, that incorporates light, sound and ambient smells, bringing the outside in.
Visitors are encouraged to slow down and step inside this immersive installation that aims to explore the calming, energising qualities that spending time in nature can provide.