South London’s Dulwich Picture Gallery to get new sculpture park in £4.6m overhaul


A key art venue in south London, Dulwich Picture Gallery, will undergo a major redevelopment, encompassing a new sculpture garden and a new building for school and family activities. The project, known as Open Art, is estimated to cost £4.6m “with applications to trusts and foundations currently in process”, the gallery says in a statement.

The gallery’s first major revamp in 25 years is being designed by the architects Carmody Groarke who will oversee the new hub for families and schools and an extension of the existing gallery cottage. “These interventions will provide much needed facilities for school groups and young children offering art-based learning experiences,” a statement says.

Meanwhile the southern portion of the site, which is inaccessible, will be transformed into Lovington Meadow, a “land artwork” designed by the landscape artist Kim Wilkie. An “art forest” of around 150 newly planted trees will be sited in this area which will also be home to a new biennial sculpture competition. This outdoor gallery is funded by the Lovington Foundation.

Existing facilities will also get a revamp with new temporary sculpture installations due to be shown alongside Walking the Dog by Peter Randall-Page, acquired in 2011, and Bronze Oak Grove by Rob and Nick Carter. “The gallery aims to acquire this [latter] sculpture which will set the tone for the sculpture garden,” the statement adds.

Construction is set to start late 2023 with the project—recently approved by Southwark Council—scheduled for completion by early 2025. The gallery will remain open throughout.

The French Impressionist Berthe Morisot (1841-95) is currently the subject of an exhibition at Dulwich Picture Gallery, which explores how a honeymoon trip to England left a lasting impression on her work.


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