barber institute of fine arts
university of birmingham

What our visitors say…

Our visitors are often keen to tell us how much they’ve enjoyed coming to the Barber. Here are some of their comments from our visitors’ book:

‘Wonderful opportunity to see great works for free!’- TC, Birmingham, 18/05/2018 

‘Sounding images is stunning! I ‘ll be back.’ – SG, Bournville, 18/05/2018

‘Great pictures and mixture of content.’ – KJ, Kent, 15/05/2018

‘Wonderful collection.’ – AZ, Leamington Spa, 10/05/2018

‘Quite marvellous!!’ – JM, Derby, 24/04/2018

‘Super collection. Well hit and laid on. Well done.’ – WT, Peterborough,  24/03/2018

‘An excellent exhibition and gallery. Will visit again.’ – KB & LB, Sutton Coldfield, 23/03/2018

‘Marvelous collection! Thanks so much.’ – AE, Vancouver, 15/03/2018

‘Loved it- very interesting and quite diverse collection- some masterpieces very inspiring.’ – AL, Leicestershire, 14/03/2018

‘Very interesting. Well presented and labelled exhibits.’ – JBF, West Bromwich, 13/03/2018

‘A wonderful place- what a gem!.’ – LCT, Sutton Coldfield, 10/03/2018

‘A treat to find this almost on my doorstep’. – ZU, Colwall Herefordshire, 07/03/2018

‘Lovely gallery with wonderful paintings on display.’ – BC, Edinburgh, 27/02/2018

‘Nice to have seen after a gap. Some of the pictures are memorable.’- JG, Birmingham, 24/02/2018







The Barber currently ranks in the top 10 most popular visitor attractions in Birmingham on TripAdvisor. Here are some of the great things our visitors have been saying about us on there:

‘I love this gallery. It’s free (with donations welcomed) and it has a good selection of art without being so huge that you forget what you’ve seen.’ -RS, Windsor and Maidenhead, 12/05/2018

‘You don’t tend to associate universities with art galleries, which is why the Barber is so unique. The quality of the curation is superb and the collection includes a number of works by French Impressionists that you’ll be stunned to find live in Birmingham!’
– User 339334, Dudley, 27/04/2018

‘The museum houses a nice collection. The design of the museum is also welcoming and calming. Definitely a place to get away and enjoy the afternoon.’- Klangton701, Fort Worth, Texas, 22/02/2018

‘Visit this gallery. Amazing paintings and all free. What a fantastic thing for Birmingham university to have such a gallery and its contents, I was bowled over. How lucky to be endowed with this treasure. Ongoing new acquisitions.’-Stoddd, 7/02/2018

‘Hidden deep in the campus of Birmingham Uni is this small art gallery with some stunning exhibits. An easy walk from the trAin station, there are masterpieces to be found. Experienced staff on hand to help too.’-Stephen392013, Coventry, 2/02/2018

‘This is perhaps the single greatest cultural gem in Birmingham – 100 of the world’s best paintings (basically one each by all of the world’s most famous painters), all in one friendly gallery. And free! You can walk around in a hour or two – but could easily spend several weeks there – up to you! Nice shop, too.’- TonyBov, Birmingham, 17/01/2018

‘The Barber Institute is a hidden gem in Birmingham. I visited recently with my daughter who was at the University of Birmingham & what a treat it was. It is understated with some really stunning art. There was a concert in the Hall below so the music wafted up creating a calming & lovely atmosphere that you just wanted to linger in & enjoy. I really enjoyed the visit & just wish I had visited it each time I visited the campus …’- Dee S, Shropshire, 18/12/2017

‘An amazing collection of works by many famous artists in a fine Art Deco building. This is the Midland’s own National Gallery with so many works by famous artists, yet it gets hardly gets crowded.’- Marg826, Coventry, 24/11/2017

‘We were astounded to find paintings by many famous pre-Raphaelite and Renaissance artists. The Byzantine coin collection was very well and interestingly described without too much detail…’- twinservices, Birmingham, 12/11/2017

‘Layout was spacious and everything was clearly labelled. The staff were friendly and informative. It was a very pleasant excursion which could take an hour, a morning or all day, depending on what you want to gain from it. A suggested donation of £5 is asked for and is well worth it.’- Sue O, 8/11/2017

‘It’s been a pleasure to walk the corridors of this building and even enjoy studying here OU – taking exams in the halls and graduating much later in life. Its a place that holds fond memories and always will. Glad it will be around for much longer for Others to enjoy for as long as possible – thank you Patrons well done!’- Andrea H, 6/11/2017





Sir William Orpen (1878-1931)

A Nude Girl Seated on a Bed


James Abbott McNeill Whistler (1834-1903)

La vieille aux loques (The Old Rag-Picker)


Aubrey Beardsley (1872-1898)

The Battle of the Beaux and the Belles


Kurt Schwitters (1887-1948)

Merz V