GALLERY NOW OPEN

We’re looking forward to seeing you In line with step 3 of the government’s roadmap out of lockdown, the Barber’s galleries are now open, as of Tuesday 18 May. The permanent collection, exhibitions and displays can be enjoyed from Tuesday to Sunday, 10am to 5pm, and booking is essential. Before you visit, please familiarise yourself … Read more

WELCOME

Monet, Manet and Magritte; Renoir, Rubens, Rossetti and Rodin; Degas, Delacroix and Van Dyck – as well as Botticelli, Poussin, Turner, Gainsborough, Gauguin, Van Gogh, Bellows, Hodgkin and Auerbach… You can see key works by all these- and many more- great artists in the galleries at the Barber Institute of Fine Arts for free. There’s … Read more

From the Director

Welcome back to the Barber! We are open – welcome back to the Barber! The galleries are now open Tuesdays to Sundays from 10am to 5pm. To ensure everyone stays safe and well, entry is by timed pre-booked tickets with measures in place to ensure social distancing, good ventilation and hygiene. Book your free ticket … Read more

Drawing in the Dark

Barber Home – online workshop As we draw closer to the shortest day of the year, find comfort in the dark and harness its power as a tool for contemplation. Close your eyes, take a breath and join artist and Student Engagement Coordinator Kirsty Clarke for a relaxing and introspective drawing workshop, asking how we … Read more

Worm: art +ecology

Worm Art + Ecology logo

Barber Home – online workshop Facilitated by Angela Chan (curator, researcher and artist, also Worm: art + ecology), 7 December 2020. Angela Chan of curatorial project Worm Art +ecology investigated climate and environmental issues throughout art history in the Barber’s own collection. Angela hosted a guided workshop on how we might view and discuss painting, … Read more

Barber Home – Recovery

The tops of colourful pencils; they stand in a brown circular container.

Barber Home – online workshop Recovery Galleries are a space where exchange can take place between artists and audiences, space and materials. Earlier this year, our team explored how we might come together safely when Covid-19 enforced physical and mental restrictions on us all. Join us – with our Recovery Art artist facilitator Ruth Turnbull … Read more

Myth Personas: Visual Poems with Holly Hunter

A tumultuous scene- Apollo and Diana attack with bows from the top left; people scrabble to escape in vain.

Barber Home – online workshop Myth Personas: Visual Poems with Holly Hunter Inspired by the ink drawing The Death of the Children of Niobe by Conrad Martin Metz, in our prints and drawings collection, this workshop aims to bring voice to lesser known characters in Greek Mythology through playful interpretation. Artist and writer Holly Hunter will guide … Read more

Writing Together with Sipho Ndlovu

Edward Lear for Families – Writing Together with Sipho Ndlovu Get ready to jumble and tumble over words and create your own family tales, stories and poems. Join spoken word artist and poet, Sipho Ndlovu, for an online Zoom workshop designed especially for families. Be inspired by our 19th-century print ‘Tabuan Parakeet’ and the work … Read more

In The Picture: ‘My View’ Competition Winners

Painting of the front exterior of the artist's home

My View Thank you to everyone who entered our lockdown competition, and we hope you all had fun taking part. The theme was My View to help us think about our surroundings, let our imaginations fly and record our thoughts during the unprecedented period. Your entries didn’t disappoint – and we’re delighted to share some of … Read more

Family Trails

Family Trails Explore our collection through different themes with these fun and friendly family trails. Designed by Birmingham-based illustrator, Maxene Brown, especially for visiting families, these resources are free to print at home in advance of your booked visit or to download to your personal device. Use them to spark your creative ideas and meet … Read more

Sights of Wonder: Photographs from the 1862 Royal Tour

Sights of Wonder Pyramids, temples, sphinxes and shrines: breathtaking images of these ancient and often iconic landmarks, captured by pioneering photographer Francis Bedford, provided new insights for Victorians into the historic and biblical sites of the eastern Mediterranean. Generously lent by Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II, these remarkable photographs from the Royal Collection feature in … Read more

A Golden Jubilee: 50 Years of the Barber Coin Collection

In 2020, the Barber celebrates the golden anniversary of its coin collection – one of the most significant in the world. Scholars and numismatists, Geoffrey Haines (1899 – 1981) and Philip Whitting (1903 – 1988), each left their vast collections of a combined 15,000 pieces to the Barber with the condition that the coins were … Read more

Welcome Week

Welcome Week 2020 We’re looking forward to welcoming new and returning students to the University of Birmingham. Tuesday 22 September, 2 until 3.30pm; free via Zoom: The Expanded Portrait: Online Poetry Writing Workshop with poet Jasmine Gardosi. Join the Barber and local spoken-word artist and poet Jasmine Gardosi for an experimental and collaborative poetry writing workshop! Meet other like-minded students in this relaxed session … Read more

Tuesday Talks Series One

Series one Enjoy an in-depth insight into the Barber’s stunning collection through this brand-new programme of mini podcasts. Each week, staff recorded short ten-minute talks about a variety of topics relating to the Barber’s collections. Discussions include past and present displays, small groups of related works, an aspect of the member of staff’s own research, … Read more

Mengxia Liu – Illustrated Zoom Background

Barber Home – Illustrated Zoom Background We’re looking forward to welcoming new and returning UoB students this September! To celebrate, we’ve invited Mengxia Liu, a Birmingham-based artist, to create an illustration that captures the life and energy of the Barber and its beautiful original 1930s Art Deco foyer. Mengxia was inspired by contemporary movement duo, … Read more

Barber Schools

Thank you for your interest in our Barber Schools offer. Whilst the Barber champions its galleries as a space of learning and discovery for children and young people, the wellbeing of our staff and visitors is our priority at this time. As a result of current Covid-19 government guidance we’ve taken the decision to temporarily … Read more

Still Life Drawing

Barber Home – family Our homes have given us so much in the past few months, and we’re sure you’ve spent a lot of time looking at the objects that live in your space! How would you make an artwork about them? Create your own still life with artist Benny Semp using our downloadable art … Read more

Women in Hospitality Birmingham

Barber Home – online resource Inspired by Hendrik Goudt’s beautiful etching The Mocking of Ceres (1610), Chloë Qureshi, founder of Women in Hospitality Birmingham, has written a series of delicious, mouth-watering recipes. Chloë celebrates the Goddess Ceres and the four seasons through the mystical elder tree, with its fresh, zesty flowers of spring to the … Read more

The queer gaze: emotion and erasure

Barber Home – online talk What is queer historical erasure? Arts Educator Jon Sleigh reveals powerful queer coded messages, alongside sitters’ known histories, in this emotive journey through two of our 18th-century portraits. Portrait of Countess Golovina (about 1797/1800) by Élisabeth Vigée-Lebrun and A Portrait of Giusto Ferdinando Tenducci ( about 1773) by Thomas Gainsborough are two … Read more

The Barber Collective

Barber Home – digital showcase Celebrate the Barber Collective and its collaborators! Find out more about the Barber’s youth programme for 16 – 21 year olds and what they’ve been discovering, thinking about and creating. We showcase two projects with artists Navi Kaur and Hipkiss & Graney which explore far-reaching themes including colonialism, reclaiming histories, … Read more

Create a Camera Obscura

Barber Home – make a camera obscura Did you know you can turn a whole room into a camera obscura? Explore our online exhibition Sights of Wonder by learning more about the Victorian photography of Francis Bedford. Bedford was the first photographer to ever accompany a royal tour. He photographed temples, pyramids, and people along … Read more

Infinite Opera

Barber Home – online resource In March we had the pleasure of hosting an event, Nocturnes: Ethereal Science / Constructing Beauty, exploring Cornwall as Crucible. For this we commissioned Infinite Opera to make a response to the Barber’s recently acquired Constructivist sculpture, Linear Construction in Space No. 1 (1942 – 43), by the Russian artist Naum … Read more

Concertina Creepy Crawlies

Barber Home – Concertina Creepy Crawlies Investigate amazing creepy crawlies with artist Ruth Turnbull. Inspired by Wenceslaus Hollar’s 17th century print, learn about insects and create your own folded sketchbooks and paper mobiles. Our Barber Home family resources link to the key stage 1 and 2 curriculum to support you in the kitchen table classroom … Read more

Laura Onions – Interior of an Inn

Barber Home – artist response Artist Laura Onions shares a series of drawings, produced in lockdown, responding to Charles-François Daubigny’s 1861 etching, Interior of an Inn. Particularly taken with Daubigny’s play with light and shadow, Laura has used pared down materials to explore the domestic landscape of her own home. The drawings make visible moments … Read more

The Slip-Casting Process with Wendy Tournay

Barber Home – virtual studio visit Filmed in lockdown, ceramicist Wendy Tournay welcomes us into her Birmingham studio for this week’s edition of Barber Home. Responding to the Barber’s decorative ‘Gold Teapot with Stand‘, made in 1785, Wendy shares with us the meditative slip-casting process used to create her own teapot and also explains casting, … Read more

Creepy Crawlies Q&A

Barber Home – creepy crawlies Calling all insect explorers – ever wanted to know more about bugs? Inspired by the amazing specimens in our 394-year-old print by Wenceslaus Hollar, we asked Liam Crowley, an entomologist from the University of Birmingham, to answer all your questions about our creepy crawly friends in a live Q&A session. … Read more

CineQ Watch Party

Barber Home – watch party Barber Home and CineQ collaborated for an evening of independent queer film, celebrating queerness from our own homes. With many Pride events cancelled and usual safe spaces closed off, nurturing a community of support is more important than ever. Across the world trans and non-binary rights are being eroded, so while the … Read more

St Ives Scrap Sculptures

Barber Home – family Join artist Benny Semp and become a St Ives sculptor using our downloadable activity pack, inspired by our exhibition Cornwall as Crucible. Learn about the materials and techniques used by artists Barbara Hepworth and Naum Gabo and turn your household scrap materials into amazing Cornish-inspired sculptures! This family activity pack links … Read more