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Take part – at home

Workshops, talks, resources and family activities – all available online so you can take part from home.

Barber Home

Many of the below resources were made as part of Barber Home.

Barber Home began in April 2020 during the coronavirus pandemic as a way for the Barber to remain ‘open’ as a place for people to engage with creativity and learning – and provided an exciting opportunity to work collaboratively with artists and partners.

Since then, the project has had a lasting impact and we continue to create digital resources and engagement activities for our audiences.

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Online Recordings

Art and climate change | Worm art + ecology

Angela Chan of curatorial project Worm Art +ecology investigated climate and environmental issues throughout art history in the Barber’s own collection though a guided workshop. We explored how we might view and discuss painting, sculpture and prints through the lens of environmental research and global histories.


Myth Personas | Visual Poems with Holly Hunter

Inspired by the ink drawing The Death of the Children of Niobe by Conrad Martin Metz, this workshop aimed to bring voice to lesser known characters in Greek Mythology through playful interpretation.

Artist and writer Holly Hunter guided us through a series of drawing and writing exercises to create poetic visual responses to this incredible artwork.


The Queer Gaze | Emotion and Erasure

Arts Educator Jon Sleigh reveals powerful queer coded messages, alongside sitters’ known histories, in this emotive journey through two 18th-century portraits in the Barber Institute's collection:

Portrait of Countess Golovina by Elisabeth Vigee-Le Brun and A Portrait of Giusto Ferdinando Tenducci by Thomas Gainsborough.


Degas and Miss Lala |  Artist Performance

In response to this preparatory sketch of Olga Kaira Brown, Miss Lala at the Cirque Fernando (1879) by Edgar Degas, Birmingham-based artist Exodus Crooks (formally De'Anne) presents a  desktop performance engaging with themes of spectatorship, strength and Blackness. This online event explores the history of Olga Kaira Brown and the artwork and also featured a Q&A session with Crooks.



Gender Gap Zine Wide

The Gender Gap Zine | Round Lemon 

Have you ever contemplated our collection through a feminist lens?

In January 2023, Round Lemon ran an event that took us on a journey through art history as they broached the subject of the gender gap and addressed how women artists are represented in art galleries.

Explore the zine the art collective produced in response:

Mengxia Liu

Barber Foyer Tour | Mengxia Liu

Artist Mengxia Liu created this illustration, capturing the life and energy of the Barber and its beautiful 1930s Art Deco foyer.

Explore the many varied artworks dotted around the foyer and see if you can spot them in the drawing.

For Families

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Zine-making with Sarah Taylor Silverwood

Inspired by Adriaen van Ostade’s drawing The Child and The Doll, join artist Sarah Taylor Silverwood to make a zine and reflect on time spent with your family, whoever and wherever they may be.

Use this zine template.

This activity can be adapted for all ages.


Jo Gane camera obscura

Create a Camera Obscura with Jo Gane

Explore our online exhibition Sights of Wonder by learning more about the Victorian photography of Francis Bedford. Bedford was the first photographer ever to accompany a royal tour. He photographed temples, pyramids, and people along the way.

This resource is designed for children aged 5+ and is linked to the year 2 and 6 science curriculum.

Benny Semp St Ives

St Ives Scrap Sculptures with Benny Semp

Inspired by our previous temporary exhibition Cornwall as Crucible?

Learn about the materials and techniques used by artists such as Barbara Hepworth, turning household scrap into amazing sculptures!

This family activity pack links to key stage 1 and 2 art and science curriculum.

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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 Eric Ndlovu, for a pre-recorded Zoom workshop designed especially for families.

This workshop is suitable for children aged 6+.


More ways to take part: