Gallery Oldham has three large exhibition spaces plus a community gallery.
We take an innovative and unique approach to exhibition programming, bringing together what were once separate museum and gallery services.
Our programming incorporates Oldham’s extensive art, social and natural history collections alongside touring work, newly commissioned and contemporary art, international art and work produced with local communities.
In addition we have permanent displays around the building.
Gallery 1 – Oldham Stories
This gallery permanently houses both:
Oldham Stories exhibition, featuring selected objects from our extensive collections to tell and show the stories of Oldham and its local communities. From birds and shells to a recreation of an Edwardian chemist’s shop, every object has a fascinating tale to tell. The display features local figures such as suffragette Annie Kenny, the pioneering natural history collector James Nield and the popular artist Helen Bradley.
The Community Gallery, which has a wide range of exhibitions by groups and individuals from the Borough of Oldham.
Gallery 2 & 3 – Sounds Like Her
14 December – 7 March 2020
Sounds Like Her is a touring exhibition curated by Christine Eyene and produced by New Art Exchange. It brings together six artists to explore what sound can mean in different contexts.
The exhibition includes the latest version of Sonia Boyce’s Devotional Series, an ongoing piece that documents the input of influential black women in the music industry.
Christine Sun Kim has been deaf since birth. Her contribution to Sounds Like Her investigates how sound can be experienced when you are unable to hear – primarily through sight and touch.
The exhibition also includes pieces by Ain Bailey, Madeleine Mbida, Magda Stawarska-Beavan and Linda O’Keeffe.
Syd Shelton: Rock Against Racism
14 March – 31 May 2020
Syd Shelton’s photographs capture one of the most intriguing periods in British post-war history. Between 1976 and 1981, the movement Rock Against Racism (RAR) confronted racist ideology in the streets, parks and town halls of Britain. RAR was formed by a collective of musicians and political activists to fight racism and fascism through music.
Matisse: Drawing with Scissors, Late Works 1950-1954
21 March – 16 May 2020
This exhibition presents an overview of the spectacular last works of the French artist Henri Matisse. The paper cut-outs that Matisse made during the last years of his life are among his most vibrant and joyous creations. Confined to his wheelchair or bed, and no longer able to paint, sculpt or make prints, he ‘drew with scissors’, cutting directly into brilliantly coloured paper pre-painted by assistants under his supervision. This exhibition shows lithographic reproductions of these works.