The Burrell Collection in Pollok Country Park, Glasgow, houses the 9,000-object collection of Sir William and Constance Burrell. Managed by the charity Glasgow Life, it was officially reopened by King Charles in October 2022 following a major refurbishment and redisplay, which aimed to celebrate diversity through the museum’s rich and varied collection and create the most accessible, inclusive and sustainable fine and decorative arts museum in the world.
Jenny Waldman, director, Art Fund and chair of the judges for Art Fund Museum of the Year, said: “The Burrell Collection is extraordinary – a world-class collection displayed in an inspirational building, in harmony with the surrounding landscape of Pollok country park. Reopened in 2022, the sensitive renovation and collection redisplay invite exploration and delight, with innovative digital displays offering new ways of understanding the art and objects in the museum’s light, welcoming spaces. All this was achieved with a strong shared purpose and with the involvement of local community groups in Glasgow. Huge congratulations to the talented team at the Burrell Collection for winning Art Fund Museum of the Year 2023 and to those who invest in supporting its important work. Thanks to them this museum is truly for everyone to enjoy.”
The Burrell Collection welcomed over 500,000 visitors in the year after its reopening and contributed an economic impact of £20m for Glasgow in its first six months. The redisplay was co-curated with a wide range of community groups to ensure the museum showcases diverse and inclusive perspectives, and the Burrell team also partnered with local schools and a range of diverse community groups to amplify their voices. Over 100 pieces of unique digital interpretation from immersive experiences to interactive games give context and meaning to the collection on a scale and to a quality previously unseen with decorative and fine art collections.
The winner was one of five finalists. The other shortlisted museums are: Leighton House (London), The MAC (Belfast), Natural History Museum (London) and Scapa Flow Museum (Orkney).
Image : The Burrell Collection, Art Fund Museum of the Year winner 2023 © Janie Airey/Art Fund 2023