The Future of 20-21 Visual Arts Centre

The next three years are set to be an immense time for creativity and innovation in Scunthorpe following a tripling of funding from Arts Council England for the popular 20-21 Visual Arts Centre based in the town centre. A nationally recognised art gallery providing opportunities for families of all ages to express their creativity through engaging workshops, events and viewing exhibitions.

Arts Council England is the national development agency for creativity and culture with a vision of by 2030 England will be a country in which the creativity of each of us is valued and given the chance to flourish. Public money is invested from the Government and The National Lottery to help support this vision and the sector.

This funding will provide local employment opportunities, skills development for children and young people in our area and draw visitors to Scunthorpe following on from the success of exhibitions featuring Banksy, Grayson Perry, Antony Gormley and the national touring LEGO show Brick by Brick.

The substantial uplift in investment from Arts Council England will be used to continue showcasing frequently changing exhibitions for the whole family, take world-class culture into the heart of communities and inspire even more people to get involved with hands-on activities to improve wellbeing.

North Lincolnshire Council is also planning the completion of the restoration work needed to secure the iconic landmark building – the former church of St John the Evangelist, that houses the main exhibition spaces in 2024. 20-21 Visual Arts Centre will remain open during the conservation of the listed Grade II* historic building for exhibitions, creative workshops, shop, café and toilets. Exciting new additions and improvements will launch in time for Summer 2024 making our popular, award-winning gallery even better.

As part of this work plans are being developed for the chancel area to become a ‘hands-on’ creative participation zone following completion of the restoration in 2024 including an immersive experience!  20-21 will be developing an exciting space with both digital and physical items to explore and create memorable moments for visitors of all ages.

Testing of some of these new experiences has already begun inside 20-21 with the new immersive and interactive space. New sensory activities are being created with artists, local students and community groups during summer 2023.

These will run alongside the ever-popular ARTivities table where creative challenges are set, and visitors can make their own art to take home. Thanks to the additional funding from Arts Council England there will also be a more dynamic programme of workshops leading to skills development for our resident of all ages and more paid employment opportunities in the creative industries.

Our Visual Arts Centre has once again been awarded National Portfolio Organisation status by Arts Council England – national recognition that brings more exciting events to local families, including robotics, interactive activities and Turner-prize nominated artists.

We will be rotating onto new Exhibitions from Saturday 27th May; and present Long Live Lincolnshire, an exhibition of over 60 prints and editions by Turner Prize winning artist Jeremy Deller. From 17 June we present the first major UK exhibition by German based sculptor Peter William Holden who combines Art, Science, Performance and Robotics in his Artwork. Our summer months welcome Art in Miniature, the first exhibition of fantasy miniatures in a British public art gallery!

In the upcoming months we look forward to Refugee Week, Pride and the Christmas Lights Switch on, but until then we want to share with you what we currently have to offer at 20-21 Visual Arts Centre.

We look forward to welcoming you to our centre, there is something for everyone!

We are open Tuesday – Saturday 10:00am – 16:00pm, closed Sunday and Monday.