Work underway on £6 million gallery in Northfield, Aberdeen

ART lovers are in for a treat as work gets underway for a new £6 million gallery in one of Aberdeen's most deprived areas.

Aberdeen Art Gallery has been closed until 2017 as part of the redevelopment. Picture: Wiki Commons
Aberdeen Art Gallery has been closed until 2017 as part of the redevelopment. Picture: Wiki Commons

The new building will house millions of pounds worth of the city’s collection of artwork and historical objects while they are not on public display elsewhere.

Aberdeen Treasure Hub - a name chosen by pupils from nearby Northfield Academy - is scheduled to open its doors in the Northfield area this summer.

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And council bosses hope the move will open a new avenue into the world of art appreciation in the community.

The local authority has been criticised in the past for keeping up to 90 per cent of the city’s public art collection in storage.

But the museum collection site at Byron Square will be open to the public, so that they can finally enjoy it through guided tours, educational projects, school visits and learning events.

The centre also includes space for community use.

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The city’s main arts venues - Aberdeen Art Gallery, the Remembrance Hall and Cowdray Hall - are currently closed until winter 2017 as part of a major £30 million redevelopment project.

The new building in Northfield is expected to become the temporary home of many of the art gallery’s exhibits while the revamp is ongoing.

The collection is currently in specialist storage.

Council leader Jenny Laing said moving the artwork into a new cultural hub was part of a major investment in the city’s Northfield area.

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She said: “This is about bringing art and culture out into the community to an environment where people are comfortable and can interact with the collection on their own terms.

“It’s a huge part of our regeneration programme for the area, which includes the new Henry Rae community centre, hundreds of new council houses and sporting facilities.

“In Northfield, we have combined a programme of art and culture, sports, housing and community all under the umbrella of a regeneration that goes right to the heart of the area.”