- Visit the Walker Art Gallery, one of the free museums in Liverpool, displaying Pre-Raphaelite works, John Moore prize winners, sculpture and internationally acclaimed art at this world museum, tracing the history and beauty of art.
- Check out the diverse range of collections, from 500 years worth of sculpture, paintings, fashion design and more.
- Don't miss out on the events and activities that you and the kids can get involved in, from painting, storytelling, puppetry, dressing up and festive events.
Take your kids to the Walker Art Gallery, aka the National Gallery of the North, where you can come across a diverse range of artwork that features Pre-Raphaelite paintings, to Tudor portraits, along with Victorian collections and even some Banksy. With over 500 years worth of art, you can get up close and personal with some renowned sculptural pieces, learn about the art of fashion and experience the best the art world has to offer.
Born in the early 1800s, the Walker Art Gallery grew from William Roscoe's own private collection, soon becoming one of the most impressive, significant and timeless collections that England has seen. Get started in room 1 where you will be introduced to the art of Medieval and Renaissance Britain and beyond, journeying through time to admire the likes of King Henry VIII portraits, and more. If you're a fan of art from a slightly later period, like Daniel Gabriel Rossetti, then be sure to make a trip to the High Victorian room to admire Dante's Room or Leighton’s Elijah in the Wilderness. Get up close and personal with the works of Impressionist artists such as Monet, Cezanne and Degas which you can find in the Impressionist Room.*Other notable artists here include Rubens, Rembrandt, Poussin and Gainsborough, cementing the Walker as an important European Gallery.
For those who love more modern pieces and contemporary art work, you're in for a treat, too as there is a great collection of art works, from Lucien Freud to Bridget Riley. Plus, they exhibit John Moores Painting Prize winters often, so you may stumble across works by Sarah Pickstone, David Hockney and more. Check out the Decorative Art Gallery to brush up on your pottery and glass knowledge, with 500 works of art ranging from furniture, fashion design and more, spanning ancient times to modernity.
In some of the rooms at the Walker Art Gallery, you can experience interactive displays and timelines that take you through the history of British art, like in in Room 11, which features modern artworks by the likes of LS Lowry. The 12th room houses the John Moore Prize Winners, which is one of the most significant British painting competitions. For more National Museums, Liverpool, fun check out the the Merseyside Maritime Museum to learn about the nautical history of Liverpool and the significance its played in trading at the docks, with interactive exhibits, tours and more.
Why not inspect the design work of the greats such as Vivienne Westwood. Admire the works in the Craft and Design gallery to trace the design history from the 18th century onwards, admiring the works of Malcolm McLaren, Paul Smith and more. Plus, don't miss out on the diverse range of sculptures that live in this gallery, some from thousands of years ago, managing to survive until now, along with contemporary sculptural pieces. Your kids will be fascinated to learn how the medium has changed. Plus, your little ones can have a blast of a time in the Big Art for Little Artists room where all the best activities take place. Get your kids drawing, sculpting, painting and more where they can get hand-on and creative, perfect for those under 8. With a gift shop, complimentary wifi and a cafe, you're sorted for the day. Whether your little ones want to create some beautiful artworks to gift to friends and family, or you prefer to stock up on jewellery, prints and cards, you'll leave the Walker Art Gallery with memorabilia and stand-out memories.
Don't miss out on the amazing events that the Walker Art Gallery, along with other Museum of Liverpool sites, host regularly. Check out the fun Christmas events where you can really get in the Christmas mood. Plus, there are activities and events where your little ones can get drawing, they can play with puppets, at the Walker Art Gallery, have a go at dressing up and more. Plus, be sure to check out the Storywalkers sessions, which is an educational acitvity and event that fosters multi-sensory modes of learning and engagement to develop your child's communication skills, along with physical development. It will get them excited about reading, plus with the chance to write, and make art. Along with these, there is Rhyme Time, Toddler Time, and Song Explorers, catered towards different ages and abilities.
For more historical days out in Liverpool, check out the International Slavery Museum, not too far from the Walker Art Gallery, tracing the harrowing history of the slave trade, from pre-slavery times in West Africa, to the contributions of black culture of society today.
What to know before you go
- The Walker Art Gallery opening times are Wednesday to Sunday 10am to 5pm.
- When you're feeling peckish, there is a cafe on the ground floor serving food, snacks and refreshments. Plus, being conveniently located in central Liverpool, you're a stone's throw away from a variety of eateries, from family friendly favourites, to independent restaurants, chains and more.
- There are toilets, accessible toilets on the ground floor, and baby changing facilities on the first floor
- The site is accessible, with lift access, along with wheelchairs that are available to borrow. There is seating dotted around for anyone who needs a rest. There is an area where you leave your pushchairs and lockers for large items like umbrella's and big bags.
- Allow for at least 2 hours to make your way around the gallery and get the full experience.
- If travelling via public transport to Walker Art Gallery, Liverpool Lime Street, Moorfields and Liverpool Central are all close by, plus you're conveniently located near Queens Square bus station.
- If travelling via car, the Walker Art Gallery is located near to Liverpool Lime street station and the Queensway Tunnel. Once in Liverpool, go via A5046.
- There is parking nearby on Hunter Street, Dale Street and Fontenoy. There are a limitied number of blue bagde spaces just a few feet away from the gallery. Alternatively, look here for NCP parking nearby.