Things to see & do at Leeds Art Gallery

Explore our permanent collection and temporary exhibitions set amongst the stunning architecture of our unique gallery spaces.

A free attraction in the heart of the city, the gallery collection comprises a wide range of modern and contemporary art along with an extensive programme of events.

Visit our what’s on page to find out what’s happening during your trip to Leeds Art Gallery and find out a little bit more about our collections ahead of your visit.

Entrance hall & staircase

Brightly coloured wall painting by a classic staircase

Enter the light filled entrance hall and take in the bright and beautiful work of Lothar Götz.

The entrance hall is home to important works from the collection including sculptures by Antony Gormley.

Götz’s stunning wall painting Xanadu links the lower and upper galleries, leading up to the light-filled space above. Both colourful and contemporary it is juxtaposed against the Victorian architecture of the gallery.

Lower galleries

Explore the lower galleries including work from the early years of the collection, temporary exhibitions and sculpture.

The Ziff Gallery displays a collection of  Victorian art including favourites such as John Atkinson Grimshaw, while the Sculpture Galleries hold works of national importance from artists including Henry Moore and Barbara Hepworth.

Temporary exhibitions are held across The White Gallery and Small and Large Lyons Galleries.

Landing and West Gallery

A collection of portrait paintings is hung in a gallery by a Victorian staircase. It is being observed by two women

The Lives of Others

Taken at face value, a portrait offers an intimate glimpse into a historical moment through the depiction of an individual. This display takes a different approach bringing together a wide range of works that feature images of people, and sometimes where people are notable by their absence, suggesting new and sometimes unlikely alliances to get us to consider how our contemplation of others might be affected by the social and psychic relations between people across time and space.

Artists include Mark Gertler, Leon Kossoff, Jacob Kramer, Winifred Nicolson, Stanley Spencer, and many others.

West Room

New sculpture acquisitions

This display of recent acquisitions features sculptures by Edward Allington, Phyllida Barlow, Norman Dilworth and Nigel Hall. Leeds Museums and Galleries’ sculpture collections, a long-established partnership of Leeds City Council and the Henry Moore Foundation, has built one of the strongest collections of British sculpture in the country and is underpinned by the curatorial and research expertise of the Henry Moore Institute.

South Gallery

Staged. ‘Grand Guignol’: Surrealism and Beyond

Art might prompt us to see the world as we’ve never seen it before, and it also allows us to see the world as we view it from day to day while stretching our perceptions. Such was the endeavour that lay behind Surrealism, one of the most pervasive and influential movements of the 20th century. In this display, there is a kind of static theatre at play where art objects perform, like characters in a play looking for a storyline that never properly emerges, and objects never really reveal their true function, while viewers can uncover their own understanding of relationships between things and the often uncanny way they hover between the human and inhuman.

Artists include Karen Babayan, Helen Chadwick, Steven Campbell, William Orpen and Jack Butler Yeats.

North Gallery

The Expressive Mark – Extended

This display focuses on abstract painting that emerged from the impact American art had on British artists in the post-war years and beyond. Abstract Expressionism, as it was known from the late 50s and early 60s, came to be seen as a form of shorthand for concepts of freedom and self-expression. Into this uninhibited and expansive field of painting, British artists Gillian Ayres, Wilhelmina Barns-Graham, Alan Davie, Albert Irvin, and more recently, Fiona Rae, brought their own sense of discipline and form to redefine the language of abstraction.

East Gallery

Object – Space – Time: John Tunnard amidst the English Modernists

The collection of early 20th century modernist art includes a group of distinctive paintings by John Tunnard (1900-1971). Most of them were a gift to the Gallery in 1997 and here we present them together alongside paintings and sculpture by his contemporaries. Many of these artists knew him and his work, though Tunnard took a singular course, and the display locates small groups of work by the lesser-known Tunnard, amongst other works by Paul Nash, Barbara Hepworth, Henry Moore, Edward Wadsworth and C R W Nevinson, and more recent artists, to uncover alliances and mutual interests underscored by affiliations to the natural world.


Artspace is a relaxed, family friendly, creative space in the heart of the gallery.

The space is now open and we invite you to enjoy our summer holiday programme. See what’s on and pick-up a Laura Slater activity pack during your visit. You can also download our Mindful Creative colouring-in sheets to complete from home.

A man looks happily at his daughter who is colouring-in at Leeds Art Gallery