Museum Of The Year winner announced

Art Fund Museum of the Year
Art Fund Museum of the Year "St Fagan's National History Museum" Image by Marc Atkins © Marc Atkins / Art Fund 2019

A museum which explores Welsh history has beaten the V&A Dundee to win a major arts prize.

St Fagans National Museum Of History, near Cardiff, has been crowned Museum Of The Year.

It was shortlisted for its exploration of Welsh culture and history, having undergone a £30 million redevelopment project.

V&A Dundee
V&A Dundee (Jane Barlow/PA)

It beat the newly-built V&A Dundee, as well as First World War cruiser HMS Caroline in Belfast, Nottingham Contemporary, and the Pitt Rivers Museum in Oxford to be named Art Fund Museum Of The Year.

Artist Jeremy Deller presented the £100,000 award.

HMS Caroline
HMS Caroline in Belfast (Marc Atkins/Art Fund/PA)

The prize, the largest arts award in Britain, is given to an “outstanding museum” which “has shown exceptional imagination, innovation and achievement across the preceding 12 months”.

Stephen Deuchar, Art Fund director and chairman of the judges, said: “St Fagans lives, breathes and embodies the culture and identity of Wales.

Nottingham Contemporary was shortlisted
Nottingham Contemporary was shortlisted (Marc Atkins/Art Fund/PA)

“A monument to modern museum democracy, it has been transformed through a major development project involving the direct participation of hundreds of thousands of visitors and volunteers, putting the arts of making and building into fresh contexts – social and political, historic and contemporary.

“This magical place was made by the people of Wales for people everywhere, and stands as one of the most welcoming and engaging museums anywhere in the UK.”

Pitt Rivers Museum
Pitt Rivers Museum (Marc Atkins/Art Fund/PA)

St Fagans National Museum Of History includes more than 40 historical buildings which have been set within 100 acres of parkland.

Visitors can see buildings ranging from a Tudor merchant’s house to a Victorian country school, as well as watch blacksmiths, bakers and clog-makers demonstrate traditional skills.


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