Guest blog from CHWA's Kickstarters: The Cooper Gallery

Cooper art gallery text
Cooper Art Gallery

Personal Experience (Lewis)

This is a blog about the Cooper Art Gallery. My name is Lewis and I'm going to share my experience of the art gallery from an in-person perspective. The Cooper Art Gallery is a gallery that features beautiful old artwork from sculptures, seascapes, river views, and palaces to bridges. The Cooper Art Gallery features some unique paintings and masterpieces. The staff are friendly and there is a gift shop for travellers to buy gifts to take home.

For me this relates to 'Connect' in the five ways to wellbeing because you can relate to the different artworks - as well as 'Take Notice' - learning about how the different works were creates and seeing the individual brush strokes which makes me think about the level of detail and the hard work that had gone into making the work. It offers an opportunity for me to 'Give' by explaining what we've seen and hopefully encouraging you to go to the gallery.

Personal Experience (Xander)

When we went to Barnsley and explored the gallery, the first thing that stood out to me was the very inviting atmosphere. I believe this was achieved by the presence of the  cafe and giftshop located by the entrance. Stepping into the gallery was overwhelming, in a good way. There was so much art in so many different sizes and frames. The variety added to the experience and kept things refreshing as I journeyed throughout the gallery. The By Sea and River collection stood out to me the most and I must have spent at least 20 minutes sat staring at the various paintings. I particularly enjoyed this section as many of the artworks had ridiculous amounts of detail to the point where you kept noticing new things happening the longer you stared at it. In all I think the gallery was a lovely place to visit and I would happily do it again any day.

History behind the Cooper Art Gallery

Samuel Joshua Cooper purchased the Gallery building in 1912 when its occupants, the Holgate Grammar School, moved premises to Shaw Lane. His intention was to provide an art gallery for the people of Barnsley and to place his own art collection there for all to freely enjoy. Sadly, Samuel died in 1913 and did not live to see the opening of the Gallery in 1914. Before his death he had arranged for a board of Trustees to establish and maintain the Gallery and the collection of 275 paintings and drawings.

The Cooper Art Gallery is part of Barnsley Museums, who have provided us with this video. It displays the piece 'Church interior with a woman reading' by Samuel Dukinfield Swarbreck.


If you wish to discover more amazing pieces by the Cooper Art Gallery click here!


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