Posted : 22 July 2020

Scotland’s ‘Best Visitor Attraction’, The McManus: Dundee's Art Gallery & Museum will be reopening on Thursday 20th August.


Visitors and Dundonians alike will once again be able to experience Dundee's museum collection in eight beautiful open gallery spaces. The galleries act as the City's civic memory, housing fascinating individual items of art, which provide an engaging insight into the history of Dundee. 


Earlier this year, The McManus: Dundee's Art Gallery & Museum struck gold at the 2019/20 Scottish Thistle Awards National Final in Edinburgh where they won Best Visitor Attraction. Now they are ready to celebrate and begin their journey out of lockdown with the opening two new major exhibitions to visitors. ‘A Love Letter to Dundee: Joseph McKenzie Photographs 1964-1987’ and ‘Time and Tide: The Transformation of The Tay’ will both focus on change in the city.


The Joseph McKenzie exhibition returns to Dundee of the 1960s-1980s. Stunning black and white photographs evidence the changing fortunes of the City and its people. McKenzie is considered by many to be the father of modern Scottish photography and his Dundee works are just the balm that we need coming out of lockdown. They remind us of Dundee's strength through changing times, the value of community and the knowledge that we can look forward to better times ahead.


Throughout the lockdown period, the River Tay has provided a calm backdrop to the anxiety around us. Time and Tide looks at the influence of the Tay without which, Dundee would not exist nor have transformed from a small medieval settlement to Scotland’s fourth largest city. This exhibition looks at how the growth of the city, particularly along the waterfront, has affected the Tay, its wildlife and the people who live here. From early settlement to industrial giant, to post-industrial leisure destination, the waterfront continues to recycle and reinvent itself.


Sinclair Aitken, Chair of Leisure & Culture Dundee said

“This is more positive news for cultural tourism in the city, as the reopening of The McManus will encourage even more people to spend time in the city centre. Leisure & Culture Dundee has an important role in supporting the health and wellbeing of everyone in Dundee and continues to contribute positively to recovery and renewal in the city.” 


Billy Gartley, Head of Cultural Services at Leisure & Culture Dundee said

"The McManus has long been a Dundonian favourite. We’ve missed our visitors - and with the prestigious accolade of Visitor Attraction of the Year - we hope many more will be tempted in. Our collections comprise Dundee's civic memory, reminding us of both good and challenging times from the past, highlighting the enduring spirit of our citizens. With two outstanding new exhibitions we can't wait to welcome you back."


Careful planning will ensure all appropriate measures are in place to protect the safety of staff and customers. The attraction will be part of the “We’re Good To Go” scheme, the official UK mark to signal that a tourism and hospitality business has worked hard to follow Government and industry COVID-19 guidelines and has a process in place to maintain cleanliness and aid social distancing.


 As ever, admission is free, but donations to support the work of The McManus in caring for the City's collections are welcome.


Both exhibitions open on Thursday 20th August.  A Love Letter to Dundee: Joseph McKenzie Photographs 1964-87 runs for over a year, until Sunday 24th October 2021. Time and Tide: The Transformation of the Tay runs until Sunday 18th April 2021.


Keep up to date with developments through The McManus website, or follow us on Facebook, Twitter or Instagram.  Full details on upcoming exhibitions will follow.