Museums and Galleries Network for Exhibition Touring

The Museums and Galleries Network for Exhibition Touring (MAGNET) is a network of 11 museums and galleries that are joining resources to share their collections with diverse national audiences.

The network, established in 2020, are working on new ambitious touring exhibitions. The aim for partners is to co-curate collections-based exhibitions with high-quality content, designed to tour nationally.

“By working together, we all have a chance to showcase our collections, share knowledge and resources, and bring to our visitors a series of new and relevant exhibitions for a fraction of the cost of buying them in or creating each one ourselves.

This new collaborative way of working will be a powerful tool both in helping the limited funds museums have for exhibitions go further and in supporting our recovery in a post coronavirus world.”

Nick Merriman, Chief Executive of the Horniman Museum and Gardens

The MAGNET Partners are:

  • Horniman Museum and Gardens (lead)
  • Birmingham Museums
  • Bristol Museums
  • Derby Museums
  • Glasgow Museums
  • Manchester Museum
  • National Museums Liverpool
  • Museums Sheffield (Exhibition tour partner)
  • Royal Albert Memorial Museum, Exeter
  • Tullie House Museum (Exhibition tour partner)
  • Tyne & Wear Archives & Museums

The majority of the partners are based outside London as a way of rebalancing investment across the UK.

The Art Fund is supporting the MAGNET network, providing a grant for the first collaborative exhibition tour of Hair, Untold Stories an innovative exhibition exploring global hair cultures and our own relationships with it. The Hair exhibition will launch at the Horniman in December 2021, before touring to Museums Sheffield and Tullie House in Carlisle.

Work in Progress

The MAGNET network, through a series of online workshops, has created three more exhibitions for development, using the Hair exhibition as a model.

Working title: Environmental Sustainability

Partners

  • Derby Museums
  • Manchester Museum
  • Tyne and Wear Museums and Archives
  • National Museums Liverpool
  • Royal Albert Memorial Museum, Exeter

Potential themes

  • Ecological legacies of industrial cities and further exploration into archaeological evidence from partner museums
  • City resilience in a time of climate emergency
  • Wonderment and wellbeing contrasting with climate grief

Working title: Gender

Partners

  • National Museums Liverpool
  • Glasgow Museums
  • Bristol Culture and Creative Industries
  • Birmingham Museums Trust

Potential themes

  • Celebrate diversity in gender in a fun way
  • What is gender? Where does it come from?
  • Empire: Western attitude compared to other cultures

Working title: Colour

Partners

  • Birmingham Museums Trust
  • Bristol Culture and Creative Industries
  • Royal Albert Museum, Exeter

Potential themes

  • How colour is made, communicated and its meanings
  • How does colour affect our emotions and wellbeing?
  • A focus on family visitors
Partner