The New Art Gallery Walsall


Why Use The Garman Ryan Collection?


I believe that the Garman Ryan Collection is an excellent resource for teaching art in Walsall.

It offers a collection that is permanently on display and is rarely changed. This enables teachers to talk about work and show reproductions with the knowledge that the work will be displayed when a visit is arranged.


The collection provides an awe inspiring breadth of work from different cultures and different eras covering a vast range of subject matter.

It offers work of known and unknown artists and crafts people of both young and old, with an emphasis on sculpture not found in most galleries.

The variety of artists represented stands as a testament to the commitment of Kathleen Garman and Sally Ryan.

Some minor works by famous artists encourage further study through books, other galleries and web-site links.


It offers the teacher: ‑

For those who lack time, the schemes of work are organised to make the most of local opportunities providing appropriate age-related resources for each key stage.

For those who lack confidence in art teaching it offers a systematic course that offers the opportunity to learn alongside pupils and to get expert support, input and advice as required from gallery staff during visits etc.

Themes and starting points to help meet NC criteria.

Work in the gallery backed by teaching packs (based on themes of Animals, Family, Portraits and Landscapes), books and post-card reproductions.


It offers the school/art coordinator

The opportunity to take advantage of a superb local resource that can save time and money in organising trips/visits.

I find that the gallery staff are friendly, approachable, helpful, easy to meet with after school and are willing to make individual arrangements if required.


The schemes of work provided in this book aim to save the art co-ordinator time in organising delivery of the NC2000 with suggestions for delivery, feedback and evaluation.


It avoids the criticism (by Ofsted and others) of the narrow range of artists studied in schools (Artworks commented on seeming reliance on Monet, Van Gogh and Andy Goldsworthy!) by covering a wide range.


The opportunity to forge links with other schools through taking part in courses or workshops organised for either staff or pupils.


It offers the pupil: ‑

Work they can relate to (1) subject matter much is about day-to-day life (2) age at least one picture produced by Theo Garman age 15 (3) range of local and more exotic inspirations.

Many of the works are of a scale and technique that reflects working patterns in a crowded classroom (i.e. no huge oil paintings or large video installations.)

The work provides a starting point that aims at a systematic acquiring of knowledge and techniques.


Access pupils can visit independently and with their families and friends whilst shopping at weekends (open Sat and Sun). And it's FREE!

Provides opportunities to re-visit artists and to research independently.



The collection has, like any collection, certain areas of weakness, where important movements are not represented. Abstraction, surrealism and more contemporary artists (since the collection was completed) are for example not represented. This, however, can be made up for by augmenting the work available in the collection with the large range of work shown in the temporary exhibitions, put on in the temporary exhibition space on the third floor or in the Discovery Gallery downstairs on the ground floor.


The Discovery Gallery also offers an inventive exciting experience for children containing opportunities to explore many different styles of contemporary art works. It can be booked as part of a visit to the Garman Ryan Collection as can the temporary exhibitions galleries.


Practical Information for your visit


Self-guided Visits

Self guided visits are welcome, however please book in advance to ensure that the galleries are not overcrowded.



Photography and video filming without a flash is allowed for educational purposes. Please complete a copyright form available from the reception desk. There is a 1 charge for photography per visiting education group. This web site contains at least one image of every object in the collection except for those that are still under copyright and copyright clearance has not yet been obtained. Copyright fees have been paid for their use in the CD ROM 'Inspiring Creativity' thus the the CD ROM contains images of every object.



The use of dry materials only is welcomed in the galleries but activity rooms can be booked if groups wish to use wet or messy materials.



A dedicated cloakroom for up to three classes is available for use.


Lunch Area

There are two Activity Rooms that can be used for packed lunches if they are free. Booking in advance is essential.


Group Size

We can accommodate up to 90 pupils in the gallery but only one class at a time for talks. Teachers and group helpers must stay with their group, and be responsible for their students in the galleries. The preferred adult to student ratio is one adult to 15 secondary school students, 1 adult to 6 primary students and 1 to 4 foundation students.


Admission to the gallery is free. Charges are made for some talks and workshops and other events.



If you would like further information about the formal education programme or about special projects with other individuals and organisations please contact the Education Department on 01922 654400. If you would like to make a booking please contact the Education Department at least two weeks in advance.