On 28th April 2018, my fellow Oldbury Writing Group members and I visited the Birmingham Museum and Art Gallery. This was the first time I had ever gone to the museum and art gallery, and I couldn’t wait to explore the treasures inside.
The visit was originally meant to be part of a bigger Birmingham Art and Architecture Tour, but due to the weather (it rained all day, typical), we cancelled the tour and only visited the museum and art gallery.
We didn’t have a writing group meeting first, so we made our way to Birmingham separately or in small groups. I travelled on the metro with Angela and Jackie – I love riding on the metro when going into Birmingham because it’s cheap and quick.
Once we all arrived at the museum and art gallery, we took a group photo and then made our way further into the building. The first room we came to was the Round Room where the Jacob Epstein’s Lucifer sculptor greeted us. This is a magnificent room that is surrounded by stunning artwork that requires any visitors’ full attention. I do recommend that you go round the whole room and take the time to appreciate these masterpieces. When we finally dragged ourselves from this room, we delved further into the museum and art gallery to see what else it had to offer.
We, with the help of our OWG guide Julian, walked through the many impressive exhibitions. We saw artwork ranging from the 14th century to the 20th century – I was amazed by how many of the paintings could pass for photographs. Also in the museum and gallery were exhibitions which showed sculptures and artefacts from all the many faiths in Birmingham, such as the Sultanganj Buddha sculpture.
With feeling peckish, we decided to have a break and a bite to eat. We were originally going to go to the Edwardian Tea Rooms but decided to try the Bridge Café instead. I had the pleasure of trying their mocha and carrot cake, which was delicious. My mouth is watering at the thought of it.
After our drinks and cake, we were energised and ready to continue our tour. Our brilliant tour guide showed us the way to the Staffordshire Hoard, which is where the famous Staffordshire Hoard treasures are displayed. The Staffordshire Hoard is the biggest hoard of Anglo-Saxon silver metalwork and gold ever found, which is something I didn’t know about before my visit – I love learning new things. While here, Julian shared his knowledge about the time, which helped us to appreciate what we saw even more. Moving on from this gallery, we went up to level three to see the Ancient Near East, Ancient Greece, Rome and Cyprus and Ancient Egypt Galleries. I love history, so I couldn’t wait to see the artefacts, especially the Ancient Egypt gallery, which has artefacts from over 3000 years of Egyptian culture, life and religious beliefs. Well, I wasn’t disappointed by any of the galleries, and my brain struggled to absorb all the impressive artefacts that I saw. It’s amazing to think that someone who died a long time ago once used what we saw.
Once we finished in these galleries and our feet couldn’t take anymore, we made our way to the gift shop, which is my favourite place. I bought a Birmingham Museum and Art Gallery multi-coloured pen for me and a pink bookmark for my cousin.
Overall, I had a brilliant time here, and I would recommend this to anyone. If you do decide to visit, then you should be prepared to spend the whole day.
Have you ever visited the Birmingham Museum and Art Gallery? Feel free to comment below if you have or would like to. I’d love to hear your experiences.
Keep writing, folks!