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Arnolfini - est 1961

Kate Brindley announces that she will leave Arnolfini in the New Year after three years of service.

“It is with mixed emotions that I am announcing that l will be leaving Arnolfini in the New Year to take up a new role as Director of Collections and Exhibitions at Chatsworth. This is a once in a lifetime role for me to oversee the acquisition and presentation of one of the most significant private art collections in Europe and one which can almost rival the Queen’s. As excited as I am to take up this new challenge, I am also sad to be moving on from Bristol and Arnolfini. It has been immensely inspiring and rewarding to contribute to the cultural and contemporary relevance of Arnolfini and to the city of Bristol at local, national and international levels. However, it is a good timing to pass the baton onto someone else to lead the organisation into its next three year phase of growth and development.

Despite this news it is with huge pleasure and excitement that we opened our autumn programme with Daphne Wright’s Emotional Archaeology exhibition last week (pictured). We have had great responses so far. Please share your thoughts using hash tag #DaphneWright

This exhibition marks the final chapter in what has been an exceptional and exciting year. Coming off the back of a superlative Richard Long Time and Space exhibition in 2015, we went straight into the highly acclaimed Vertigo Sea from John Akomfrah in January (pictured).

During our spring collaboration with Bristol Museum and Galleries for Art From Elsewhere, we announced Arnolfini had been awarded Museum of the Year Finalist status. Although we narrowly lost out this summer to the V&A, we have received huge support from you all – particularly through our #InspiredbyBristol campaign.

Our current Director of Audience Engagement, Helen Davies has been appointed to serve as Interim Chief Executive Officer. Helen has over 20 years’ experience working in multidisciplinary cultural and educational organisations and has played a leading role in shaping the ethos and vision of Arnolfini alongside our Director of Programming Rob Bowman. I can assure you that the programme plans for the next two years are shaping up to be amongst the best that Arnolfini has ever presented. More news to follow about that soon.

So during the next three months as I hand over, I hope to see as many of you as possible visiting us here on the Harbourside and do feel free to reach out and make contact with me if you see me in the galleries undertaking my invigilating duties. But above all else, I do sincerely hope you will all continue to get behind Arnolfini as supporters and visitors and help ensure that in Bristol there is always an Arnolfini that is Forever Free. Free access to the public, free of charge and free thinking and independent. And I am counting on you all to play your part in that in any way small or large.”


– Kate Brindley.