Southampton has a wonderfully rich collection of modern and contemporary works acquired by a number of progressive curators including Margot Heller, Stephen Snoddy and Godfrey Worsdale.
For over twenty years Southampton has been collecting wall paintings including works by Daniel Buren, Michael Craig Martin, Douglas Gordon, Liam Gillick, Martin Creed and Jeremy Deller.
More recent acquisitions have included a number of video installations by Roddy Buchanan, Georgina Starr, Gary Stevens, Hilary Lloyd, Paul Morrison and Graham Gussin; many of these works were gifted by the Contemporary Art Society.
Southampton is an active contemporary exhibition space, programming a variety of temporary exhibitions throughout the year in conjunction with a number of other arts organisations.
Searching on the website you may mistake Southampton for a bit of a mediocre local authority gallery, until you explore the online database and you suddenly become aware of its importance and the truly wonderful collection.
The building itself is imposing with a comfortable café-cum-canteen. The 1930s entrance hall meets the sweeping stair up into the main galleries where you find one wonderful work after another. If I could I would move to Southampton just to be close to this collection. Visit and be inspired; the city does not realise what a gem this is.