What we do

Firstsite presents a varied and challenging programme of exhibitions, commissions, residencies and screenings, in a broad range of media and art forms, by nationally and internationally acclaimed artists.

We also offer a wide-ranging programme of creative events and activities for the whole family – from drop-in sessions for parents and toddlers, to art and craft courses for adults, as well as special screenings, live theatre, opera and ballet screened from across the world, and talks and debates in our state-of-the-art cinema. A flourishing programme of work aims to bring people together through free shared creative activities – inside the building and at grassroots in the local community.

Our inclusive and evolving programme immerses audiences in a wealth of visual art brings this into the heart of our community.

We work with our community to explore and address current issues within politics, economics and culture, addressing and exploring urgent themes such as housing, migration, inequality, regeneration and healthcare. Our ambition is that these help us shape who we are: a public site, open and accessible, diverse and inclusive and used by all.

Every part of our artistic programme is shared and co-authored.

Firstsite is proud to be a partner of Plus Tate, an 35-strong affiliation of regional galleries, including The Baltic in Gateshead, Turner Contemporary in Margate and The Hepworth Wakefield, which join together to exchange ideas, knowledge, skills and resources, as well as programmes and collections.

Holiday Fun

Since 2017 we have been delivering the Firstsite Holiday Fun programme to provide children, young people and their families to eat, connect, be active, take notice, keep learning, and be inspired.

We offer free art and movement based activities throughout the holidays, along with free hot meals to family who will benefit from them

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Arts Council Collection National Partners Programme

Find out more about our partnership and exhibitions with the Arts Council Collection

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We stand with you

We believe everyone should have equal access to, and experience the benefits of, art and creativity. But more than this, everyone should have equal rights and equal opportunities full stop.

The continued violence, discrimination and oppression of black people across the world is abhorrent and is against everything Firstsite stands for. Black Lives Matter.

In response to current events in America, and across the world, we have commissioned artist Elsa James to produce a poster to help us all show our support and commitment to fighting racism, inequality and discrimination.

We stand with you

Our Communities

We are proud to work with a wide range of community partners to help shape all we do, from our artistic programme to our ways of working. We also support our partners by hosting a variety of community events from small meetings to large fairs and festivals.

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Welcome area at Firstsite. 'Big Hello' (2018) Peter Liversidge. Photo by Jayne Lloyd.

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