Welcome to the Hunterian Art Gallery — Scotland’s oldest public museum and art gallery! Aside from the national museums and galleries, this Art Gallery boasts one of the country’s most robust and important collections of artworks. From Rembrandts to Rubens and local legends like the Glasgow Boys and Scottish Colourists, the Hunterian Art Gallery and Museum is an attraction you can’t miss while in Glasgow.
The Hunterian Museum and Art Gallery works closely with the University of Glasgow library, offering local up-and-coming artists a stage to grow and prosper. As one of the leading university museums in the country, Hunterian is a superb place for events and workshops to understand Scottish history and culture.
This prestigious gallery should be on everyone’s things to do list while in Glasgow, and we’re here to break down the important details and top attractions you should know before you visit. Let’s jump right into it!
In This Post
Important Details to Know
The Hunterian Museum and Art Gallery is an enchanting attraction for art lovers and history buffs alike, but here are some crucial details that you ought to know before you pay a visit to the abundant art collections.
Hunterian Art Gallery has some accessibility options available, including:
- The closest accessible toilets to the Hunterian Museum and Art Gallery are on Level 2 of the Fraser Building.
- A majority of the building can be accessed without the use of stairs, with lifts providing transport between floors.
- There is a dog toileting area outside the building.
For further enquiries about accessibilities, please look at the Accessible site for the Hunterian or contact the Art Gallery directly.
The Hunterian Art Gallery is open on all days of the week except Mondays. Between Tuesday and Saturday, the Gallery is open from 10:00 – 17:00. On Sundays, the Gallery is open from 11:00 – 16:00.
Hunterian Museum and Art Gallery Tickets
Entrance into the Hunterian Museum and Art Gallery is absolutely free! You do not need to purchase a ticket to peruse the important cultural assets on display here.
How to Get There
The Hunterian is in the centre of Glasgow, close to the University Library. This makes it easy to visit the Hunterian Museum and Art Gallery via local public transit and cars.
The quickest way to reach the Hunterian Art Gallery is via the Glasgow Gilmore Hill Campus. The attraction is only a 20-minute drive from Glasgow Airport — here’s how to reach the Gallery:
From the airport, drive onto the M8 and follow it across the River Clyde until you reach the A82 exit. Take the exit and follow Great Western Road, taking the left turn down Park Street (just before Webster’s Theatre). Drive down Park Street, then onto Eldon Street, Kelvin Way, and University Avenue.
Finally, take a right down Hillhead Street, and Hunterian Art Gallery should be on your left.
The closest train station to the Hunterian Museum and Art Gallery is Patrick, which is an 18-minute walk away. Otherwise, Charing Cross sits practically equidistance on the east side of the University buildings. The walk from the station is also about 18 minutes.
There are many buses that stop by the University Avenue by the Main Gate, so visitors are spoilt for choice on which bus to take. Bus routes 15 and 370, Stagecoach bus services X25, X25A, X76, and X77 all stop at the University Avenue bus stop.
Attractions to See
The Hunterian Art Gallery is home to one of the most distinguished public art collections in Scotland, as well as impressive ethnographic objects and an extensive anatomical teaching collection within the anatomy museum and zoology museum of the Hunterian Museum. But if you’re short on time or want to see the highlights, here are the top things to do during your visit.
Admire International Works by Famed Artists
The Hunterian Art Gallery is home to several amazing international artists for you to see during your visit. In fact, it is home to the world’s largest permanent display of works of James McNeill Whistler! See works like “The Egyptian”, “Screen with Old Battersea Bridge”, and over 80 oil paintings, hundreds of sketches and impressions. The holdings of this major art collection offer a view into the life of this prominent American artist.
If that wasn’t enough, the Hunterian Art Gallery also has works from Rembrandt and Rubens that guests can admire. So, if you want gorgeous historic pieces during your visit to Glasgow, then the Hunterian Gallery is the place to be.
See Scottish Art of National Significance
The international art collections at Hunterian are only matched by the collection of Scottish works here. The Hunterian Art Gallery boasts one of the most important collections from famed Scottish artists like Charles Rennie Mackintosh, the Glasgow Boys (a prominent group of Scottish artists from the 18th century), and even the Scottish Colourists.
In addition to historic Scottish artists, the Gallery also has contemporary pieces from Scottish artists — check out “Devil’s Watchtower” by Alan Davie, considered one of Scotland’s most important Modernists if you’re interested!
Visit Hunterian Museum
Break up your exploration of Hunterian collections with a visit to the Hunterian Museum. The museum houses an impressive collection of historic items, including from Captain Cook’s Pacific voyages and Ancient Egypt! Check out James Watt and Lord Kelvin’s scientific instruments and how Roman doctor Antonine Wall improved the world of medicine.
If you’re planning to bring children to the Hunterian Gallery, taking time to visit the Hunterian Museum is an excellent way to expose them to the beautiful history of our world.
Take a Trip to the Mackintosh House
The Mackintosh House comprises meticulously reassembled interiors that are made to resemble the home of Charles Rennie Mackintosh and his wife, Margaret MacDonald. They were world-famous artists and designers who made their own Glasgow Home. The interior is extraordinarily unique and distinct, and you can learn all about the history of this duo and their home.
You can see the Mackintosh House at the Hunterian Art Gallery, which also has the largest single holding of Mackintosh’s work.
Attend Talks and Events
The original collection at the Hunterian Gallery was bequeathed by Dr William Hunter, and this act of charity is continued today through the many talks and events that are offered throughout the year. These events are extremely fascinating, including talks that aim to introduce the world of art and history to young children at “Wee World Changers”.
There are also BLS-friendly tours of the Hunterian Gallery for deaf or hard-of-hearing visitors on offer. And if you can’t make any of the thrilling events, there are several options for online talks and events too.
More Scottish Galleries to Visit
- Aberdeen Art Gallery
- An Lanntair Arts Centre
- Compass Gallery
- Dunfermline Carnegie Library and Galleries
- Gallery of Modern Art
- Inverness Museum and Art Gallery
- Jupiter Artland
- Kelvingrove Art Gallery and Museum
- Kirkcudbright Gallery
- McManus Art Gallery
- National Galleries Scotland: Modern
- National Galleries Scotland: National
- National Galleries Scotland: Portrait
- Pier Arts Centre
- Royal Scottish Academy
- Stills Gallery
- Talbot Rice Gallery
- The Burrell Collection
- The Fruitmarket Gallery