New Acquisitions Announced

4 April 2018

The Arts Council Collection, the UK’s largest national loan collection of modern and contemporary art, today unveils the full list of 47 works by 25 artists that it has acquired for the nation in 2017-18. It was a noteworthy year for female artists coming into the Collection; for the first time the number of female artists outweighs the number of works by men, 15 to 10.

Among the highlights are works which will soon be on view in galleries across the country; Emma Hart’ s, Fork Face, 2017 is currently included in Arts Council Collection’s latest touring exhibition at Longside Gallery, Yorkshire Sculpture Park, In My Shoes: Art & the Self since the 1990s, before setting off on a nationwide tour.  Two works from Manchester-based artist Miskha Henner’s series Dutch Landscapes, 2011 will be shown at Towner Art Gallery’s exhibition At Altitude in Eastbourne in June this year.

We are delighted to have received support from the Art Fund this year to acquire two major works Caragh Thuring’s Ardyne Point, 2016, which will be part of another ACC touring show, curated by artist, Yinka Shonibare opening later this year. The acquisition of Melanie Manchot Dance (All Night, London) 2017, a collective dance performance specially commissioned by Art Night (London) was made possible by Art Fund and Art Night.

Additionally, the artist John Sheehy gifted two works, which accompany three other paintings which were purchased by the Collection. Sheehy began painting at the age of 51, and over the past 18 years has produced a vast body of work that includes painting, printmaking and sculpture, in addition to playwriting, poetry and music. These works were presented in the artist’s first institutional exhibition, at Studio Voltaire in June 2017.

Turner Prize winner Lubaina Himid’s, 2002 is a major work which celebrates an important but little known act of solidarity by Manchester mill workers at the time of the American Civil War. As President Lincoln moved to abolish slavery, cotton supplies from the USA dried up, resulting in mass unemployment.  Despite the high personal cost, the workers’ unions passed a motion in support of Lincoln’s efforts to end slavery.

The Arts Council Collection supports and promotes British art and artists by buying their work at an early or critical stage in their career. The Acquisitions Committee also purchased 4 paintings by Bradford-born artist Matthew Krishanu.

Explore the full list of New Acquisitions 17/18.



The Arts Council Collection is the UK's most widely seen collection of modern and contemporary art.

With more than 8,000 works by over 2,000 artists, it can be seen in exhibitions and public displays across the country and beyond. This website offers unprecedented access to the Collection, and information about each work can be found on this site.