We are very pleased to announce that Gainsborough’s House will be open to the public from 21st November 2022.

Our project transforms Gainsborough’s House, Sudbury, into an international centre for Thomas Gainsborough at the site of Gainsborough’s birthplace and childhood home. 

With support from The National Lottery Heritage Fund, the £10 million transformation includes a new three-storey building providing new spaces for exhibitions, displays and learning, as well as renovating and reconfiguring the Grade I listed historic townhouse and the whole Museum site.

The new centre opens up access to the most extensive collection of work by Thomas Gainsborough anywhere in the world.  With new display spaces, the museum will highlight Gainsborough’s widespread influence on his contemporaries and succeeding generations of artists.  Displays examine the inspiration of the Suffolk landscape, not only on Gainsborough, but on John Constable and more recent artists, such as Cedric Morris.

Mark Bills, Director, Gainsborough’s House, said:

“The physical transformation of Gainsborough’s House will fundamentally change this historic site, enabling it to become an international centre for Thomas Gainsborough and a cultural hub in the heart of East Anglia, all within the unique environment of the artist’s birthplace and home.  This ambitious transformation which will ensure that Thomas Gainsborough continues to be a relevant force in art history and an inspiration for generations to come.’

Adam Zombory-Moldovan, Project Director at ZMMA, said:

“The powerful connection between the landscape surrounding Sudbury and its representation in Gainsborough’s work inspired us to create a new gallery building whose clay and flint materials are brought directly from the fields of Gainsborough’s Suffolk landscape.  From the expanded Museum campus, visitors will enjoy long views over the countryside beyond the town’s rooftops.  Suffolk’s soft skies soak deep into the new galleries and spaces through light shafts and picture-windows.  Sudbury’s silk-weaving story led us to make façades with a woven brickwork pattern, and to silk-line a new gallery for Gainsborough’s grandest canvasses.  Gainsborough’s home has been reimagined and enriched to make complementary historic and modern settings for the Museum’s displays.”

Eilish McGuinness, Chief Executive, The National Lottery Heritage Fund, said:

“I am delighted that we have been able to support the reimagining of Gainsborough’s childhood home, with a significant investment of £5 million, to tell the full story of one of our most important British artists.  The sensitive architectural additions in local materials add to the original house, which has been delicately and beautifully restored, providing the perfect backdrop for works by Gainsborough, his contemporaries and those he influenced from across generations. The setting with views across the Suffolk landscape will also provide a magical place for visitors to enjoy in the very landscape Gainsborough painted and grew up in, providing a special destination in this beautiful part of the country.”