Golden Thread Gallery is Belfast’s leading contemporary visual art gallery. We work to broaden access to and improve public experience of visual art in Northern Ireland. Our purpose is to present innovative artistic programmes of high quality that embrace the breadth and variety of contemporary arts practice, and to develop, support and promote the work of contemporary Northern Irish artists and creative practice.
Our mission statement is “Creating a context, challenging perceptions, promoting creativity, delivering contemporary visual art for all”. We strive to be a destination where each and every visitor is engaged, educated, challenged and inspired by visual art.
Our main gallery annual programme showcases world-class national and international artists, while our Project Space programme is designed to support early career artists. We attract diverse audiences, and strive to make contemporary art more accessible to the widest possible audiences by providing arts-based outreach programmes. We provide a range of services, including: an exhibition program; a project space; in-house and off-site educational and outreach activities. Our offers have been devised to build audiences, improve access and public experience, and support the region’s contemporary visual arts professionals.
Each year our programme includes:
- 6 main space exhibitions (large scale exhibitions across our two main gallery spaces)
- 6 Project space exhibitions (a smaller space for emerging artists and experimental work)
- In-house workshops, talks and tours linked to the exhibitions
- Offsite workshops
The gallery plays an important role in contributing to the visual arts infrastructure of the city. We offer mentoring support to artists and arts professionals, as well as delivering talks and tours to schools, universities and social groups. We play an active role in the Belfast Visual Forum, with our Director acting as the Chair and our Deputy Director representing Galleries and participating in the Audience Development Working Group.
We have a strong track record of delivering projects which engage hard-to-reach groups and individuals of all ages, abilities and ethnicities, who may previously not have been involved in community or arts activities, addressing issues of Northern Ireland’s past and its future, i.e. sectarianism and high social deprivation. Through our exhibitions, projects and outreach work we build skills and connections; introduce groups to thinking in new ways through art; and provide creative tools to tackle complex issues. Organisations and community groups that we’ve worked with include: NICRAS; Brain Injury Matters; Lower Shankill Community Association; North Belfast Interface Network; Kilcooley Women’s Centre; Newhill Ladybirds Groups; Glenbank Community Garden; New Lodge Serenity Club. We’ve delivered Older People programmes across Belfast, North Down & Ards and Antrim Coast & Glens Council area, inclusive of age-related issues i.e. dementia.
GTG is a member of the Plus Tate network, lead partner in Draw-Down-the Walls and frequently collaborates with other arts organisations including Outburst Arts Festival, Culture Night and Belfast Photo Festival.