Dinosaurs, Vivienne Westwood and the BFG! York Museums Trust’s Major Exhibitions and Events for 2018

18 December 2017

Take an epic journey back to Jurassic Yorkshire, marvel at a private collection of Vivienne Westwood shoes and see the illustrations which brought the BFG to life, next year at York Museums Trust attractions.

In March, Yorkshire’s Jurassic World will open at the Yorkshire Museum, exploring the deepest oceans, tropical seas and ancient coasts of 150 million years ago.

In July, a private collection of iconic shoes by Vivienne Westwood will come to York Castle Museum on loan from The Civic, Barnsley.

Then in October, The BFG in Pictures will bring illustrations by Quentin Blake to York Art Gallery in a touring exhibition from House of Illustration.

York Art Gallery’s programme will also include The Sea is the Limit, an exhibition on migration; a major exhibition on the work of Lucie Rie; and Strata – Rock – Dust – Stars, a digital art exhibition to coincide with the York Mediale.

Reyahn King, chief executive of York Museums Trust, said:

“The next 12 months are set to be an exciting time to visit our attractions, with some fantastic exhibitions and events planned. We have attracted shows featuring household names such as Vivienne Westwood and Quentin Blake’s illustrations of the BFG, while working with exciting and thought provoking artists on exhibitions such as The Sea is the Limit and Strata – Rock – Dust – Stars. The latter continues the Trust’s interest in embracing digital technology, which is also a major part of the Yorkshire Museum’s Yorkshire’s Jurassic World. Here you will be transported back to the deep oceans, tropical seas and dinosaur country of ‘Jurassic Yorkshire’ using the latest technology. You can even feed a virtual dinosaur lunch!”

2018 will also see the Friends of York Art Gallery celebrate their 70th year with an exhibition at York Art Gallery and York Castle Museum celebrate its 80th year. The Aesthetica Art Prize will return to the gallery and there will also be the return of the Eboracum Roman Festival and York Proms in the York Museum Gardens and A Victorian Christmas at York Castle Museum.

Below is a list of forthcoming exhibitions and events (by site in chronological order).


York Castle Museum

21-23 April 2018
York Castle Museum’s 80th Anniversary
York Castle Museum celebrates its 80th anniversary this year. The opening weekend will be marked with special events and a display of founder Dr Kirk’s earliest, most unusual and fascinating objects.

13 July 2018 – 28 April 2019
A Personal Collection of Vivienne Westwood Shoes
A touring exhibition from The Civic, Barnsley. More details to follow.

23 November – 24 December 2018
A Victorian Christmas at the Castle
Experience the magic of a Victorian Christmas on our world-famous cobbled street, Kirkgate.


Yorkshire Museum and Gardens

From 24 March 2018
Yorkshire’s Jurassic World
Take an epic journey back through 150 million years of Yorkshire to discover lost giants and the changing worlds they inhabited in this brand new major exhibition. From the depths of the deepest seas to the ancient coasts and tropical shallows, see the dinosaurs and sea monsters that once roamed our vast and ever-changing landscapes. Rediscover our prehistoric predecessors through some of the oldest and most fascinating remains in the region as well as the latest research and ground-breaking technology as you step into Yorkshire’s Jurassic World.

1 – 3 June 2018
Eboracum Roman Festival
The Legions of the Roman Empire return to York and set up base once more in the York Museum Gardens. The weekend will include military displays, a Roman village and expert speakers talking about the rich Roman history of the city.

30 June 2018 
York Proms
Following its successful first year in 2017, the proms will return to the idyllic surroundings of York Museum Gardens.


York Art Gallery

May – September 2018 (exact dates to be confirmed)
The Sea is the Limit
This exhibition expresses the clash of realities in the minds of the migrants as well as the receiving countries. It features artists that have been working on the topic of migration and borders for decades, including Varvara Shavrova, Nidahl Chamekh, Thomas Kilpper, Massimo Ricciardo and Susan Stockwell.

May – September (exact dates to be confirmed)
Friends of York Art Gallery 70th Anniversary
The Friends mark their anniversary with an exhibition of the works they have helped buy for York Art Gallery collections, as well as some of their favourite pieces of art.

18 May – 30 September 2018
Aesthetica Art Prize
Hosted by Aesthetica Magazine, the Aesthetica Art Prize is a celebration of excellence in art from across the world. It offers both emerging and established artists the opportunity to showcase their work to a wider audience, and further their engagement with the international art world.

From 22 June 2018
Lucie Rie
An exhibition celebrating the life and ceramics of Dame Lucie Rie (1902-1995), highlighting her button production during the Second World War and considering their connection to the domestic wares she became celebrated for.

29 September 2018 – 13 January 2019
Strata – Rock – Dust – Stars
An exhibition of cutting edge digital art to coincide with the York Mediale, bringing together leading digital artists from around the world.

12 October 2018 – 24 February 2019
The BFG in Pictures
The BFG in Pictures is the first major exhibition of artwork by Quentin Blake for Roald Dahl’s enduring tale. It is a touring exhibition from House of Illustration.