Ulster Museum Exhibitions
The Ulster Museum features many changing exhibitions throughout the year. From science and nature to art and history, there is something for everyone.
The Ulster Museum is open 10am - 5pm, Tuesday - Sunday. Closed Mondays (excluding NI Bank Holidays).
Current and upcoming exhibitions are below:
Remembering 1916: Your StoriesFriday 25 March 2016 - Sunday 19 March 2017
Remembering 1916: Your Stories uses museum and community objects to interpret the events of 1916, their impact on society and their legacy.
The Remembering 1916: Your Stories exhibition forms a key part of the Ulster Museum's 1916 centenary programme. As well as featuring a diverse range of material from their own collection, it will also draw on a selection of community objects and stories, collected through the Living Legacies First World War Engagement Centre.
1916 was the pivotal year of the war for Ireland because of events at home and abroad. The exhibition will acknowledge the importance of the Battle of the Somme and the Easter Rising as distinct events, but will also encourage visitor to make new connections and appreciate the impact of war and revolution on wider society.
The exhibition is divided into four main sections – ‘The Easter Rising’; ‘The Battle of the Somme’; ‘War and Society’; and ‘Legacy’. In addition to the range of artefacts on display, there will be audio visual displays and an interactive touch-table which traces the course of the war and includes 3D scans, short films and interviews.
Creative Centenaries #MakingHistory 1916Friday 3 June 2016 - Sunday 18 September 2016
The theme of the exhibition is creativity in 1916, exploring the concept of everyone in society playing a creative part in making history.
The focus of the exhibition is on the creative spark of each and every individual who plays a part in making history. For instance, those involved in a war or rebellion who have created an interpretation of their experience by telling their own versions of events in personal diaries, drawings or audio recordings. How society can be transformed through people making, innovating, inventing or using new technologies. Or creating new roles in society, for example with women leaving the home to work in munitions factories.
Five zones bring together extensive photographic and video archive material from leading heritage organisations including the Imperial War Museum, National Museums Northern Ireland, National Library of Ireland, and PRONI:
1. Making The Home Front: Families, Children, Workers
2. Making Citizens: Munitionettes, Suffragettes, Nurses, Trade Unionists
3. Making Myths, Making Heroes: Artists, Writers, Illustrators
4. Making New: Inventors, Makers, Explorers, Travellers
5. Making War: Soldiers, Rebels, in their own words and images and onscreen
Each zone contains archive images, interactive elements, news feed and artwork inspired by the events of 1916.
Framed: People & Place in Irish PhotographyFriday 19 June 2015 - Monday 30 May 2016
Photographs capture a moment in time in exact likeness, allowing us to see what people in the past saw – or what others wanted them to see. In doing so, they enable history to speak to us directly and with great clarity.
The Ulster Museum’s collections of historic photographs date from the 1850s and comprise many thousands of images relating to the history, topography and personalities of Ireland. This exhibition concentrates on the twin themes of people and place to illustrate the range and depth of these collections and how the photographers they represent framed and shaped our view of the past.
Elements7 March 2014 - 28 February 2017
to Zirconium, it’s time to get switched on to science with a journey
along the periodic table! Get set for an odyssey that will take you from
the rocks beneath your feet to the most distant and ancient reaches of
From microscopic viruses to vast galaxies – and you
too – all are made from elements. In this new exhibition, find out
where the elements were made, how they occur naturally, what they look
like, how we use them, and why they can be dangerous!
Order and RevolutionFriday 5 February 2016 to Monday 2 May 2016
This exhibition highlights the period between 1740 and 1840, which is generally considered a ‘golden age’ in British and Irish art. Some of the finest portraits in the Ulster Museum collection, by Reynolds and Gainsborough, are shown with landscape painting, sculpture and furniture, to illustrate the order and formal elegance of the period.
Bare LifeFriday 12 February 2016 to Sunday 26 February 2017
This exhibition charts the development of twentieth-century British art, with a particular focus on the post-war period. The title Bare Life refers to the often uncompromising and experimental way in which a number of artists during this period responded to the human figure, from Walter Sickert and Francis Bacon to Gilbert and George and Matt Collishaw. The exhibition includes an important recent acquisition, Red Conservatory by John Walker.
The BP Portrait Award 2015Friday 11 March 2016 to Sunday 12 June 2016
Selected from a record-breaking 2,748 entries by artists from 92 countries around the world, the BP Portrait Award 2015 represents the very best in contemporary portrait painting. From parents to poseurs, figurative nudes to famous faces and expressive sketches to piercing photo-realism, the variety and vitality of this touring exhibition from the National Portrait Gallery in London means it is not to be missed.
Light and LifeFriday 25 March 2016 to Sunday 26 March 2017
Exploring the ways in which seventeenth-century artists used light and shadow to create a sense of immediacy and realism in their paintings, this exhibition will consider how these effects are used in Dutch, Italian and Flemish historic paintings in the Ulster Museum collection and encourage new ways of looking at art.
For museum opening times, please visit www.nmni.com/uftm
Directions to Ulster Museum
The museum is a leisurely 20-30 minute walk from Belfast City Centre; follow signs for Queens University or Botanic Gardens.