Oriel Davies Gallery is a key public art gallery of Wales, based in Newtown, rural Powys presenting world-class, thought-provoking and challenging art by national and international artists in an environment that is welcoming, engaging, informative and free. The Gallery and exhibition spaces are family-friendly, physically accessible and ideal for experiencing contemporary art.
The Gallery originates and presents around ten exhibitions a year, across three gallery spaces. These range from major exhibitions selected from national collections, through to new work by established artists, and to more experimental work by emerging artists in Oriel Davies’ Test Bed space. As well as commissioning new work, Oriel Davies also produces artist films and a range of high quality publications.
Gallery facilities include a light, bright modern café, which serves delicious homemade specialities both inside and out on the café terrace. There is also a shop with a wide range of unique designer jewellery, ceramics and textiles by locally and nationally acclaimed makers, as well as art books and magazines, design-led giftware and stationery and children’s toys, books and games.
Alongside the exhibition programme, which often tours to other venues nationally, Oriel Davies also runs a broad mix of stimulating workshops, courses, talks and events. The Gallery is also widely known for its innovative offsite projects and outreach programmes for schools, colleges and the wider community.
Oriel Davies was formerly named Oriel 31. The gallery opened in 1982 in Welshpool and in 1985 moved to the Davies Memorial Gallery, Newtown. Designed in 1967, this pavilion-style structure was built with a legacy left by Gwendoline and Margaret Davies, renowned art collectors and benefactors of the arts in Wales.
Oriel Davies Gallery reopened in 2003 following an extensive refurbishment programme which upgraded the main exhibition space, provided a new gallery shop and foyer, and a beautiful glass and steel extension housing the gallery cafe. The refurbishment was completed in 2004, and provided an extended second gallery space, a new education room and public resource area, and a greatly enlarged foyer and gallery shop.
When the gallery reopened, its name was changed to Oriel Davies Gallery in recognition of the Davies Sisters