Exhibitions at York Museums Trust are scheduled at least two years in advance and often use our various collections and locations as a starting point.

Exhibition Proposals

Exhibition proposals – temporary closure 

During the coronavirus crisis, York Museums Trust is continuing to follow government advice and the safety and wellbeing of our staff, volunteers and visitors are of the utmost importance. 

In line with the latest guidelines, York Castle Museum, York Art Gallery and the Yorkshire Museum will be closed until further notice. Our exhibition programming process is also paused at this time.  

Under the government’s coronavirus job retention scheme, all but a few of our staff will be on furlough leave from Wednesday 1 April. If you have already submitted a proposal, please be aware that our work on this is currently on hold; we will be in touch after the end of the furlough period. New proposals will not be acknowledged or considered until after this date. 


Exhibitions at York Museums Trust (YMT) are scheduled at least two years in advance and often use our various collections and locations as a starting point.

We have rigorous standards for programming and proposals must support our strategic priorities and our aims for the public programme delivered across our sites at York Art Gallery, York Castle Museum and the Yorkshire Museum.

These aims, in summary, are:

  • To deliver excellent, high profile programming including strategic YMT-led events and high quality exhibitions at York Art Gallery to attract visitors to York
  • To ensure a quality, 21st century visitor experience, pro-actively engaging visitors with our sites and online
  • To improve the profile of York and York Museums Trust through local, regional and international leadership, partnership and delivering on all the expectations of key stakeholders
  • To drive income and increase visitor numbers to our sites
  • To meet the objectives of Arts Council England’s Creative Case for Diversity and/or reach new audiences, as well as support our Culture and Wellbeing agenda. The Creative Case for Diversity is our commitment to embracing a wide range of influences and practices and ensuring the diversity of audiences, leaders, producers and creators of arts and culture reflects the diversity of contemporary England
  • To innovate and present new stories, perspectives, collections, methods of display, artist or artistic approaches through our programming

We review proposals against plans for each site and factor in resourcing for our exhibitions programme.

Proposals must then be agreed by our Curatorial Review Panel and Public Programme Board which meet every two months.

Our curatorial teams undertake ongoing research into our collections, and we work in collaboration with various organisations to raise the profile of York as a world class destination.

Submitting a proposal

Ideas for the majority of exhibitions start within York Museums Trust, working from our own collections and research or through direct invitations to artists, curators and institutions. However, if you feel your proposal is well positioned to help fulfil our Programme Principles, please complete a proposals form and email it to [email protected]

Please note that York Museums Trust cannot acknowledge the receipt of all proposals and will only respond after the proposal has been considered and a decision has been reached.