The West Downs Gallery

The West Downs Gallery

Creativity is highly valued at the University. We are immensely proud of the extensive and diverse art collection on display in our buildings and throughout our grounds.

Much of our art collection dates back to the days of King Alfred's College when we delivered teacher training courses with specialisms in art. We continue to commission and collect works of art, and we work to support emerging local and regional artists. A rolling programme of exhibitions by contemporary artists is organised within our West Downs Gallery.

The West Downs Gallery is sited within the beautiful West Downs Centre on Romsey Road, our flagship campus building. The gallery hosts a programme of exhibitions across the year, and aims to show creative work of the highest quality to inspire debate and participation between creative professionals, academics, students and the public.

To be added to our mailing list about upcoming exhibitions please contact

Currently showing:

Fiona Hingston
'The Englishwoman's Flora'

7 May - 26 June 2024

Delicate paper flower sculptures displayed on a white wall

Part celebration and part lament for what is and increasingly isn’t to be found on the land she calls home, Fiona Hingston’s extraordinary labour of love includes 200 wildflowers made from masking tape, wire and graphite, based on The Observer’s Book of Wild Flowers, a popular pocket book first published in 1937.

“In 1962 Rachel Carson published Silent Spring, a book that foretold the destruction of flora and fauna by the indiscriminate use of herbicides and pesticides. Two years later in 1964, I was presented at a school prize giving with a copy of The Observer Book of Wild Flowers - the inscription states it was ‘awarded for excellent progress’. The irony of this was not lost on me when I recently opened the book and realised I can no longer find many of the flowers illustrated there. Progress at what cost? 97% of British wild flower meadows have disappeared since the 1930s.

Deciding that if I couldn’t find them I would get to know each of the 200 flowers in the book by making them. My hope is that with our increasing awareness of this devastating loss and subsequent effects on biodiversity, these ghost flowers just might have the chance to flourish again.”


Upcoming exhibitions

2 July - 8 August 2024, Dave Tipper, 'Heartwood'
is a photographic study into the landscape of Old Winchester Hill. The rich and complex history of the hill has created a number of winding pathways which are at first hard to follow. David Tipper's approach has been to study the landscape from a variety of different perspectives. By continually returning to the hill, night and day, the land begins to reveal its underlying stories and mysterious history. Heartwood will share secrets hidden by layers of time and de-centre our human perspective of the land itself. Expect digital photography, large format negative, night vision, video installation and alternative process.

Photograph of a dark path disappearing across the hills

PRIVATE VIEW: Thursday 4th July 4.00 - 6.00pm
Reserve your place here.

17 - 26 August 2024, Hampshire Sculpture Trust, 'Sensing Space' (as part of Hampshire Open Studios)


Visiting the West Downs Gallery

The Gallery is open from 8am until 6pm Monday to Friday and 8.30am until 4pm on Saturdays. The West Downs quarter is a short walk from the city centre. As there is no car parking on campus for visitors, we encourage you to make use of the Winchester Park & Ride, or to use public transport. Buses stop directly outside the West Downs Centre on the Romsey Road. To keep up-to-date with the latest Gallery news please follow us on Instagram.

Exhibiting at the West Downs Gallery

All exhibition proposals are considered by the Vice Chancellor's Advisory Committee on Art, which usually convenes twice a year. There is no charge to exhibit in the Gallery, but the University charges a 30% commission on sales.

If you are interested in submitting an exhibition proposal please contact in the first instance, and details of the selection procedure will be supplied.