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Firstsite is a contemporary visual arts organisation based in Colchester with a mission to make contemporary art relevant to everyone.

Our integrated programme of work includes projects, exhibitions and publications by established and emerging artists, as well as extensive learning opportunities and artists’ support initiatives.

Over the last fifteen years firstsite has gained a strong reputation by presenting ambitious work to new audiences in the East of England and beyond.

We believe that contemporary art offers fresh perspectives on contemporary life; we are continually looking for ways to encourage dialogues between artists and audiences.

Our integrated programme is made up of three interdependent strands:

Learning programme
Artistic programme
Artists’ support programme

Plus Tate
firstsite is proud to be a partner of Plus Tate.

Plus Tate aims to support the development of the visual arts across the UK, and to foster a climate where exchange and partnership can flourish.

Tate's resources are used to contribute to a network of organisations and individuals for the benefit of the wider public, expanding Tate's reach, and increasing public access to the national collection of British and international modern and contemporary art.

together to exchange ideas, knowledge, skills and resources, as well as programmes and collections, the Plus Tate partners, along with and facilitated by Tate, will broaden and deepen engagement in modern and contemporary art across the country.


The partners share a common vision and ambition to inspire people about art. Each organisation, including Tate, is undergoing organisational development and change, often involving a capital project. All are committed to expanding participation in the visual arts and to collaboration and exchange with the network as a whole.

Plus Tate partners to date are:

Arnolfini, Bristol
BALTIC, Gateshead
Cornerhouse, Manchester
Firstsite, Colchester
Glynn Vivian Art Gallery, Swansea
Grizedale Arts, Cumbria
The Hepworth Wakefield
Ikon, Birmingham
Kettle's Yard, Cambridge
mima, Middlesbrough
Mostyn, Llandudno
Newlyn Art Gallery & The Exchange, Penzance
Nottingham Contemporary, Nottingham
The Pier Arts Centre, Orkney
Towner, Eastbourne
Turner Contemporary, Margate
Whitworth Art Gallery, Manchester
Wysing Arts Centre, Bourn (Cambridge)
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