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Firstsite

High Street | Lewis Gardens, Colchester CO1 1UF, England
+44 1206 577067
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Ranked #3 of 4 shopping in Colchester
Type: Art Galleries
Owner description: Firstsite is a visual arts organisation based in Colchester, Essex. Firstsite's stunning golden building was designed by the Uruguayan architect... more » Owner description: Firstsite is a visual arts organisation based in Colchester, Essex. Firstsite's stunning golden building was designed by the Uruguayan architect Rafael Vinoly, and opened in September 2011. The gallery initiates world-class exhibitions by established and emerging artists, produces publications, and has 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. « less
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52 reviews from our community

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Date | Rating
  • English first
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English first
Derby, United Kingdom
Senior Reviewer
6 reviews 6 reviews
6 helpful votes 6 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed July 9, 2014

not all exhibitions will suit every space, but this combination is fantastic. The giant paintings hung on the expansive walls can be properly appreciated, and the smaller objects , photos and information are easy to see in the cases and internal room. Look out for the paintings of swimmers, Gucci bags, and the ceramic jugs and then sit with a... More

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firstsite, Public Relations Manager at Firstsite, responded to this review

Hi Charbren, So glad you enjoyed your visit to firstsite, we hope to welcome you back soon! More

Norwich, United Kingdom
1 review
5 of 5 stars Reviewed June 29, 2014

We enjoyed our visit to an outstanding building.It's great that the Town has this iconic new building.The exhibition of Bruce McLean was excellent and well displayed. Let's see more great art here. It's good to be able to see art like this without having to go to London. We will be coming again. Firstsite is an positive addition to the... More

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firstsite, Public Relations Manager at Firstsite, responded to this review

Hi Martin, So glad you enjoyed your visit to firstsite recently, we look forward to welcoming you back soon. More

Essex, United Kingdom
Top Contributor
69 reviews 69 reviews
36 attraction reviews
39 helpful votes 39 helpful votes
1 of 5 stars Reviewed April 23, 2014

Our second visit (after a gap of more than a year) proved to be just as disappointing. Once inside, the first impression is "there's a lot of empty space, with very high ceilings and sloping walls, which couldn't be used for displaying anything of interest". The staff give the impression that the place is an embarrassment to them. Okay, so... More

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firstsite, Public Relations Manager at Firstsite, responded to this review

Hi Vic, Many thanks for your feedback and sorry to hear you didn't enjoy your recent visit to firstsite. Our Gallery Assistants are specifically trained to welcome everyone, so many apologies that this is not what you received during your visit. It's a shame that you didn't visit during our Sophie von Hellermann exhibition, in which we used the high,... More

Suffolk UK
Senior Reviewer
6 reviews 6 reviews
5 attraction reviews
4 helpful votes 4 helpful votes
2 of 5 stars Reviewed March 27, 2014

We visited Firstsite found it 'odd'. So much money for an art gallery that has very small galleries with large spacial corridors lined with walls that you cannot exhibit on cos they lean. I like contemporary design if it incorporates or reflects its surroundings but this is just a building, in isolation, soulless. Looks cheap. Sad really cos Colchester is... More

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firstsite, Public Relations Manager at Firstsite, responded to this review

Hi Sue, Sorry that you didn't enjoy your visit to firstsite. As I'm sure you're aware firstsite has a changing exhibition programme, with each exhibition the building and all it's spaces are used in different ways. I very much recommend that you return to firstsite from 14 May when our summer exhibition (a 40-year survey of Bruce McLean's work) will... More

London, United Kingdom
Senior Contributor
42 reviews 42 reviews
10 attraction reviews
30 helpful votes 30 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed March 18, 2014

It's worth a trip just to see the building, we are so lucky to have something of this magnitude in Colchester. I enjoy the exhibitions and have seen some films there. There is just something lacking, a coherence that brings it all together maybe? I was there on day one when it opened and it was full of people and... More

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firstsite, Public Relations Manager at Firstsite, responded to this review

Hi Alan, Thanks for your feedback and your ongoing support. As you know firstsite has a changing programme of exhibitions and we hope that if the exhibition you visited was not to your taste, perhaps a future one will be. We aim to work with MUSA café and the people who use the spaces outside to make the whole experience... More

London, United Kingdom
Reviewer
4 reviews 4 reviews
6 helpful votes 6 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed March 4, 2014

We thought we'd take a trip to Britain's oldest recorded city, Colchester. Having never been there before, it wasn't easy finding our way around. In fact we got lost twice! We visited the castle first, which wasn't open for visitors. Had a lovely walk around the grounds though. Then we asked someone for directions and ended up the Colchester art... More

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firstsite, Public Relations Manager at Firstsite, responded to this review

Hello, Thanks for your feedback, I'm glad you enjoyed your visit to Colchester. We are excited that our neighbours Colchester Castle will reopen this Friday 2 May, and of course, firstsite has a changing exhibition programme, so when you next visit Colchester make sure you pop in to see both! More

colchester
Top Contributor
100 reviews 100 reviews
7 attraction reviews
52 helpful votes 52 helpful votes
2 of 5 stars Reviewed February 16, 2014

Outside Firstsite is like a scene from Wayne's world ,loads of scruffy skate boarders ,not family friendly at all could be quite intimidating to a lot of people .the building looks quite futuristic ,not at all in keeping with Colchester . Inside two large jet engines art ?????? who knows !! .most of the walls seem bare, we were walking... More

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firstsite, Public Relations Manager at Firstsite, responded to this review

Hello, Thanks for your feedback and I'm sorry to hear you had a bad experience at firstsite. We are working with Colchester Borough Council, who own the building and the surrounding space to work with the skateboarders and other people who use the outside spaces. Some of the young people have worked with firstsite through our Young Art Kommunity (Y.A.K.)... More

Colchester, United Kingdom
Senior Reviewer
6 reviews 6 reviews
4 helpful votes 4 helpful votes
2 of 5 stars Reviewed January 27, 2014

Ok, we made the most of the family workshop last Saturday, I must add that this FREE and the kids seem to enjoy it, however, we were left to our devices to wander around the empty building (and went into the wrong room...a private family gathering!!) the only other people who were there were the yobs from outside who have... More

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firstsite, Public Relations Manager at Firstsite, responded to this review

Hello Daren, Thanks for your feedback, I'm sorry you didn't enjoy your visit to firstsite. We are working with Colchester Borough Council, who own the building and the surrounding space to work with the skateboarders and other people who use the outside spaces. Some of the young people have worked with firstsite through our Young Art Kommunity (Y.A.K.) group, and... More

Brightlingsea, United Kingdom
2 reviews
1 helpful vote 1 helpful vote
2 of 5 stars Reviewed January 26, 2014

Made the trip from Brightlingsea last week, easy and straightforward to get there, but when we got there what was there to see? Not a lot. Not a very warm welcome, staff a but cold and surly, didn't seem happy at all, and then such odd exhibitions and artwork. I didnt follow it at all and cant imagine that we... More

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firstsite, Public Relations Manager at Firstsite, responded to this review

Hello Jason, Thanks for your feedback, and sorry you didn't have a good experience during your visit to firstsite. We aim to have specially trained Gallery Assistants to provide a warm welcome to everyone, so I can only apologise that this is not the welcome you received. The exhibitions change regularly, the summer exhibition opens on 14 May (a 40-year... More

Colchester, United Kingdom
Reviewer
4 reviews 4 reviews
1 helpful vote 1 helpful vote
1 of 5 stars Reviewed January 25, 2014

Was going to visit the firstsite toady thinking well why not I live in colchester see what the fuss is about. What did I find when I got there, some sort of gang warfare had started outside and there were police cars dispersing the crowds of 14 year old Al capones. Way to go councillors what a shinig light this... More

Was this review helpful? Yes 1
firstsite, Public Relations Manager at Firstsite, responded to this review

Hi Michael, We're sorry you didn't enjoy your recent visit to firstsite. The area outside is managed by Colchester Borough Council and we continue to work with them to resolve any issues of anti-social behaviour and I hope your experience is the exception to the norm. The exhibitions change quarterly, so if you didn't like the current show we hope... More

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