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Address: High Street | Lewis Gardens, Colchester CO1 1JH, England
Phone Number: +44 1206 577067
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Today
10:00 am - 5:00 pm
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Hours:
Tue - Sun 10:00 am - 5:00 pm
Description:

Firstsite is a visual arts organisation based in Colchester, Essex....

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.

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TripAdvisor Reviewer Highlights

Read all 121 reviews
Visitor rating
  • 25
    Excellent
  • 28
    Very good
  • 18
    Average
  • 16
    Poor
  • 34
    Terrible
Lovely building but could exhibit much more

The building provides a nice space for exhibiting, but seems sparsely used. There were two exhibitions, one on sound and sights of theatre, ( a bit to off the wall for my tastes... read more

3 of 5 starsReviewed 3 weeks ago
Andy E
,
Colchester, United Kingdom
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121 Reviews from our TripAdvisor Community

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Colchester, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
10 reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed yesterday NEW

I love the building itself and it's a great addition to Colchester's arts scene. Many interesting events.

Helpful?
Thank Clare P
billericay
Level Contributor
74 reviews
10 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 67 helpful votes
1 of 5 stars Reviewed 2 weeks ago

First impression was good, 3 receptionists greeting you. Half a dozen gallery staff dressed in black milling around with a vibrate café. However, entering the empty void of the gallery a large TV screen playing a constant loop of 3 girls whaling on a spinning platform. The sound was distorted due to damaged speakers. A few feet away was a... More 

Helpful?
1 Thank martinryder1956
2 reviews
1 of 5 stars Reviewed 2 weeks ago via mobile

This is the biggest waste of £25 million I have ever seen. They could have built a whole new leisure complex and have change left over to start filling in all the pot holes in our roads!

Helpful?
Thank Rubiks16
Colchester, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
111 reviews
22 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 110 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed 3 weeks ago

The building provides a nice space for exhibiting, but seems sparsely used. There were two exhibitions, one on sound and sights of theatre, ( a bit to off the wall for my tastes and comprehension), the other on James Dodds, a local artist focusing on boats, (more to my taste and well presented). Entry is by voluntary donation, there's a... More 

Helpful?
Thank Andy E
Colchester, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
27 reviews
6 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 5 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed 3 weeks ago

This attraction has had a fair bit of stick since it first opened, much of it well deserved. Anthony Roberts really worked hard as interim director and pulled it up by the scruff of its golden neck. He made a terrific impact, but it can be so easily lost. That said, this attraction is now more welcoming and accessible to... More 

Helpful?
Thank Brown N
Colchester, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
41 reviews
8 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 23 helpful votes
2 of 5 stars Reviewed 3 weeks ago

Art needs critics to survive and generate conversation. Apart from the excellent James Dodds Wood to Water exhibit I am silent!

Helpful?
Thank EWTG1
sussex
Level Contributor
177 reviews
44 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 78 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed 4 weeks ago

As an architect I can say this £28m building seems more to do with the architect's ego than a useful purpose. Reviews wonder about the unnecessary high curved walls not suited for many art works and local opinion seems quite anti. Contemporary art galleries can work (suggest visits to Margate, Eastbourne and Nottingham.) Apart from some boats and a strange... More 

Helpful?
Thank christy21040
Level Contributor
13 reviews
4 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 7 helpful votes
2 of 5 stars Reviewed 4 weeks ago via mobile

We visited Firstsite and despite hearing some very negative things about it before hand went with very open minds. Mostly we were disappointed by the lack of artwork - there were only three exhibitions and they were nice but it felt like they were completely spaced out. It lacks atmosphere as it was so empty. The cafe seemed pretty utilitarian... More 

Helpful?
Thank Qwertyuiop321
Chelmsford, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
7 reviews
4 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 4 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed December 28, 2015 via mobile

Loved it here, the exhibition was very interesting lovely day out to Colchester and it's right in town too so was convenient to get there and also could go get a bite to eat after! Very clean and accessible :)

Helpful?
Thank hlanders87
Colchester, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
5 reviews
4 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 7 helpful votes
1 of 5 stars Reviewed December 15, 2015

The blank space hereon so completely summarises the facility and the interesting detail is the exit sign.

Helpful?
4 Thank Chris G

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Typical questions asked:
  • Do I have to buy a ticket for my infant?
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  • Is there a restaurant or café onsite?