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Collections Overview

**Please note that part of the East End Gallery is closed for maintenance**


The Collections at the Sainsbury Centre for Visual Arts represent some of the most remarkable works of art assembled in the UK. The Robert and Lisa Sainsbury Collection features work spanning 5,000 years of human creativity.

The presentation of art from across time and place continues to inspire and surprise and uniquely presents art as a universal global phenomenon.

The Robert and Lisa Sainsbury Collection

Permanently displayed in the Living Area Gallery, the collection includes major holdings of art from Oceania, Africa, the Americas, Asia, the ancient Mediterranean cultures of Egypt, Greece and Rome, Medieval Europe, and including a significant number of works acknowledged as seminal examples of European modern art. Pablo Picasso, Edgar Degas, Francis Bacon, Jacob Epstein, Henry Moore, Alberto Giacometti and Amedeo Modigliani are all represented in the collection.

The Lisa Sainsbury Ceramics Collection

Although not formally part of the Robert and Lisa Sainsbury Collection, the Lisa Sainsbury Ceramics Collection represents a major collection of 20th century studio ceramics, including a significant body of work by Lucie Rie and Hans Coper.

The Sainsbury Abstract Collection

The Sainsbury Abstract Collection includes paintings from the post second world war Ecole de Paris with a strong preference for lyrical abstraction and Tachism, art movements that flourished in France from 1945 to 1960. Notable artists included in the collection are Jean Fautrier, Charles Maussion and Mubin Orhon.

The Anderson Collection of Art Nouveau

Alongside the Robert and Lisa Sainsbury Collection sits another principal collection; The Anderson Collection of Art Nouveau, donated in 1978 by Sir Colin Anderson, a close friend of Sir Robert and Lady Sainsbury. The collection represents artists working across a range of disciplines and materials such as glassware and furniture, metalware and jewellery. The collection includes pieces by leading exponents of Art Nouveau such as Louis Comfort Tiffany, Emile Gallé and René Lalique.

The University Collection of Abstract and Constructivist Art, Design and Architecture

The University Collection of Abstract and Constructivist Art, Design and Architecture was established by the University in 1968. This Collection concentrates on the non-objective, constructive and concrete art movements of the 20th century and the related fields of architecture and design, such as the English Vorticists, the Russian Suprematists and Constructivists, the Dutch De Stijl Group and the German Bauhaus School.