The SLG opened to the public in May 1891 to “bring art to the people of south London”. Today the SLG comprises the original South London Gallery building and the former Peckham Road Fire Station, an artist-designed garden and Art Block, a creative space on Sceaux Gardens estate for local children and families.
Admission to the SLG is free for everyone throughout the year.
The beautiful Victorian gallery space on the ground floor, completed in January 1891 and designed by Godfrey Pinkerton, is still in use today. The original marquetry floor in the main gallery (not on public display) was designed by artist and illustrator Walter Crane and bears the inscription “The source of art is in the life of a people”.
In June 2010, the SLG almost doubled in size with the opening of the Matsudaira Wing, Clore Studio and Fox Garden, designed by 6a architects. The expansion created additional gallery space, an artists’ flat, café, the Fox Garden and the Clore Studio for education projects and events on the footprint of the original lecture hall, which was destroyed in World War II.
2018 marks the next significant phase in the Gallery’s history. Working again with 6a architects, the SLG restored the former Peckham Road Fire Station to create a new contemporary art centre, which opened to the public in September 2018.
Click here for more information about the history of the SLG and the Peckham Road Fire Station.