Criteria for a new home for the MMAC

In seeking the new home, the Management Committee of the Methodist Modern Art Collection (MMAC) wishes to engage with a potential partner in a number of key ways. We hope you find this a helpful set of criteria and look forward to discussing them with you. These criteria have been drawn up to assist potential new homes in thinking about the needs of the Collection and how we might successfully work together across a range of areas of activity. We look forward to hearing from you about what has attracted you to the Collection, your own visions and goals and any alignments, and how you feel we could work together in the following areas. 


Access, Learning and Interpretation

  • Ensuring that an appreciation and understanding of Our Calling and the mission priorities of the Methodist Church inform the way in which we interpret the Collection
  • Sharing interpretations of Christian faith in response to the Collection, adhering to our Mission and Interpretation Policy
  • Aiming to encourage dialogue between peoples of faith and none, to explore spirituality in all its forms with our audiences
  • Creating opportunities to make lasting community impact locally and regionally, engaging with broad communities, and with a range of age groups, highlighting the contemporary relevance of the Collection
  • Accessing learning/educational staff who can contribute to thought-provoking, inclusive interpretations of the Collection when it is on display and on tour
  • Establishing an educational learning and wellbeing programme, attracting audiences throughout the year in line with our Audience Development Plan, including connecting with hard-to-reach audiences on the economic margins of society and young people in particular
  • Harnessing the potential of volunteer support to create meaningful volunteer experiences around the programming of events inspired by the Collection
  • Maximising the potential of the MMAC to become part of a multi-disciplinary cultural hub, attracting funding for artistic residencies, responding to the Collection though literature, music and dance
  • Prioritising accessibility and ensuring a prominent location to enable access for visitors (including people with disabilities) coming to view the Collection, wherever works from it are on display
  • Acknowledging our history and the formation of the Collection as and when appropriate, including making our merchandise and guidebooks to the Collection available for sale.


Display and Touring

  • Availability of a well-located, well-appointed, easily accessible exhibition space or spaces
  • Excellent security in gallery spaces where works are displayed
  • Capacity to display permanently at least part of the MMAC, in a space withappropriate environmental conditions and lighting to show highlights from the Collection to best advantage, in line with our Collections Care and Disposal Policy, while facilitating regular touring in line with our Exhibitions Policy
  • Willing to initiate display ideas integrating MMAC works with the new home’s existing/own Collection and in consultation with the Management Committee, to create meaningful dialogues in visual displays
  • Enthusiasm to engage with the Management Committee on a touring programme, which may involve on occasion, the majority of the works being loaned elsewhere
  • Capacity to deal with additional, smaller and focused exhibition packages being sent to churches and venues as part of the annual touring programme
  • Input from curatorial and learning/education staff, as and when appropriate, to display, research and interpret the works, including collaborating with inter-disciplinary creatives who can spearhead ground-breaking community engagement/public art initiatives, embedding the Collection in local communities
  • Skills, capacity and commitment to ensure that the MMAC is well publicised and information about the Collection and programming is given a high profile at the new home venue ensuring that local and regional audiences are aware of its presence
  • Regular opening hours for public access to the display/s
  • Potential to enable MMAC to contribute to an organisation that could become (or is already) a cultural destination for a region/area, helping to develop tourism and regeneration further in nearby local communities



  • Opportunities for satisfactory and stimulating local and regional partnerships, working ecumenically with Methodist and other Christian churches, and across faith communities, to build relationships and understanding
  • Opportunities for satisfactory and stimulating local and regional partnerships with arts organisations, such as annual festivals
  • Working with contemporary visual, literary and performance artists and their networks to ensure vibrant and imaginative responses to the Collection
  • Establishing university partnerships (to include theological and art historical/history of collecting research) and for the Collection to be available for students to be inspired by it, as well as it being used in teaching and at undergraduate and graduate research level
  • Building relationships with schools and other educational and youth organisations, ensuring young people are aware of and engage with the Collection in the local area and region
  • Working together with the new home to create a dynamic partnership, which can leverage funding to achieve the ambitions of the host institution and the MMAC Management Committee.


Handling and Storage

  • Suitable secure space for storage and handling of all the works (under environmental and security conditions to meet Museum Accreditation standards) and suitable storage for the substantial transit cases and temporary display ‘walls’
  • Access for the public to the works in store is desirable, for research purposes or when considering hosting an exhibition of the Collection (which would ideally mean the works being kept on roller racking)
  • Space to inspect works for conservation checking, handling and packing
  • Potential to buy into wider conservation and technical support services, such as art handling, run by the host institution, or a plan that would enable such basic collections care services to be brought-in, as and when necessary
  • Straightforward vehicular access to the storage area for the dispatch and return of works from touring exhibition, taking into account the substantial crates in which the paintings travel


Documentation/Movement Control

  • Access to a suitable Collections Management System (currently the Collection uses MODES as its CMS) and skilled persons to transfer data about the 50 or more works into a compatible system to ensure the highest levels of documentation of the Collection
  • Persons to ensure all movements are recorded on CMS, which will be regularly updated
  • Public-facing portal, which will be regularly updated and link to the Methodist Church website, ensuring that the Collection can be accessed online easily via the new home’s website


Infrastructure Support/Financial Arrangements

  • The new home institution must be able to demonstrate financial viability and sustainability to the satisfaction of the Methodist Church (The annual accounts/financial report year to August 2021 for the Methodist Church are available here)
  • Expectation of including MMAC aims and strategic goals in longer-term planning of the host institution, working to a mutually-agreed Memorandum of Understanding and Service Level Agreement (which would be based on these criteria). This would be supported by a complementary work plan, which is annually reviewed, and all underpinned by any necessary financial agreement for the dedicated services required from the new home by MMAC
  • MMAC Management Committee expect to work closely with the new home institution to leverage external, third-party funding together in a clear approach to a joint Fundraising Strategy
  • MMAC Management Committee envisages being integrated into a new relationship and way of working with the new home partner, to ensure clear lines of communication and to monitor the workplan together. with consideration for whatever host governance is in place
  • Ability to support research into the Collection, encouraging academic partnership, fostering imaginative approaches and the production of publications shedding new light on the Collection
  • Opportunities to become included in appropriate networks in the regional area of the new home to enhance awareness of the Collection and foster collaborative working
  • Ability to support the MMAC Management Committee’s long-term ambition to be in a new home institution that allows us to apply for Arts Council Museum Accreditation or includes the Collection it its own return