Art2c in Manchester – BeesBlogs Round up of Art2c in November

Artc2c in Manchester

There’s an amazing amount of Art2c in Manchester this November. With a new exhibition ‘Is Seeing Believing’ at Saul Hay Gallery, Lemn Sissay announcing the Manchester Histories Festival 2018Castlefield Gallery have their latest Launch Pad exhibition. Artist Kate Collins talks about her career at Contemporary Six, More news of Paradise Works, the new artist-led studio’s in Salford, Cecily Brown’s Shipwreck Drawings at The Whitworth, who also celebrate their Millionth Visitor since reopening in 2015.

Art2c – ‘Is Seeing Believing’ Part One – Mike Chavez-Dawson, Susan Gunn & Nickanor

                           Castlefields Saul Hay Gallery 17 November – 26 November 2017


Art2c in Manchester
Susan Gunn Divided Ground Bombay Orange 2015 2016


An interesting exhibition starts at Castlefield based gallery Saul Hay. Titled ‘Is Seeing Believing – Part One’ it features work by Mike Chavez-Dawson, Susan Gunn and Israel based artist Nikanor.

“I was drawing people’s attention to the fact that art is a mirage. A mirage, exactly like an oasis appears in the desert. It is very beautiful until, of course, you are dying of thirst.” Marcel Duchamp, Paris-Express, 1964

Art2c in Manchester
Double Trouble Part 2 (2020 Vision, Duchamp), 2017

So starts this latest work in Chavez-Dawson’s homage to Marcel Duchamp. Following his successful Fountain, fountain, series at Manchester Art Gallery and Bury Museum and Art Gallery, this new work shifts to the eyes of Duchamp.  The focus being the eyes for both Chavez-Dawson and Israel based artist Nikanor. (Nikanor is the artist name of a once off-line Jerusalem based designer and contemporary artist.)

Art2c in Manchester
Innocent Child, A Gaze From Above, A View From Within, 2017

Created by Manchester-based artist Mike ChavezDawson ‘Letter Box (To the Right, Duchamp’s Eyes)’ can be seen as a piece that encapsulates the observational interplay in Is Seeing Believing? – between the three artists involved and the works on show. The result is an exhibition in which signification evolves under the gaze of its audience. Because although it has been drawn onto a chalkboard, ‘Letter Box (To the Right, Duchamp’s Eyes)’ is, in many different ways, a reflection: of Duchamp’s gaze, of a decision by fellow exhibitor Nikanor to develop his practice by isolating the eyes in the cut outs for which he has gained reputation – and, consequently, of several other pairs of eyes in the exhibition

Art2c in Manchester
Non-View (Blindman_ Duchamp), 2017

Reflection here, then, is not simply imitation – it’s a route to reflection. Chavez-Dawson’s ‘Letter Box (To the Right, Duchamp’s Eyes)’ and Nikanor’s ‘Sight of the Sage (Rabbi Eyes – Chasam Sofer), 2017’ to ‘The Poets Gaze (Cohen’s Stare), 2017’ reflect upon each other as well as gazing out at the work of Susan Gunn, whose non-figurative canvasses themselves invite consideration by their contrasting absence of imagery, their mysteriously fractured terrain. However, Chavez-Dawson and Nikanor’s works look different, and look differently: ‘The Performer’s Look (The King, Elvis), 2017’ by Nikanor may take shape from polished brass, which refracts the world it faces – but the eyes in the image are those of a man well-documented as having poor eyesight in his lifetime. Chavez-Dawson, meanwhile, has chosen to evoke Duchamp – whose legacy is one of continual reinterpretation, and whose most famous work has uncertain origins – in liquid chalk. Looked at over time, this material will be subject to shifts and disappearances, as though both the man and his outlook were mercurial.



Art2c in Manchester
The Poets Gaze (Cohen’s Stare), 2017


Castlefield Gallery Launch Pad – ‘An Exchange of Sorts’

For everything that is received, something must be given in return.

Preview 16th November 6-8pm- Exhibition continues until 26th November

Curated by CG Associates member Will Marshall, ‘An Exchange of Sorts’ was selected Dr Michael Birchall, Senior Lecturer in Exhibition Studies at Liverpool John Moores University and Curator of Public Practice at Tate Liverpool, and Castlefield Gallery’s Curator Matthew Pendergast, from submissions by CG Associates. The exhibition will include work by Connor Brazier, Robyn Nichol, Sid & Jim, Emily Simpson, and

An Exchange of Sorts presents new work made in response to Marshall’s invitation to consider the concept of ‘exchange’, particularly in relation to the production and exhibiting of art. The five artists were asked to look at the various elements involved in ‘exchanges’, such as money, materials, time, art, exposure, favours and labour.

All the work in the show will be on sale to purchase, however none will be available for money. Instead the artists have chosen other tradable currencies, which they feel represents a fair exchange for an original artwork. This could be a house, a horse or a cheese pasty.


Art2c in Manchester – AN EVENING WITH… KATE COLLINS  Contemporary Six

Art2c in Manchester
Kate Collins, ‘The Oldest Tree’, Tempera


‘An Evening With…’ is a new monthly event in which Contemporary Six invite a leading artist into the Gallery for an intimate talk on the inspirations and artistic techniques they have acquired throughout their career.

The lustre painter Kate Collins will be presenting the next talk in the Gallery on the 23rd November from 6-7pm. With a career spanning over forty years, she has experimented in many different mediums yet Kate’s work is distinctively individual in its fairy-tale subject matter.

If you wish to join us please bear in mind there will be a limited number of places available, so please contact us on 0161 835 2666 to secure your place!

Art2c in Manchester -2018 Manchester Histories Festival announcement

Thursday 16th November from 6-8pm at Manchester Art Gallery with special guest Lemn Sissay MBE.

Art2c in Manchester
Lemn Sissay – Courtesy Aida Muluneh


Unique amongst histories festivals in the UK for working in collaborative partnerships with organisations, communities, individuals; the Greater-Manchester wide bi-annual festival returns for its 5th installment from 7-11 June 2018 with the theme protest, democracy and freedom of speech, and an all new Festival format.


At the special event on Thursday 16 November; part of UK Parliament Week, alongside our special guest for the evening – poet, author and broadcaster Lemn Sissay MBE, Chancellor of the University of Manchester, we are also excited that Manchester-based electronic music promoters, Annex Agency and Project 13 will give a taster of work they will be producing for Manchester Histories Festival 2018 when they present DJ’s Acre and Afrodeutsche . Poet, playwright and performer Louise Wallwein will perform; DJ, author and creative consultant to Manchester Histories, Dave Haslam will announce details of events to mark the 150th Anniversary of the formation of the TUC (Trades Union Congress) in Manchester and Salford in 1868 for Manchester Histories Festival 2018; and artist Lauren Sagar whose new work The March of the Artists is inspired by the 1817 March of the Blanketeers – when around 5,000 Lancashire weavers set off from Manchester to London to petition the Prince Regent over the desperate economic hardship faced by the textile industry in Lancashire. The Blanketeers formed part of a series of protests and calls for reform that culminated in the Peterloo massacre and the theatrical piece, The March of the Artists will form part of a whole day of debating in the 2018 Festival.

Art2c in Manchester
Dave Haslam


As well as more guests and special announcements, details will be given of how everyone can get involved in the Manchester Histories Festival 2018 – with applications open to submit events for Manchester Histories Festival 2018, Manchester Celebration & Fun Day, Manchester Central Library  2018, and the Soapbox project at All Saints Park; a partnership between Manchester Histories and Manchester Metropolitan University.


Speeches 6:30pm

Venue: Manchester Art Gallery, Mosley Street, Manchester M2 3JL



Thomas Bell Ale

Guests will also have the opportunity to sample a limited edition beer by artist Magnus Quaife. With the Portland Basin Museum and thanks to support from Arts and Heritage, Magnus has been researching Gartside’s brewery, once a major employer in the Tameside area and brewing the very special beer with Millstone Brewery.

Art2c in Manchester – Cecily Brown: Shipwreck drawings

The Whitworth

Art2c in Manchester
Image: Cecily Brown, Shipwreck drawings, Courtesy Thomas Dane Limited

This is an exhibition of an extraordinary series of drawings by Cecily Brown, of wrecked ships and their passengers. Brown’s practice of painterly interrogation of an existing image, here takes on one of the most celebrated paintings in the world; Gericault’s The Raft of the Medusa, 1819. Also taking inspiration from other Old Masters, notably Delacroix, Brown re-examines human presence, figuration and representations of maritime tragedy throughout history.

17 November – 15 April 2018

Event: Cecily Brown in conversation

Thursday 16 November, 5-6pm
Free, no need to book

Cecily Brown and Senior Curator Sam Lackey will discuss her this new series of Shipwreck drawings, exploring Brown’s use of source images for her paintings – which in this case includes the much feted painting Géricault’s Raft of the Medusa.


The Whitworth Celebrates its Millionth Visitor since its reopening

Whilst not a November opening the Whitworth is justifiably proud at having received its millionth visitor. The Whitworth is always a pleasure to visit, especially in its stunning location, and provides fantastic exhibitions for Manchester’s visitors and art lovers.


Art2c in Manchester
Fareda Khan, Head of Special Project and Millionth visitor Farrzana Begum Credit Stephen Devine.


The University of Manchester’s Whitworth welcomed its millionth visitor since reopening to the public on the 14 February 2015. Farrzana Begum, a sixteen year old student from Fallowfield, Manchester, was greeted by Fareda Khan, Head of Special Projects at the Whitworth and received a Raqib Shaw print, a catalogue by Raqs Media Collective titled ‘Twilight Language’ as well as complimentary tea and cake for two in the Whitworth café.



Art2c in Manchester – Paradise Works, artist-led studio welcomes over 1,200 visitors in its first week.


Last week saw the much anticipated official opening of the brand new Paradise Works artist-run studios and project space in Salford.

Artists Hilary Jack and Lucy Harvey have driven development of the new Paradise Works studios in response to the crisis in artist studio provision across the region.

The ambition of the artists behind the new Paradise Works is to create a sustainable urban model for artist-led activity within the growing arts ecology across the city-region, and are working in partnership with developers Urban Splash with support from Arts Council England.


There was much excitement from the city’s creative community, members of the public, council leaders, and business’ to get a first look inside the new Paradise Works; home to 30 emerging and established contemporary artists working across creative disciplines over two floors, a film screening space, and a large gallery space featuring a specially commissioned entrance area designed by Manchester-based contemporary design studio and Paradise Works members Winter & Kurth.


At the launch party on Saturday 28th October and in front of a packed crowd Paradise Works co-founder, Hilary Jack; Chairman – Urban Splash, Tom Bloxham MBE; Maria Percival of Arts Council England; and Salford City Mayor Paul Dennett all spoke of the importance of arts and heritage to the region and the importance of artists to communities – to massive applause.


Natasha Howes – Senior Curator at Manchester Art Gallery said: “Paradise Works is an amazing addition to the arts ecology in Manchester. Two floors of a historic building have been transformed into fantastic spaces for artists to work. The large area for exhibitions hosts Politics of Paradise, a group show with well selected pieces by the studio artists, including some large scale installations.

“Well done to Hilary Jack, Lucy Harvey and their team on such a huge achievement – not only in terms of initiating the studios but on realising them so successfully. I look forward to coming back.”

Ian Tabbron – Senior Relationship Manager, Arts Council England said: “This launch demonstrates the range and quality of the work being produced by the artists at Paradise Works. We look forward to supporting the group as it grows and prospers in Salford.”

Tom Bloxham MBE, Chairman – Urban Splash, who has spoken of the importance of artists working in cities and the impact they have on the ecology, and his commitment to supporting Paradise Works in the long term said: “I’m delighted to see the wonderful Paradise Works open.

“Urban Splash has a long history of supporting artist initiatives across the country; from Ocean Studios in Plymouth and the S1 Artspace at Park Hill in Sheffield, to exhibitions within our spaces – the Cow Parade in Manchester to the new contemporaries in Liverpool; we’ve supported literally hundreds of installations and exhibitions within our developments.

“Paradise Works is a great new addition to Irwell Riverside; as our new modular houses take shape and new residents move in, the area is beginning to become one of the most interesting in Greater Manchester.

“We wish Paradise Works the best of luck and congratulate them on doing an amazing job establishing this artist collective in the heart of the city.”


The inaugural exhibition The Politics of Paradise was curated in response to the new studios and exploring historic and contemporary notions of “paradise”, and to the utopian vision often attributed to, and compounded by artists. The Politics of Paradise featured works by 25 of the studio artists including; Mallum, peri – limited edition artworks by artist Alyson Olson, which offered visitors a chance to buy fruit preserves made from produce gathered from the contaminated wasteland sited beside Paradise Works; One Square Mile – a film by PW member Chris Paul Daniels and artist Sam Meech which employs absurdist methodologies to explore environments, architecture and communities in Salford; and Working Towards a Goldilocks Society, a series of miniature chocolate houses by artist Claire Tindale inspired by the utopian aspirations of George Cadbury whose model village Bournville promoted wellbeing and community within his workforce. The Politics of Paradise exhibition remains open by appointment to Thursday 26th November.