Spring weather might be dragging its feet a little, but the world of exhibitions isn’t slowing down with new shows popping up everywhere to greet the new season.
Let’s start with Familiar Phantoms by the artist duo Larissa Sansour and Søren Lind at the Whitworth – the film is an intimate journey through Sanssour’s personal history and a piece that asks questions about collective memory and the very nature of remembering. An absolute gem, this art film is not to be missed.
There is a more conceptual feel to a lot of the recently opened shows, even when it’s realised through painting or sculpture. Painting, An Unending from Parham Ghalamdar at HOME incorporates rebellion against an oppressive government, graffiti culture, references to Piero de la Francesca and experimentation with materials all in one.
You can find a less political form of artistic rebellion at Greig Burgoyne’s exhibition, the one who was standing apart from me at the Lowry. The artist focuses on the absences and all that is not immediately visible in both his own practice and in examining the world of the great painter of the North, LS Lowry.
Jo Clements takes a closer look at how we learn, with the concept of knowledge itself being a key theme in the artist’s new show at the Whitaker: Everyone In This Room Is Connected To Everyone In This Room.
Genetic Material by Rosie Edwards at Cross Lane Projects is a minimalist investigation of form and material. The artist often takes mundane, domestic objects as starting points for her sculptures which are as much about the final shape as the process of being sculpted.
Here are our picks
Familiar Phantoms at The Whitworth, Manchester, Until 21 May 2023, free entry - Visit now
The Whitworth welcomes a brand new work by one of the great artist duos of our time: Larissa Sansour and Søren Lind’s Familiar Phantoms is a major new commission and perhaps Sansour’s most intimate film to date.
Painting, An Unending at HOME Manchester, Manchester, Until 4 June 2023, free entry - Visit now
Strap in for an immersive journey into conceptual painting, ceramics and animation all made with the help of AI, addressing themes of migration and belonging.
Jo Clements: Everyone In This Room Is Connected To Everyone In This Room at The Whitaker, Until 7 May 2023, free entry - Visit now
Jo Clements investigates the nature of knowledge and learning based on her extensive research, with silky sculptures, videos and just a little hint of mischief.
Genetic Material at Cross Lane Projects, Cumbria, Until 22 April 2023, free entry - Visit now
Blurb: Check out the new display of minimalist, geometric sculptures by the Mark Tanner Sculpture Award winner Rosie Edwards in her new show Genetic Material.
Practise Till We Meet at esea contemporary, Manchester, Until 28 May 2023, free entry - Visit now
Adjusting to life in a new place is challenging to say the least. Practice Till We Meet explores the complexity of feelings and circumstances that it comes with, through the work of five artists and two collectives.
Nick Jordan: Natural Interaction at HOME Manchester, Manchester, Until 4 June 2023, free entry - Visit now
From cities to forests and wetlands, Nick Jordan’s trilogy of films touches on environmental diversity, mycelium networks and rare genetic conditions.
(Un)Defining Queer at The Whitworth, Manchester, Until 3 December 2023, free entry - Visit now
The Whitworth’s major exhibition ‘(Un)Defining Queer’ takes a queer lens to examine what ‘queer’ really means today, through an fantastic collection of classical and contemporary artists’ work.
Private Parts at Thackray Museum of Medicine, Leeds, Until 11 May 2023, from £8.95 - Book now
The colourful display ranges from personal stories of individual journeys of people discovering their gender identities to discussions of pleasure and sexual health. Private Parts a safe space for visitors to learn and discuss the complexities of these traditionally taboo topics.
Hew Locke: The Procession at BALTIC Centre for Contemporary Art, Newcastle, Until 11 June 2023, free entry - Visit now
Hew Locke’s grand-scale installation is filled with intricate details that will make you want to spend more and more time with the piece to discover as much as possible.
The Art of the Potter: Ceramics and Sculpture from 1930 to Now at The Hepworth Wakefield, Wakefield, Until 20 January 2024, from £0.00 - Book now
The medium of ceramics and clay works is varied and complex – Hepworth Wakefield’s new show emphasises how the style and artists’ approach has been changing over the past 100 years.
Under a Hot Sun at Walker Art Gallery, City Centre, Until 30 April 2023, free entry - Visit now
Visit John Moores Painting Prize winner Kathryn Maple’s beautiful exhibition of new works centred on the theme of environmental changes.
Magic in this Country: Hepworth, Moore and the Land at The Hepworth Wakefield, Wakefield, Until 31 January 2024, £10, with concessions - Book now
See the landscapes of Yorkshire and Cornwall through the eyes of some of the greatest sculptors of all time in this captivating new exhibition.
Samra Mayanja: The Living and the Stale at The Tetley, Until 4 June 2023, free entry - Visit now
As an artist in love with words, Samra Mayanja explores the potential of poetry in her brand new exhibition at The Tetley.
Hannah Starkey at The Hepworth Wakefield, Wakefield, Until 1 May 2023, from £1.00 - Book now
Starkey’s powerful compositions take centre stage in this thorough survey of the photographer’s oeuvre, from the moment of her graduation 20 years ago where she was first noticed, until now as she continues to produce images that focus on women.
Althea McNish: Colour is Mine at The Whitworth, Manchester, Until 23 April 2023, free entry - Visit now
Visit the major retrospective of work by Althea McNish, the first Caribbean designer of international fame, bursting with bold, vibrant designs across textiles, wallpaper and painting.
JMW Turner with Lamin Fofana: Dark Waters at Tate Liverpool, Waterfront, Until 4 June 2023, from £5.00 - Book now
An immersive soundscape enveloping Turner’s masterpieces is sure to be an unforgettable experience, so don’t miss it!
Daniel Arsham: Relics in the Landscape at Yorkshire Sculpture Park, Wakefield, Until 30 September 2023, free entry - Visit now
Daniel Arsham’s “future relics” look perfectly at home in YSP’s green grounds, the artist’s first museum display in the UK.
Dandy Style at Manchester Art Gallery, Chinatown, Until 1 May 2023, free entry - Visit now
Manchester Art Gallery unveils its brand new, dedicated Fashion Gallery with a show exploring men’s style through the ages.
Bury Art Shop, Bury Art Museum, Moss Street, Bury, Greater Manchester, BL9 0DR - Visit now
The perfect place to find gifts, stationery, cards, children’s books and, most importantly, museum souvenirs if you want to take home a little reminder of your visit and the gallery’s wonderful collections.
Experience YBA artist Damien Hirst’s towering and provocative outdoor sculptures at Yorkshire Sculpture Park.
Stop and spend an hour or two with this special creation, nestled within a stand of birch trees beside Yorkshire Sculpture Park’s Upper Lake.
The Pankhurst Centre’s new permanent exhibition offers an intimate glimpse into the lives of the people behind the iconic Pankhurst name.
Whether you have never put pencil to paper or have been honing your artistic skills for years, Bee Creative studio runs life drawing sessions for people of all abilities.
Prepare to get hands-on, with your ears and hearts open, at a new major exhibition exploring the science of music’s mysterious hold over us and how it drives us to create, perform, feel and share.
Visit the BALTIC to experience Jala Wahid’s ‘inferno’, an exploration of Kurdish identity, Britishness and diaspora through the lens of oil.
Experience the folklore, mythologies and history of the landscape of the North East in Baltic’s new group exhibition ‘Hinterlands’.
‘Nothing About Us Without Us’ at PHM explores the history of disabled people’s activism and their ongoing fight for inclusion with a wonderful collection of exhibits brought together for the first time,
Running daily from 2pm, take a closer look at some of the Whitworth Art Gallery’s collection while gaining a better understanding of the context in which the pieces were created.
Spring is making an entrance in live literature land with some extra special festival events, writing walks, online launches and in real life readings from local writers as well as international talent.
We preview the standout classical music events and venues in Manchester and the north.
Get ready for spring and summer with the best restaurants and bars in Manchester and the North.
From indie markets to bit-sized meditation, spoon carving workshops to gallery tours, here are the headlines in the world of tours and activities.