Without banging the diversity drum, Manchester can pride itself on being a highly multicultural city. And this autumn, two major festivals give us the chance to celebrate the fact. Brainchild of the critically-acclaimed author and prize-winning peace activist, Qaisra Shahraz, MACFEST prepares to launch for the first time across multiple venues with ten-days of art, literature, music, film, food and heritage relating to the Muslim diaspora. And Asia Triennial Manchester returns for its fourth edition, shining a spotlight on artists from South Korea, Japan, Thailand, China, Sri Lanka and the UK.
Design Manchester (another of our festival favourites) is also around the corner, this year presenting a bold programme of events intended to ‘DISRUPT!’ – examining how design can be used to alter the status-quo and address some of the biggest political, social and environmental challenges facing us today.
Looking beyond the city’s borders, we’re very excited to travel to Sheffield to catch LIQUID CRYSTAL DISPLAY – Site Gallery‘s inaugural exhibition following a three-year-long major expansion and redevelopment programme. And Liverpool, where Between You and Me and Everything Else at Walker Art Gallery offers an intriguing new angle on one of art’s most enduring genres…
Here are our picks
The brainchild of Manchester’s resident critically-acclaimed author and prize-winning peace activist, Qaisra Shahraz; MACFEST is a new 10-day celebration of art, literature, music, film, food and heritage relating to the Muslim diaspora, which will open in venues across the city this November.
Curated by Newport-born artist Leo Fitzmaurice, ‘Between You and Me Everything Else’ at Walker Art Gallery in Liverpool is an invitation to approach the age-old genre of portraiture through fresh, curious eyes.
This autumn, learn about the inspiring life of Miss Adelaide Watt – an independent and powerful Victorian woman who fought the forces of modernity to preserve Speke Hall and all its treasures for generations to come.
Site Gallery, 1 Brown Street, Sheffield, Yorkshire, S1 2BS - Visit now
After a three-year long £1.7 million expansion and redevelopment project, Sheffield’s leading international contemporary art space reopens this Autumn – and everyone’s very excited to see what the new Site Gallery holds in store.
The Bell Tree by award winning contemporary artist Serena Korda responds to England’s alternative history of fairy-tale folklore, the ancient forest at Speke Hall and the legacy of hidden rebellion that surrounds the historic Tudor home.
SUBI 수비 at Castlefield Gallery explores the long process of cultural and generational exchange that underpins the art of pottery and ceramics – one of the world’s oldest crafts – as an integral part of the way that humans create and communicate the world in which we live.
Beautiful world, where are you? at Exchange Flags, 14 July–28 October 2018, free entry - Visit now
Before the summer draws to a close, make sure you get out and explore Liverpool Biennial’s ever-popular programme of outdoor public art commissions and works presented in unusual spaces throughout the city.
Part of Liverpool Biennial 2018, Beautiful world, where are you? at Tate Liverpool presents work by a group of artists predominantly originating from America, Australia and Canada, dealing with issues of indigenous identity and the often-violent legacies of colonialism.
To mark its 250th birthday, the Royal Academy of Arts in London has launched a nationwide programme of exhibitions, displays, tours, talks and one-off events. Here we take a look at what’s going on in Salford – home of RA LS Lowry and now a growing independent art scene.
Lest We Forget marks the first instalment of a major new season of exhibitions, music, dance, talks and events at IWM London and IWM North exploring how the First World War has shaped society today.
Explore the story of democracy through a special display of banners that were integral to the women’s suffrage movement, as well as other campaigns for representation at the People’s History Museum.
Encounter objects from one of the world’s greatest archaeological discoveries, spanning almost 1,000 years of Chinese history, at China’s First Emperor and the Terracotta Warriors.
The first major retrospective of work by the radical Manchester artist and feminist campaigner, Annie Swynnerton, opens in nearly 100 years at Manchester Art Gallery.
Exchanges at The Whitworth sets art and artists together, sometimes in harmony, sometimes in opposition – always with insight and intention.
This latest exhibition uses the Whitworth’s extensive and significant wallpaper collection to focus on how Imperial attitudes to people are reflected in wallpaper.
What do public museums collect and why? Which works become highlights, and which lie forgotten in storage? Speech Acts: Reflection-Imagination-Repetition at Manchester Art Gallery considers how public museums reflect and shape our collective imagination.
As the national museum of democracy, the People’s History Museum’s headline 2018 exhibition, Represent! Voices 100 Years On, will be guided and informed by the notion of representation itself.
Step into a digital waterful, human-sized scanner and more in a major new exhibition of digital art created by the Lumen Prize.
Salford Museum & Art Gallery and Ordsall Hall delve into their collections to present a two-part exhibition featuring significant prints, drawings and sculptures by former Royal Academicians as part of a nationwide programme marking the institution’s 250th birthday.
More spoken word nights are emerging to join our favourite regulars, there are lots of launches and one-offs and workshops and conferences and even walking tours, and tickets are selling like hot cakes for Manchester Literature Festival, the Rochdale Literature & Ideas Festival and Chester Literature Festival.