A one-day art festival is set to take over some of Manchester’s most beloved cultural hotspots this summer, showcasing the work of ten Greater Manchester artists and student groups.

Art Assembly 2022 will feature a series of new works centred around the concept of Manchester as an art school and champions culture as part of educational experiences for people from all walks of life.

The event is a collaboration between Art Fund, Castlefield Gallery, HOME, Manchester Art Gallery, the Whitworth and the Manchester College. It will present eight newly co-commissioned and co-created pieces and installations across the city, from established venues to more surprising spots like busy squares, streets, billboards and pavements.

There’ll also be a major multi-format project with artist David Blandy and young artists at Venture Arts. This will be situated throughout the city, exploring how everywhere has the potential to become a place of creative learning and reimagining Manchester 8000 years from now in the form of zine: Lost Eons: Three Worlds. 

Manchester Art Gallery will be the hub of the festival, hosting several of the new works including Respawn by artist Olivia Glasser—featuring videos of children from Plymouth Grove Primary School re-enacting actions that are important to them in childhood and exploring what they’re not allowed to do now that they want to do when adults.

Parham Ghalamdar is collaborating with Art and Design students from The Manchester College to produce large scale paintings on canvas as well as A.I. generated animations and projections inspired by an exploration of the city’s art scene and its hidden gems, while David McFarlane and Raheel Khan are working with young people from Manchester Secondary Pupil Referral Unit to create augmented reality maps, allowing visitors to explore the city’s hidden gems.

Maya Chowdhry is working with students studying MA Fine Art and MPhil courses from Manchester School of Art to explore ‘space as a gift’ by creating pop-up plinth installations inside Manchester Art Gallery and in St Peter’s Square as platforms for performance art.

Stencilled botanical designs will decorate city centre streets, inspired by the 18th and 19th century working-class botanist societies in Manchester as part of a collaboration between fashion students from The Manchester College and artists Anna FC Smith and Helen Mather, and Poster designs exploring climate emergency, created by students from Abraham Moss Community School with artist Sam Owen Hall will feature on outdoor sites between the school and the city centre.

Sally Gilford’s commission with the University of Salford’s School of Art, Media & Creative Technology students tackles women’s issues not often discussed within the curriculum, and a guerrilla photography exhibition will grow throughout the day-long festival and displayed on construction site hoardings as part of Robert Parkinson’s collaboration with The Manchester College photography students.

For more information, visit the Art Fund website.

Sat 18 Jun, Various venues
Bradley Lengden
Published on:
Tue 5 Apr 2022