Keep a keen eye on the billboards around Manchester in the days ahead, as a special public exhibition of young people’s art goes up all over the city.

The collection of 20 photographs and original artworks both celebrate the world around us and look ahead to what’s next as part 42nd Street’s The Future Is Ours Festival, running at the Horsfall Gallery from Fri 22 Oct to Thu 28 Oct.

Winning photographs (some of which are still on show in Selfridges Exchange Square) from the Horsfall Photo Competition 2021, which ran with the theme of ‘My Favourite Place’, are complemented by ten works of art on electronic billboards across the city, delving into the big topics of environmentalism, mental health, and youth perspective.

Creations include a watercolour triptych depicting the environmental collapse through giant flesh-eating frogs, the lyrics to an original song exploring mental wellbeing and a message about seeing the world in colour accompanied by vibrant illustrations.

The work provides a unique way to look at our surroundings and ourselves, says 21-year-old featured poet and artist Juliet Oduro.

“I hope the people who see my work see a bit of themselves in me, and that they feel connected and part of everything. I don’t want people to feel alone. I hope they feel inspired to find an outlet within themselves that can also help other people and create a loving train, a waterfall of inspiration.”

This very public exhibition is accompanied by seven days of more intimate activities at the Horsfall Gallery, with events also being hosted online through its social media pages.

A week-long show of art, music, photography and sculpture runs daily in the gallery (check the 42nd Street website for full details), while the centre’s Twitter and Instagram output runs an exciting schedule of takeovers from the likes of sculptors Kyle and Duggie, poets/designers Ali and Merny, singer songwriters Tiarna and Kate, allegorical watercolorist Randolph and Rachel, and filmmaker/artist Brontë Palmer.

Also at the gallery, Brighter Sound runs open music sessions (25 Oct), Shannon Westacott leads poetry groups (26 Oct), and Jaime-Lee Wainman hosts two art events (27 Oct). Through this tenderly programmed schedule, young people offer light and love on subjects we can all afford to know more about – including sexual consent, youth empowerment and the climate crisis.


A Manchester Wire Partnership post
Fri 22 Oct - Thu 28 Oct,
The Horsfall, 2 Jersey St, Ancoats, Manchester M4 6JB
Sarah Walters
Published on:
Wed 20 Oct 2021