With the Christmas markets in full swing and the smell of the Yorkshire pudding wraps rising over Manchester as industrial smog once did – the city centre may seem a bustling and daunting place – but fear not! We’ve pulled together a list of five of the best art exhibitions in Manchester this Winter for those seeking solace and calm among the throng of Christmas commercialism….

Strip! How Football Got Shirty | National Football Museum | 22 Nov - 7 Jun 2020 | Free

With the popularity of vintage football shirts on the rise (a trend that has grown alongside the middle-aged-IPA-drinking-football-shirt-fanatic), the National Football Museum has put together an exhibition examining the development of the football shirt throughout history, including a selection of some of the best examples of kit design, alongside a Hall Of Shame (we’re looking at you, the Manchester United 2001 away kit).

National Football Museum, Urbis Building Cathedral Gardens, Todd Street, Manchester, M4 3BG, Tel: 0161 605 8200
Out Of The Crate | Manchester Art Gallery | 7 Nov - 28 Nov 2021 | Free

This one is an absolute must-see for sculpture fanatics. Out Of The Crate allows exhibition-goers a rare glimpse into Manchester’s public sculpture collection and archive material. The historic selection ranges from antiquity to the present day – and some pieces, they confess, have been hidden away and under researched – so this exhibition has offered the Manchester Art Gallery a chance to bring these long-neglected pieces back to life and into the public eye.

Manchester Art Gallery, Mosley Street, Manchester, M2 3JL, Tel: 0161 235 8888
Overspill: The History of the Manchester Slum Clearance to Darnhill and Langley | People’s History Museum | 5 Oct - 12 Jan 2020 | Free

This eye-opening exhibition offers a voice to the people who were needlessly neglected during the Manchester slum clearances of the 1950s and 1960s, an event that saw families supplanted from their homes and moved to settlements on the fringes of the city. At times heartbreaking and at other times uplifting: this vital – and free to view – exhibition is not one to miss this Winter.

People’s History Museum, Left Bank, Spinningfields, Manchester, M3 3ER, Tel: 0161 838 9190
The State Of Us | The Lowry | 9 Nov - 23 Feb 2020 | Free

An exhibition that engages with modern interactive modes of technology, The State Of Us is a unique showcase that promises to shock and excite attendees. The experience offers a meditation on the body, how we consider our ‘self’ in relation to others and how technological progress has problematized the laws of evolution. Come armed with an open mind and catch it at The Lowry this Winter.

The Lowry, Pier 8, The Quays, Salford, M50 3AZ, Tel: 0343 208 6000
Manchester Open Exhibition | HOME | 18 Jan - 15 Mar 2020 | Free

It would be rude to ignore Home on a list like this. This all-encompassing exhibition runs during the latter half of Winter – during the weird post-Santa adjustment period, where dead Christmas trees litter the streets and gardens around the country – but is arguably the most exciting as it features art by people just like you – yes, you Mancunians! HOME’s goal was to assimilate art by the residents of Greater Manchester by sending out an open-call for creatives to submit their work and have it showcased in their main gallery space – the same area that recently housed the hugely popular art of filmmaker David Lynch. With over 2,000 submissions, this exhibition promises to be varied and wild.

HOME, 2 Tony Wilson Place, Manchester M15 4FN, Tel: 0161 200 1500
Fri 22 Nov - Sun 15 Mar
Will Stonier
Published on:
Sat 28 Dec 2019