Fancy a break from snuggling on the sofa with netflix? Here’s a small guide to point you in the direction of the best upcoming art galleries and exhibitions in Manchester and across the North West.

Future Ages Will Wonder | FACT, Liverpool | Until 20 Feb

The artworks on display bring together traditional mediums such as textiles, sculpture, and photography with virtual reality, computer algorithms and synthetic DNA to reimagine stories about our past, present and future.

Through this wide range of materials and art-making, the exhibition refocuses where we place attention and what we value: reimagining stories about our past, present and future.

FACT, 88 Wood Street, Liverpool L1 4DQ
Derek Jarman's Protest! | Manchester Art Gallery | 2 Dec 2021 - 10 April 2022

Manchester Art Gallery’s long-delayed celebration of the life and career of artist Derek Jarman will officially open on Wed 1 Dec, with visitors invited to explore key items from his career as a painter, writer, set-designer, filmmaker, political activist and gardener.

Manchester Art Gallery, Mosley Street, Manchester M2 3JL
Suzanne Lacy: What Kind of City? A manual for Social Change | Whitworth Art Gallery | 26 Nov 2021 - 10 Apr 2022 |

The Whitworth presents a special presentation of three iconic collaborative installations by the US artist Suzanne Lacy, renowned for her social practice art and community organising for five decades.

The exhibition (26 Nov-10 Apr) which signals a fresh direction in Lacy’s illustrious career, is presented in partnership with Manchester Art Gallery, which is showing Uncertain Futures, a new collaborative artwork created with women from Manchester’s diverse communities, and Cleaning Conditions, a project also created in the city.

The Whitworth, Oxford Rd, Manchester M15 6ER
Lucien Freud: Real Lives | Tate Liverpool | Until 16 Jan 2022

Lucian Freud was a British painter who is widely celebrated for his portraits. A deeply private man, the people in Freud’s paintings were often those closest to him – his friends, family, fellow artists and lovers.

Freud’s portraits are an intensely personal record of the time spent with those who he knew best. The artist had the masterful ability to capture the mood and inner essence of his sitters. Visitors to this exhibition will see paintings, etchings and photographs featuring the artist’s most recognised sitters including his first wife Kitty Garman, his friend and studio assistant David Dawson and performance artist Leigh Bowery.

Royal Albert Dock, Liverpool L3 4BB
Sumuyya Khader: Always Black Never Blue | Bluecoat, Liverpool | Until Sun 23 Jan

Sumuyya Khader’s solo exhibition at Bluecoat reflects on contemporary life in Liverpool and explores people and place through illustration, drawing, print and painting.

The exhibition marks Khader’s first UK solo show in a public gallery and brings together work produced across her career to date. This includes a recent return to painting, the medium that first drew her to art, an artistic development that has been supported by a residency here at Bluecoat in the months leading up to Khader’s exhibition.

8 School Ln, Liverpool L1 3BX
Cassils: Human Measure | HOME | Until Sun Dec 12

Cassils is a transgender visual artist who makes their own body the material and protagonist of their performances. Working in live performance, sculpture, photography, sound design and film, Cassils contemplates the history(s) of LGBTQI+ violence, representation, struggle and power.

Referencing conceptualism, feminism, and body art, Cassils powerfully trains their body for different performative purposes, committing to a process of extreme physical and psychological endurance. By positioning their body as a battleground, it is with sweat, blood, and sinew that Cassils shares experiences for contemplating histories of violence, representation, struggle, and survival.

2 Tony Wilson Pl, Manchester M15 4FN
Manchester Art Fair | Manchester Central | Fri 19 Nov - Sun 21 Nov

Renowned as one of the UK’s most ambitious art events, Manchester Art Fair returns to the city in November.

The event, which is sponsored by White Circle, will take place across Sat 20 Nov-Sun 21 Nov, unveiling a line-up of exhibiting galleries and artists, partnerships and a particular focus on the hot topic of Non-Fungible Tokens (NFTs).

Windmill St, Manchester M2 3GX
Jock McFadyen Goes to The Lowry: An exhibition 45 years in the making | Lowry, Salford | Until Sun 27 Feb

Marking the Lowry’s first exhibition since the pandemic, the venue will be showing with Jock McFadyen Goes to The Lowry: An exhibition 45 years in the making until the end of February.

Spanning a range of work from throughout his career, the collection highlights McFayden’s ‘passion for painting the overlooked margins of the modern city and its inhabitants, as well as huge panoramic views of the natural world’.

The Lowry, The Quays, Salford M50 3AZ,
Poppies | Imperial War Museum North | Permanent exhibition

The brand-new artwork, Poppies, is now open at Imperial War Museum North. The sculptures were originally part of the installation Blood Swept Land and Seas of Red, and became part of a national cultural programme to mark the First World War Centenary.

Conceived by ceramic artist Paul Cummins and designer Tom Piper, the poppies were hand-crafted from clay by a team of over 300 people. They have now been combined and returned to Manchester as part of Imperial War Museums’ permanent collection.

Mon 1 Nov - Mon 28 Feb
Suzy Prince
Published on:
Tue 23 Nov 2021