Most exhibition openings begin with wine and maybe some canapes – not a man starting a 65-hour vigil. Nikhil Chopra’s Coal on Cotton is one of the most anticipated free events at Manchester International Festival, and coincidentally begins his run just as the Whitworth brings in a whole new collection of art to marvel at. Opening alongside the Indian artist’s three-day installation are:

Revolutionary Light – A collection of the Whitworth’s best works on paper, including some by William Blake.
Continental Drift – Work by some leading European artists, and British artist with links to the continent, with drawings and prints by Pablo Picasso – Poverty (1903) and Le Repas Frugal (1904) among them – probably being the most sought-after works on display.
Wall to Wall – A culmination of five years work by the Heritage Lottery Fund’s Collecting Cultures scheme, this showcases some of the most exciting wallpaper around, documenting its transition from background decoration to art, including some works by contemporary artists.
Alison Wilding – Taken from her Deep Water (1989) collection, this will be the first time that this highly significant set of sculptures has been on show at the Whitworth.
Pavel Büchler –  Exhibiting his new work Idle Thoughts, the MMU professor’s work is one of the gallery’s most recent acquisitions. In these pieces, Pavel set about keeping a diary, writing each day for a month over the top of each other on a single page, day after day, year after year.
Contruction – Dwelling on the last major remodelling of the Whitworth – which resulted in the South Gallery – this exhibition features abstract works that combine mathematical equation with industrial materials from the 1960s.

All works listed Fri 5 Jul – Sun 1 Sep, Whitworth Art Gallery, Oxford Road, M15 6ER, Open throughout Nikhil Chopra’s 65-hour residency, then normal gallery opening hours, FREE, @WhitworthArt

Fri 5 Jul - Sun 1 Sep
Matthew Britton
Published on:
Fri 5 Jul 2013