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21st September 2013

Venue Guide: Off the Beaten Track

Perhaps not so well known as Manchester’s larger institutions, these venues make a vibrant, intelligent and exciting contribution to the art scene of the city

Craft and Design Centre

17 Oak Street, M4 5JD

In the heart of Manchester’s creative Northern Quarter, Manchester Craft & Design Centre is housed in a former Victorian fish and poultry market building. It’s home to 19 working studio boutiques where 35 artists, designers and craftspeople produce and sell work to the public six days a week. 



Quay House, Quay St, M3 3JE

An independent gallery space is set in the heart of Spinningfields. Currently showing paintings by the artist Andrew Hunt who was twice selected for The BP National Portrait Award.


Castlefield Gallery

2 Hewitt Street, M15 4GB

An organisation for developing and emerging contemporary artists and practice, this gallery responds to national and international trends, promoting artists at key stages of their careers.


Islington Mill

James Street, Salford, M3 5HW

Based in Salford and housed in the buildings and courtyard of a former Victorian mill Islington Mill runs innovative inter-disciplinary arts programmes forged in the spirit of D-I-Y.


Chinese Arts Centre

Market Buildings, Thomas Street, M4 1EU

The Centre houses a number of permanent art installations by contemporary Chinese artists and interesting design features that reference Chinese culture as well as temporary art exhibitions.


Antwerp Mansion

Kent Road West, M14 5RF

A derelict Victorian mansion that has been turned into a haven for music, art and photography.


The Veggie Café

The Univerity of Manchester

The sad news of the potential closing of the much-beloved veggie café doesn’t just taunt us with the possible loss of lecture-sustaining flapjacks and 60p tea, it also leads us to reflect on its variety of roles in daily university life, especially its place, albeit its modest place, in Manchester’s art scene. In its own right, the cafe deserves a degree of recognition as a platform for local artists to exhibit and sell their work but also purely as a place where you can view art – whatever you think of it. Combined with the greasy-spoon type charm of the cafe’s layout and the scattering of mismatching canvasses, The Veggie Cafe is homely, welcoming and we’ll miss it. So before we have to say goodbye, go and take a visit, buy a flapjack and a tea, but most importantly, marvel, grumble or wince at the walls.






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