Monday, 20 December 2010

Take part in 2011!

For the last 4 years, the Saltaire Arts Trail has been proud to have worked alongside the Saltaire Festival. It's been a fruitful partnership, bringing colour and creativity to the streets of Saltaire. The Saltaire Arts Trail is expanding and developing what it offers to become an event in its own right and from next year will move to the bank holiday over 28th-30th May 2011.

We have some exciting ideas for the coming year and are looking forward to putting them in place and bringing you a vibrant, high quality event. As in previous years, there will be the popular Maker's Fair in Victoria Hall, and the Open Houses where villagers' homes are transformed into unique galleries. We're currently looking for artists and makers to take part in both these events, so if you have a creative spark and are interested in exhibiting and selling your work, click here to download an application form.

We'd also love to hear from anyone looking to volunteer, either at the event itself, or helping with preparations in the run up to May. If that sounds like you, just drop us an email to and we'll be in touch.

Sunday, 19 December 2010

Living Advent Calendar Lights Up Saltaire

The nights might be drawing in, but with the festive season in full swing, the streets of Saltaire are once again being illuminated with the Living Advent Calendar. From Santa to snowflakes, llamas to lions, the creativity of the village is bringing a bit of seasonal magic to snowy Saltaire.

Each day throughout December, a new window is revealed, until all the windows are lit on Christmas Eve and will stay lit until 5th January.

So wrap up warm against the winter chill and enjoy a festive stroll around the village.

For a map of all the windows and a look at the ones open so far, click here >>

Thursday, 9 December 2010

Saltaire Arts Trail Co-ordinator needed!

We're currently on the lookout for a new member of the Arts Trail team, to co-ordinate the project leads and help deliver another memorable event in 2011.

This is a paid position on a fixed term contract, and will involve working part time, including evenings and weekends.

For more details, including a full job spec and how to apply, simply
click here.

If you have any questions about the role, send an email to and we'll be in touch.

Good luck!

Thursday, 2 September 2010

In conversation with photojournalist Asadour Guzelian

Tickets are now available for the conversation between Asadour and Anne McNeill, Director of Impressions Gallery. The event is in conjunction with the exhibition of Asadour's photographs in the stunning roof space in Salts Mill. The exhibition is a celebration of just short of 25 years of taking photos for national newspapers and magazines.

The discussion will take place in the roof space on Wednesday 15th September at 3pm, with tickets costing £3. It will be a fascinating insight into the work of a photographer with a national reputation. If you have any interest in photography or photojournalism, it's one not to miss.

Monday, 9 August 2010

The Art Lounge - Monday 30th August, 8pm 'til late

The Art Lounge at Saltaire.

A night of cool music as you unwind at the end of the bank holiday. As a fundraiser for the Saltaire Arts Trail, the wonderful The Housekeeping Society, fresh from their recent spot on the BBC, will be giving their time and playing. And there'll be a tuck shop, vintage kitsch raffle and board games.

Join us for an easy Monday night at Caroline Street Social Club.

Tuesday, 20 July 2010

Giuseppe Lambertino

I have attached a link to a review of an exhibition by one of the artists exhibiting at this year's Saltaire Arts Trail. I went to see the exhibition last month and it's a stunning show, curated by Yvonne Carmichael. The photographer is Giuseppe Lambertino and the exhibition is at City Inn in Leeds, five minutes walk from the train station. I thoroughly recommend you go, if get the opportunity.

We have just recorded an interview between Yvonne and Giuseppe about his work and his inspirations, which we will be uploading here very soon. It's a very good listen, so come back and check it out.

Monday, 28 June 2010

Volunteer Co-ordinator wanted

For the last three years, the Saltaire Arts Trail has been an exciting part of the very successful Saltaire Festival. Bringing together visual arts from both the local community and professionals across Yorkshire, the Arts Trail has incorporated Open Houses (residents’ houses used as unique gallery spaces), a makers' fair, family events and an open exhibition, all focused in and around Saltaire.

The Arts Trail has grown each year and - in addition to a showcase event as part of the 2010 Saltaire Festival this September - from May 2011 the Arts Trail will become a stand-alone event. The new format of the Arts Trail will include elements such as theatre, music, debate and outdoor art as well as increased education and participatory activities.

The Saltaire Arts Trail is developed and managed by volunteers. To support the work of the Saltaire Arts Trail Committee we are looking for a Volunteer Co-ordinator. The Volunteer Co-ordinator will be responsible for recruiting and supporting a team of volunteers to assist in a range of activities across the Arts Trail. It is anticipated that this will include both ongoing support over the next 10-12 months, as well as recruiting a wider set of volunteers to provide hands-on assistance over the two Saltaire Arts Trail events (11-19 September 2010 and 22-30 May 2011).

The ideal candidate will be organised, able to get on well with people of all different ages and backgrounds, and with a positive “can do” attitude. Experience in HR and/or working with volunteers would be welcome, but a willingness to commit to making the Saltaire Arts Trail a success is far more important. This role is on a voluntary basis, but will provide an excellent opportunity to gain experience in the world of arts / events management.

For further details or an informal chat about the role, please contact David Worsley on 07802 445786 or by email at

We also have a range of other opportunities for volunteers, including developing / supporting individual events for the May 2011 Saltaire Arts Trail. If you would be interested in these roles, please also contact David.

Wednesday, 23 June 2010

Stone & Tankard

The Tree Tower by Nick Tankard

Three Apples by Paul Stone

I wanted to give you taste of a couple of the artists exhibiting in September. This is always the exciting bit, seeing the artwork, when the pulse quickens and the expectation rises.

Paul Stone, who is based in Sheffield, has described his work thus: "Once considered undignified for serious artistic endeavour, still life has a rich history, its repertoire altering as the genre has evolved. Recently I came across the word Rhopography, and old-fashioned term for still life paintings, meaning the study of trivial objects and small wares. I can appreciate this in reference to my work, particularly reflecting the alterations in art, on the meanings of objects within the last century.

Originally my work had a very traditional, almost simplistic approach to the process of creating artworks. As the paintings (and thereby my practice as whole) have developed and matured, my previous research in History Of Art has over time organically breathed a fresh perspective into the artworks.

At the core of my paintings is the search for a precision of focus on the formal properties of mundane objects that have an everyday, unremarkable presence in our lives. As the majority of the inanimate objects are gathered from local charity shops, they also record a previous unknown transience moment when they are suddenly cast out for whatever reason. This results in a familiar and nostalgic content, and for me a more intimate relationship with their representation." (Courtesy of gallerytop)

Nick Tankard "is a local lad, born and raised at Carr Lane, Windhill. His bedroom window overlooked the Aire valley, and he lived with a view of Salts Mill throughout his childhood. Education was at Nab Wood Grammar, and then on to a graphic design course at Bradford. He was drawn towards illustrating children’s books, and did a Higher National qualification at Middlesborough and then a Degree at Wolverhampton.

He is strongly influenced by Northern industrial towns and their architecture, which he draws in what he describes as his own particular “wonky” style, using his own brand of fantasy and humour." (Courtesy Roger Clarke and

Tuesday, 22 June 2010

Social networking and things...

To keep up-to-date with everything Saltaire Arts Trail related, you can now check out what's happening via this blog, facebook and twitter. Our twitter username is @saltaireart.

Just to keep you abreast of what's going on. We had a really productive meeting last week to discuss the programming for May 2011. It's going to be a packed programme, which will include outside art, evening events, workshops, a symposium, family activities, urban projections, street performances, exhibitions and participatory activities.

As part of the Arts Trail, there will be evening events around the village during the week and three days of high quality creative endeavour over the Spring Bank Holiday weekend.

The evening events will feature music, theatre (hopefuly, in collaboration with Theatre in the Mill) and spoken word. We want to encourage new, experimental artwork and are keen to put on inter-disciplinary events, such as music improvised over film or hip hop and spoken word. It's great to have Iain Bloomfield from Theatre in the Mill involved.

And how do you fancy the thought of a giant felt pirate ship? Thanks to Artworks, we might have one of those, too.

Tuesday, 1 June 2010

Saltaire Arts Trail 2008

If you are new to the Arts Trail and want to know more about it, here's a little something to whet your appetite for September.

Saltaire Arts Trail 2008
With thanks to Yvonne Carmichael.

Monday, 31 May 2010

Life Drawing with Jon Wiltshire

6 hour Life drawing marathon Sunday 6th June 2010

A 6 hour marathon drawing session, Tutor led. The day will be split up into 2 parts the first being a series of drawing exercises concentrating on approaches and techniques, building confidence. The second part of the day will be a 3hr study from life. Jon says that what has become very apparent is the lack of opportunity for people to work for extended periods of time from a life model. He has acquired the beautiful The Glen Room in Victoria Hall Saltaire, where a limited number of people (maximum 20) will work from 2 models for durations of up to 3hrs.

Please contact him to reserve your place.

Sunday 6th June Victoria Hall, Victoria Road Saltaire Shipley BD18 3JS.

The class is £30 per person, which is inclusive of materials and light refreshments, Please contact him at for further information and to reserve your place on the workshop or telephone 07944558232.

Sunday, 16 May 2010

Reminder for Makers' Fair applications

For all those still wishing to apply to the Makers' Fair, you have two weeks left. The deadline is 28th May. The quality of the applications we have received so far has been high, so we are looking forward to another great event with some very talented makers on display.

Tuesday, 4 May 2010

Children's Mini Trail

Artworks, the fantastic Bradford-based organisation that delivers innovative projects using creativity as a force for change, will be providing a children's activities workshop as part of the Mini Trail this year. Messing around in a 3-dimensional play environment, children will be encouraged to hide and explore in dens and tunnels; they will be able to make their own flags and bunting; and also decorations, which will be used to decorate the area.

That and the amazing projects that the Thornton Grammar School students have been coming up with are going to make a very fab and very wonderful Mini Trail.

Friday, 9 April 2010

Scope for September

Things are progessing nicely as we work our way towards September. With the planned move to May, in 2011, this September's event will not be a usual Arts Trail. We will instead be offering a taster or a showcase of what you can expect when you come in the early summer of 2011.

We have 7 areas that we are going to focus events around, which are: Participation, Outside Art, Evening Events, Exhibitions, Open Houses, Families and the Makers' Fair. So, in September, there will be an event in each of these categories to whet your appetite.

Being a showcase, it means that we are highlighting different aspects of the Arts Trail, including the Open Houses. We will be opening about 7 houses and will be selecting the artists from those that have exhibited in previous years. 5 of those houses will be 'selling' houses and 2 will be ones that will show work that is of a more non-commercial nature. As a consequence, this year we will not be putting a call out for artists. This is a one-off because it is a transition year, and a call will go out again towards the end of the year for artists to exhibit in the Open Houses in May 2011.

There is a tremendous wealth of artistic talent in Yorkshire and our purpose when we move to May is to showcase that in the fullest way that we can. This is one of the key reasons for the move and September is a stepping stone on that journey.

Wednesday, 31 March 2010

Makers' Fair

Just to let you know that the Makers' fair application forms are now available to download from the website.

Last year was a fantastic event, our most successful yet, with sales over the two days totalling around £9,000. It's a popular event with the general public and with the makers who take part.

If you hand-make 3-d objects, whether its jewellery, textiles, wood, books, or something completely different, we'd love to hear from you...

Tuesday, 23 March 2010

Makers' Fair application forms

Just to let you know that the Makers' Fair application forms will shortly be available online for download. Keep an eye out for them...

Exciting times for the Arts Trail

As some of you may or may not know, we have been asking some questions about the future of the Arts Trail.

The first fledgling Arts Trail grew out of the Saltaire Festival in 2007. Since then our relationship with the Festival has been an extremely fruitful one and we are proud to have been working in close partnership with it for these last three years. Now in our fourth year we feel that there is enormous potential for the Arts Trail to develop into one of the most exciting and engaging visual arts events in the region showcasing the myriad ways that the visual arts can transform our lives. So, from 2011, the Arts Trail will be moving to May (the exact date to be confirmed) to become an event in its own right.

In May 2011, our aim will be to fill every nook and cranny in Saltaire with art, partnering with key organisations from around West Yorkshire to bring you an event we hope will inspire you.

So, this year, in September, we will have a core Arts Trail bringing you the best of the Arts Trail and letting you know what we are planning for May 2011. It's an exciting time and we are looking forward to a bright and colourful future.

Sunday, 28 February 2010

Yinka Shonibare

How do you confront serious issues like global conflict as an artist?

Here's a video of Yinka Shonibare discussing an exhibition he had in 2006.

Sumptuous, visually attractive work provides an entry where he hopes his audience will engage on a deeper level.

Thornton Grammar School

Towards the beginning of this year, Thornton Grammar School approached us to say that they had been looking at the Arts Trail as part of their Creative and Media course. They want to use the Arts Trail as 'real life' experience for their students. So, those students on the second year of the course are designing and developing events that will be integral to this year's Mini Trail. It's about the whole process taken from the initial idea through its development to the finished product.

And the Arts Trail is extremely pleased to be in a position where we can help the school and the pupils realise some of their fantastic proposals. So, come September, you will be able to experience activities devised and developed by some very talented teenagers.

We value these partnerships highly and in the future will be looking for others, so that we can provide the opportunity for more teenagers to display their considerable flair.

Thursday, 18 February 2010

Malcolm Le Grice

I don't know if anyone has come across Malcolm Le Grice. I did today - this piece, anyway, and I thought it was stunning.

It's from 1972, called Threshold

Tuesday, 16 February 2010

Looking forward

We've been doing a lot of evaluating of the Arts Trail over the winter, thinking about where we've come from and where we would like to go. Since its inception in 2007, we believed that the Arts Trail, or an event like it, in this area had enormous potential. Saltaire with its rich, evocative history is an inspiration in itself, really telling the story of industry from the Industrial Revolution to the present day: the change from rural cottage industries to the power of the machine age, the dominance of the British Empire in the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries, and their slow decline to the mid 1980s. In its heyday, Salts Mill produced 18 miles of worsted cloth per day on its 1,200 looms employing 3,000 people. It continued to manufacture textiles for over 130 years. But by the mid 1980s, the Mill was semi-derelict.

The Mill was bought by Jonathan Silver in 1987 and, with the help of his childhood friend David Hockney, he transformed its fortunes and that of the village.

Saltaire is choc-full of creative people from artists and writers to people who work in the theatre and arts administration. The diversity of its artistic community is overwhelming. But its not just Saltaire. Shipley, Bingley, Balidon, Keighley, Bradford... There is a huge appetite for artistic experience and a multitude of practitioners engaging in all forms of creativity.

We want the Arts Trail to celebrate all of that; to be a showcase for the incredible talent that exists in this region; to draw visitors from all over the north of England and beyond; to engage people, excite them, and encourage their participation.

So, we have some plans for the future and we'll let you know about them as soon as we can.

Thursday, 28 January 2010

Upcoming events

A couple of unrelated events that I thought could be quite interesting.

Crunchtime2010 is on in York from 29th January to 6th February. It says that 'It’s a snapshot of voices contained in work engaging with how the world and living is at the present time.' There will be a series of events and exhibitions relating to art and global issues, including the planting of an oak tree and placing a stone in central York, as part of the ongoing worldwide project '7000 Oaks' initiated by Joseph Beuys.

The other thing is something to hopefully look out for in March. Bradford was designated the world's first UNESCO City of Film in June 2009. It is a fantastic accolade for Bradford. And in March, it has been proposed that there will be a high profile public 'film festival city' weekend. So, keep an eye out for information on activities throughout the Bradford District to celebrate UNESCO city of film status.

Tuesday, 19 January 2010


Planning has begun for 2010...

It's the beginning of the process but it feels good to be on the road again. There were many positives that came out of last year: the Open Houses were great and very popular again showcasing some fantastically talented artists; the Makers' Fair is embedding itself on the first weekend and the standard of work gets higher every year; the Open Exhibition had double the number of entries to the year before; and the Mini Trail was again a great day out for families.

We were incredibly pleased to have 3 of the country's top textile artists come and give talks (Janet Bolton, Sue Lawty and Dionne Swift) and Janet brought up 15 of her exquisite and charming pictures for exhibition.

As there always is, there were a few things that didn't go so well and we will be doing our best to learn from those mistakes. Even though it feels like it's been round of years, the Arts Trail is still relatively new and we are learning a lot as we go along.

We also worked with some fabulous organisations last year, including Bradford College, Bradford Museums and Galleries, Bradford Libraries and Kirkgate Studios and Workshops. We are very grateful to them for their hard work and enthusiasm, and hope to develop our relationship with them further.

We'll let you know what's going on and what's happening as things develop.

In the meantime, I found this fantastic piece by Jan Svankmajer that he made in 1966 - Punch and Judy.