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Manchester reviewed
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Manchester lifestyle reviews

School Bus New York by Liam Spencer

Liam Spencer: Painting from Life

at Salford Museum and Art Gallery

Reviewed by Mark Iddon March 2011

 

The retrospective exhibition of the artist Liam Spencer now on at the Salford Museum and Art Gallery, is a wonderful opportunity to see a range of vibrant impressionistic painting of views which will be familiar to many people living around Manchester and Salford.

 

The exhibition has been at the Rochdale Touchstones Gallery for the last four months and will be moving to Oldham in June. The collection is of his work, over the last 20 years or so, and features his Manchester paintings, and work from visits to Andaluci, Beijing, Istanbul and New York. There are many paintings from his private collection (earlier in his career), and key works on loan from private collectors along with new work including views of Chapel Street, Blackfriars, Salford Cathedral, Kings Head in Salford, and the Bridgewater Canal at Worsley.

 

On entering the gallery there are two similar views of Salford Quays, one from 2000, with The Lowry Theatre and Imperial War Museum prominent with a fading industrial backdrop, alongside a recent (2011) view where the above buildings sit beside the rising new Media City building complex with a civilised canal side walkway. The first was painted for an opening exhibition at The Lowry Theatre which brought Liam to the attention of a wider audience as a Manchester artist. Although he would tend to refrain from commissioned work, he was selected to produce paintings of the City of Manchester Stadium for the Commonwealth games in 2002 and the distinctive style of Liam’s work was used in the marketing of the event. Although important in establishing Liam’s status as an artist, they do not feature in this collection and the work shown is of a quality that there is no void where this work should have been.

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Manchester lifestyle reviews

Anish Kapoor: Flashback

at Manchester Art Gallery until June 5

Reviewed by Dave Porter March 2011

Billed as the first ever major show of Kapoor’s work outside London in more than a decade, this collection does not disappoint. It is not so much the number of sculptures which is impressive – you can scoot round the entire exhibition pretty swiftly – but the sheer scale and breadth of his work which leaves you breathless.

 

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Manchester lifestyle reviews

Communicative Capitalism: this is what democracy looks like

'Communicative Capitalism:

this is what democracy looks like'

Public Lecture by Professor Jodi Dean

At International Anthony Burgess Foundation

Reviewed by Simon Belt March 2011

Professor Jodi Dean of Hobart and William Smith Colleges, New York had been invited by Professor Berthold Schoene and The Institute for Humanities and Social Sciences Research (IHSSR) at Manchester Metropolitan University for a week of discussions and a headline Public Lecture entitled 'Communicative Captialism: this is what democracy looks like'. Prior to this lecture, I managed to join Jodi when she led a research workshop on the chapter entitled 'Technology: The Promises of Communicative Capitalism' from her book 'Democracy and other Neoliberal Fantasies: Communicative Capitalism and Left Politics'.

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Manchester lifestyle reviews

The Beatles by Harry Hammond

The Birth of British Rock @ The Lowry

Photographs by Harry Hammond

Reviewed by Sara Porter February 2011

This exhibit of over eighty photographs from Hammond’s career as a music photographer is on loan from the V & A collection of over 9000 photographs, and their source perhaps demonstrates the importance that accompanies this record of the development of British music. It is considered to be the definitive photographic collection of the leading British artists and American visiting artists of the fifties and early sixties.

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Manchester lifestyle reviews

An installation by David Jacques

David Jacques: The Irlam House Bequest

Walker Art Gallery, Liverpool

Reviewed by Denis Joe February 2011

 

Another year, another Liverpool celebration!

 

If any city in the world thrives on it's past, it is Liverpool. Whether atoning for the slave trade ("Psst! Wanna buy a guilt trip?) or Ringo ("don't call me 'Ringo'") Starr making a prat of himself when "kick-starting" the year of Capital of Culture in 2008, nothing seems too tacky to present to the outside world.

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