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First Tuesday current affairs discussion - Tuesday 5 December 7:00pm start

Tuesday 5th Dec: First Tuesday Current Affairs discussion

We'll discuss two topical subjects

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Manchester reviewed
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Manchester lifestyle reviews

Exhibition entrance, photo by Sara Porter

Iraq: Photographs by Sean Smith

at the Imperial War Museum North

Reviewed by Sara Porter April 2013

 

This year sees the tenth anniversary of IWM North and also ten years since the 2003 Iraq War started, so it is quite apt that the museum has a new photographic display by award-winning British photographer Sean Smith. Smith documented the war in Iraq for The Guardian and was in Baghdad when the British and American coalition forces invaded, returning to the country several times to document the lives of the military and civilians.

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Manchester lifestyle reviews

A Lecture upon the Shadow

A Lecture upon the Shadow

Liverpool's Open Eye Gallery, Mann Island

Reviewed by Denis Joe December 2012

 

A Lecture upon the Shadow is an exhibition that looks at the work of six artists: three from the North West region and three from Singapore. The works have already been exhibited at the ShanghART H-Space in Shanghai, with the exception of David Jacques’ piece, which the authorities took exception to (more of that later).

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Manchester lifestyle reviews

Goodbye City Life, hello what exactly?

Mad for IT: Manchester listings and reviews online

Reviewed by Simon Belt December 2012

 

I moved to Manchester when it was a buzzing place, in the early 1980's when being Northern meant doing it for yourself, and the likes of The Fall had put it on the cultural map as proper independent. To find out where to go, what to see and what to do, meant asking for recommendations from those with their finger on the pulse.

 

Ed Glinert (now of Manchester Walks), Andy Spinoza (now of PR Agency SKV), and Chris Paul (now a Labour councillor for Withington) were a few of those people with their finger on the pulse and helped pull together a mixed bag of hippies, aspiring journalists, and above all doers to produce the City Life magazine, that established a strong reputation across the city and beyond. Some of the cultural landmarks from those heady days may still be around, but alongside the broader demise of radical politics around the millennium, culture has become safer, packaged and generally stripped of its independent spirit.

 

Here I take a look at what's filling the space vacated by the demise of City Life.

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Manchester lifestyle reviews

The Sunny Side of the Street (The Portico Library)

Clare Allan: Burnt Wood and Paper

at The Portico Library, Moseley Street

Reviewed by Simon Belt November 2012

 

I first saw Clare Allan's fabulous drawings earlier this year at the opening exhibition of the Spring Bank Arts Centre in her native New Mills, Derbyshire. Clare's talent for drawing what she feels rather than literally sees, expresses warmth and grit, grandeur yet grounding, so that her subject's personality talks to us more than her technique.

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Manchester lifestyle reviews

Fred Done

From Nags to Riches: An Evening with Fred Done

To be reviewed by Simon Belt March 2013

 

Part of the Salford Lectures Series at Salford University, this event was presumably an initiative to develop a broader dialogue with people across and from outside the University in Salford and Manchester, and promote the University by doing so. It was in the newly refurbished Chapman Building lecture theatre, and a most professional ticketing and reception process there was too. We were even given a slick lapel badge at registration, encouraging a subtle marketing mechanism if worn by visitors afterwards.

 

The format was that of a single speaker, Fred Done, with a professorial anchor to provide some focus and structure if and when required, but essentially leaving Fred to talk about his business life. Thankfully, Fred is quite a self-effacing character so tends to focus on the people or events around him rather than himself which tends to make for a more interesting presentation most of the time. This was definitely a very interesting presentation because of who Fred is and the changes in business he elaborated.

 

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Manchester lifestyle reviews

Niet Normaal: Difference on Display

Niet Normaal: Difference on Display

at the Bluecoat, Liverpool until 2nd September 2012

Reviewed by Denis Joe July 2012

 

This exhibition, comprising of the works of 24 artists, is part of the third annual DaDaFest, featuring work by international as well as regional artists, has been programmed by the Liverpool-based DaDa (Disability and Deaf Arts) organisation, formerly known as the North West Disability Arts Forum.

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Manchester lifestyle reviews

Rolf Sings

Rolf Harris: can you tell what it is yet?

Walker Gallery, Liverpool

Reviewed by Jane Turner June 2012

 

Many years ago, I took part in a discussion entitled What is Art? At the time, I couldn’t understand why a bunch of revolutionaries were sitting around intellectualising about whether or not a chair was a work of art or a functional object, whilst half the country was in dispute with the government. I might have been a little economistic in my outlook, but I’m still not sure to this day if we came up with a satisfactory answer.

 

When an Art lover, a canny investor or maybe just someone with more money than sense, can spend 74 million pounds on The Scream by Munsch - a painting that makes me feel miserable every time I see it - I still can’t figure out the Art World.

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Manchester lifestyle reviews

Favela at The Royal Standard

Favela At The Royal Standard

Reviewed by Denis Joe May 2012

 

'The Royal Standard was established in 2006 by four Liverpool-based artists in response to the need for a new artist-led organisation that would operate somewhere in between the city’s grass-roots DIY initiatives and the more established arts institutions. Originally housed in a former pub in Toxteth, in 2008 The Royal Standard undertook an ambitious relocation and expansion into a larger industrial space on the Northern periphery of the city centre, re-launching to acclaim for the 2008 Liverpool Biennial.'     [The Royal Standard Website]

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Manchester lifestyle reviews

Ian Tilton in conversation at Contact

Ian Tilton in conversation at Contact

Reviewed by Emma Short May 2012

 

Ian the shy lad at the back of the club, reading Kafka - head in a book; Ian the photographer of legendary bands, thwarted dreams to a profession unplanned; Ian the archivist documenting change; Ian the advocate with an eye to re-arrange.

 

Ian Tilton's iconic photographs of The Happy Mondays, The Stone Roses, Kurt Cobain, The Smiths, Axel Rose, the Hacienda and many more are currently being exhibited at Manchester's Contact theatre until September. However as if that wasn't treat enough, his recent 'in conversation' in the foyer at Contact was an intimate, personal & fascinating journey of one mans struggle through personal change, the importance of the visual arts documenting moments in time and the cultural reflections made possible by them. It was a reflection on the breeding ground for creativity and on a global level, the need to break down geographical and class boundaries & to support brothers and sisters from across the globe in their ambitions and lives.

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Manchester lifestyle reviews

TOPOPHOBIA: Fear of Place in Contemporary Art

TOPOPHOBIA:
Fear of Place in Contemporary Art

at the Bluecoat, Liverpool

Reviewed by Denis Joe April 2012

 

It is generally accepted that phobias arise from a combination of external events (i.e. traumatic events) and internal predispositions (i.e. heredity or genetics). Many specific phobias can be traced back to a specific triggering event, usually a traumatic experience at an early age. Social phobias and agoraphobia have more complex causes that are not entirely known at this time.

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