Category: Archive

Dropping Anchor studio launch

The studio launch was a great success. £200 funds were raised, art works exhibited, and visitors came to meet Pool Arts and take part in the event celebrating the new studio! Thanks to everyone who helped to run the evening and set up. More photos coming soon


Dropping Anchor: Pool Arts new studio launch event

We are delighted to announce that we will be holding a launch event for our new studio in Ardwick. This new sustainable studio model means that we are now hosting Associate Members, professional artists who will work alongside our members’ shared studio space. At the launch we will be showcasing our self contained Associate spaces, showing work by members and generally celebrating the voyage of discovery that Pool Arts has been on


Julie Portland exhibition


Pool Arts’ Julie Portland is exhibiting photographs at Croma in Didsbury. We’d like to Thank Aroma for supporting a series of individual exhibitions in their restaurant over the 4 months. Its great experience for the artists and the work looks great. All the work in the show is for sale, contact us if you are interested in buying – proceeds to Pool Arts studio funds.

Join Our New Studio Associates!

Welcome to The New Pool Arts Studio spaces. This new studio model includes self contained spaces with WiFi and natural south facing window light, ground floor access and close to transport network and Universities. Just 5 minutes from Manchester City centre and Piccadilly Station. Contact us now for more details if you are interested in joining as a Pool Arts member or as an Associate.

We would like to thank Arts Council England for helping to get the studio off the ground and Shoosmiths for their continued support.

I.Baron exhibition

I.Baron poster





painting by I.Baron

by I.Baron

painting by I.Baron

painting by I.Baron

painting by I.Baron

painting by I.Baron

I.Baron makes drawings and paintings portraying extraordinary and fantastical creatures – like people, but not like anyone you’ve met – or maybe you have. He also does portraits of famous and not so famous people in a graphic style such as this one above of Elvis.

Following the very successful exhibition of Simon Mawdsleys paintings, we proudly present a new solo show of Pool Arts member I.Baron’s work at Croma Didsbury. We’d like to thank Croma for allowing us the opportunity to use the restaurant as a gallery for the coming few months.


Simon Mawdsley exhibition

Delighted to be supporting artist Simon Mawdsley in his solo exhibition at Croma restaurant in Didsbury village. Crome @cromapizza invite you to look at the exhibition – even if you’re not eating – have a coffee of a drink and see Simons fabulous paintingscroma_poster


Its now 10 years since Tonbridge Road Allotments invited Pool Arts to erect the SHED gallery (previously shown at Platt Fields) on their new Community Plot. Since then we’ve held numerous exhibitions: solo shows , group projects, workshops and residencies in the smallest gallery (possibly) in the world! And the community plot has grown too, now boasting its very own pizza oven!
Famous curator Richard Demarco visited in 2011, declaring it “The best gallery I have ever visited” Help us celebrate with the lovely Community Plot volunteers providing refreshments and Pool Artists using “10” as a theme for the usual eclectic mix of artworks. There will be a display of images from the last 10 years. Wrap up warm and toast “The SHED” 2-5pm on Sunday 6th November. You can see some of the previous projects at SHED by browsing our archive – the link is top of the menu on the right of the screen.

Pool Arts manager / mentor role

advertjobPool Arts is looking for a mentor manager to work closely with Pool Arts members over the coming year

as they develop their new studio facility in Ardwick. This is a one year freelance role

For details please download the job description and details of how to apply here POOL ARTS STUDIO MANAGER


Join Pool Arts

work by I. Baron

work by I. Baron

Pool Arts has around twenty members who benefit from being part of a pioneering and inclusive organisation.

We currently offer mentor sessions and a chance to be fully involved in helping run Pool Arts.We are working towards a fully sustainable studio space that will offer hot design art studio space to members and opportunities to take part in workshops and projects alongside professional Associate artists. Watch this space to see how this develops!

Details of Associate membership to follow…

If you or someone you know would like to talk about joining Pool Arts, just let us know – find more information at the “about” page where you can download information about how to join.

Penny Arcade and David Hoyle become patrons of Pool Arts



David Hoyle, Penny Arcade with Pool Arts artist Akinyemi Oludele at HOME July 2015

Internationally famous performance artist Penny Arcade and Manchester’s David Hoyle (The Divine David) have become patrons of Manchester based Arts charity, Pool Arts.

Penny Arcade became one of Andy Warhol’s Factory Superstars in the 60s and worked with avant garde film maker Jack Smith. Pool Arts has been using project space in Castlefield Gallery’s New Art Spaces and this year developed Dreaming Of New York, which culminated in A Dinner with Penny Arcade – a performance event at HOME.



Pool Arts members will be travelling en masse to London on 19th November during London run of her hit show: Longing Lasts Longer at The SoHo Theatre,which premiered earlier this year at The Edinburgh Festival. Penny will be hosting a workshop with the Pool Arts, responding to their Dreaming of New York exhibition.

Penny Arcade, New York performance artist since the late 1960s; Andy Warhol’s Factory Superstar; activist, writer and champion of queer culture has made a heartfelt connection with this ambitious charity which supports artists by providing work space, peer support, mentoring and opportunities to exhibit.

Dreaming of New York was exhibited at Manchester’s Castlefield Gallery New Art Spaces and later at Horsfall Space at 42nd Street in July this year. Pool Arts also hosted A Dinner With Penny Arcade performance event at HOME, Manchester’s new arts centre.

About Pool Arts: Pool Arts, set up in 1999, is run and managed by its members – some of whom are disadvantaged through their experience of mental or emotional distress, and who have found involvement in the arts may support recovery. Their group projects range from creating an art gallery in a garden shed on local allotments, to an ambitious artistic exploration of the history of mental illness at People’s History Museum in 2014

Through Arcade, iconic Manchester performance artist David Hoyle, also known as The Divine David, has also agreed to become a patron of the charity.

Pool Arts first made contact with Arcade when artist Nicola Smith made a video work in tribute to the performer after reading her book “Bad Reputation”. Smith learned one of Arcade’s performances by heart and mimed the whole thing on a self made video, filmed in her bathroom mirror. When she sent the video to Penny Arcade, Arcade loved it, posted it on her own Facebook page and the resulting comments from her fans formed the basis a new work by Nicola Smith titled There’s Only One Penny Arcade. Looking for connections in New York to inform their exhibition, Arcade responded positively to being invited to take part Pool Arts’ exhibition and also to visiting Manchester in July this year and establishing a relationship with the organisation.

Penny Arcade says: Pool Arts harnesses their collective energy to live and create outside of the illusionmarket and media, Pool Arts is the little arts collective that could!

Artist Chris Chapman, one of the Pool Arts members says: Meeting Penny Arcade during our event was to experience an extended, wonderful moment in my life! My son came along and he finally saw that I exist as something other than a mum – I’m an artist with Pool Arts. Being part of Pool Arts means we all contribute something to developing a project – and when it all comes to fruition, it’s an achievement for everybody – and nothing compares to that feeling of pride and connection .

Contact us for more information / more images


Notes to editors:

Pool Arts is a charity and company limited by guarantee. They offer peer support, temporary studio space; a chance to help run the organisation, take on management roles and opportunities to exhibit and take part in projects. They offer mentoring through visual contemporary artists James Bloomfield and Alison Kershaw. They are completely self funded and rely on donations and small grants.

Penny Arcade is available for interview. contact Pool Arts or via producer Jeremy Goldstein

Nicola Smith is available for interview please contact Pool Arts

Alison Kershaw is available on 07767356302 /

HOME is Manchester’s newest Art centre (formerly at Cornerhouse) Pool Arts hosted a Dinner with Penny Arcade in July with performances by Pool Arts artists: Penny Arcade / Ruqia / Nicola Smith / Another Adele / Sandra Bouguerch and a celebration of Penny Arcade and David Hoyles appointment as a patron of Pool ArtsCastlefield Gallery’s New Art Spaces (NAS) is an initiative to create dynamic project spaces for artists, artist collectives and artist development agencies. Making use of temporary vacant retail, office and light industrial units, NAS provides opportunities for emerging creatives to incubate their practices, produce work and showcase new art to local communities. Currently CG runs New Art Spaces in Chorlton, Leigh and Salford.

Supported by the National Lottery through Arts Council England. To find out more about the Arts Council visit the What we do section of our website