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Join us for an afternoon of live drawing, performance and video art in a specially devised event by Venture Arts, a Manchester-based visual arts organisation working with learning disabled and neurodiverse artists to create and showcase exciting new contemporary visual art.

Free, drop in from 12pm – 5pm.

Bonington Gallery is proud to host a VA Collectives event alongside John Beck and Matthew Cornford’s exhibition, The Art Schools of the East Midlands.

Experience artist Leslie Thompson create a large-scale drawing live in the gallery space.  A specially devised performance piece by Greater Manchester-based artist Jackie Haynes will also be presented.

Visitors will also be able to watch videos from Narratives, a six month collaborative residency in Venture Arts’ Conversations Series, which ran in partnership with Manchester Jewish Museum, Castlefield Gallery, The Lowry, Ahmed Iqbal Ullah Race Relations Resource Centre and Project Artworks.  The residency brought together 12 artists, some from Venture Arts and some via an open call, to develop shared ideas and create new artwork over 6 months, exploring personal histories and cultural heritage.

The VA Collectives are a series of events, performances, gatherings and happenings that aim to bring artists together to explore themes of relevance to their work, the arts and the world around us. The VA Collectives are the brainchild of Venture Arts, a Manchester-based visual arts organisation working with learning disabled and neurodiverse artists to create and showcase exciting new contemporary visual art.

Both the videos and the resulting drawing by Leslie Thompson will remain in the gallery over the closing weekend for visitors to enjoy.

Videos that will be presented in the gallery:

Beyond the Shelf (2022) Millie Loveday

Falling – A Memory of Her (2022) Horace Lindezey, Dominic Pillai & Alice Merida Richards

The Dying Fly (2022) Jackie Haynes

The Julie Channel (2022) Sarah Boulter

Images by Adam Grainger and Alex Jovčić-Sas

Artist bios

Thanks to independent curator Abi Spinks for programming and supporting the development of this event in response to The Art Schools of the East Midlands by John Beck & Matthew Cornford.

Header photo credit: Leslie Thompson by Sarah Boulter, 2022.

In acknowledgement of Nottingham School of Art and the wider city’s legacy of bringing pioneering experimental music to local audiences, we are delighted to welcome Nottingham’s Rammel Club to programme an evening of visionary music, sound and performance at Bonington Gallery.

Free tickets – click here to book

“The Rammel Club… is a deceptively vital outlet for underground music.”
The Wire Magazine

Limited edition poster for the exhibition
Gig poster from Rammel Club event

Line up:

Design A Wave
Design A Wave is a long-standing electronic music act from London. At present, the sole member is Tom Hirst. Initiated in the late 1990s, the musical style of the project has varied radically in the subsequent years, taking in and responding to Hauntological pop music, computer and modular synth-based generative music and science fiction soundtrack along the way. This expansiveness in style is reflected in the variety of labels that have released recordings of Design A Wave, which includes Alien Jams, Alter, Bezirk and Rush Hour’s no label amongst many others. Tom Hirst also performs and records in a sibling project American Sound, plays keyboards in the pop/rap act Dean Rodney Jr and the Cowboys, and has collaborated on other projects with artists such as Alice Theobald, Lizzie Homersham and Ayesha Hameed. 

Dawn Terry
Dawn plays slow, melancholic, optimistic music for sad people. Based in Newcastle, she is a veteran drone artist, producing work that is heavy, dreamlike, open and hypnotic; long-form minimalist landscapes characterised by an austere openness, barely punctured by hypnotic drumming or slowly intoned vocals.

Paul Paschal
Paul Paschal is an artist, writer and performer living in Nottingham, UK. Most of his work is undertaken in collaboration with Rohanne Udall, currently under the name CHA X5; they have been making performances, exhibitions and curatorial projects since 2013. Their solo exhibition at Gasleak Mountain in Nottingham – which opens on Friday 13th October and runs until the end of the month – presents some studies on managerial anxieties, demonic professions of perfect boundaries and meteoric burnout.

We are also really pleased to be presenting a one night only ‘retrospective’ of Rammel Club gig posters by Daniel Ward, going back 15+ years.

Re-sensitised Symposium re-visits, reflects and re-lives the last seven years of the Sensitive Skin festival.

It brings together a diverse group of artists, all of whom have been part of the festival since its inception in 2000, pondering on the question ‘How has Sensitive Skin evolved over the past seven years and how has Live Art and Performance practice developed during that period?’

Offering talks, presentations, lectures and an “artists in conversation’ panel throughout the day, the event will culminate in a celebration closing this year’s festival, including two performances from Rajni Shah and Harminder Singh Judge.


Angela Bartram

Robin Deacon

Sheila Ghelani

Manick Govinda


Jordan McKenzie        

Daniel Belasco Rogers

‘Religious myth’ is a central theme which surrounds all of Judge’s work; whether through his complex installations, interactive performances, bodily adornments or shrine-like sculptures.  His current work in progress, Live Sermon, will be shown at the festival as a short durational performance and sound piece.  

Part of Sensitive Skin… a season of interdisciplinary arts 

Mr Quiver is a durational event that combines the intensity of performance with the intimacy of installation.  Exploring themes of identity, theatricality, and our relationship to the land we live on, this performance is built and then destroyed over the space of four hours.  Audience members enter the space and leave as they wish, and may walk amongst the performers or sit back and enjoy the spectacle around them.  

Rajni Shah (director/performer), Lucille Acevedo-Jones (costume/set designer), and Cis O’Boyle (lighting designer) create three performative loops that weave in and out of synchronisation during the four hours.  By repeatedly inhabiting and abandoning the figures of Elizabeth I and a traditional Indian bride, Rajni reveals more and more of her true self during the performance and gently invites the audience to question their own identity.   

Complete with haunting original vocals (live and recorded) and a stunning series of costumes, this delicate and probing performance offers up questions and images that will stay with an audience long after leave the event.    

This exhibition explored how the ritualistic activities of these groups and individuals can be realised by actors and interpreted in moving image.

Exhibiting artist Ben Judd used performance and video to explore notions of scepticism and belief, freedom and immersion, by positioning himself and the audience as both participant and observer.

Previous work has explored Ben’s relationship to particular occult and esoteric beliefs such as witchcraft, shamanism and spiritualism; as a sceptic he attempts to test the extent and nature of his own beliefs and preconceptions.

亂 — Confusion, state of chaos.

In the ancient form of mandarin the title represents the creative processes and working practice that facilitated this exhibition. Dance artist Lucia Tong, Dance4 and Nottingham Trent University MA Framework students collaborated to create an immersive and interactive installation – interpreting the meaning of Luàn through movement, installation, photography and textiles.

In September 2012 Nottingham Trent University welcomed the World Event Young Artists 2012 (WEYA), an exciting programme of exhibitions and events as part of the vibrant and globally significant Nottingham finale to the 2012 Cultural Olympiad. This directional and unique event brought together 1,000 artists, from 100 nations, over a period of ten days and was the first of its kind in the world. It was hosted by a number of key partner institutions offering world class venues, of which Nottingham Trent University is proud to be a part.

For full details including event listings and galleries please visit the World Event Young Artists (now UK New Artists) webpages.


Throughout centuries, libraries have been perceived as places where knowledge on life and space is organized, read, and interpreted, yet at certain times, their political significance are underestimated. Public libraries have been important symbols of political power and formation of cultural identity. They play a significant role in the political struggle for independence, as centres of democratic ideals, such as free access to cultural heritage and information. As public spaces, they are essential for bringing people together to share information, and they become even more important during times of collective resistance and protests for freedom.

Curated by the Istanbul-based Collective Çukurcuma, House of Wisdom explores the political power of books and libraries in our century, and is presented as a travelling exhibition/library that explores the increasing levels of censorship on information and the current sociopolitical situation in and around Turkey. It started its journey in the non-profit art space, Dzialdov, Berlin. The show moved to Istanbul as part of the 15th Istanbul Biennial’s public program, and then to the art space Framer Framed in Amsterdam, as part of the Amsterdam Art Weekend 2017 programme.

The exhibition and public programme of events now reside in Nottingham, with a panel discussion at Primary, in June 2018, followed by the exhibition here at Bonington Gallery and across the city, see public programme events (curated by Cüneyt Çakırlar) below for full details.

Artists include: Mohamed Abdelkarim, Burak Arıkan, Mahmoud Bakhshi, Yael Bartana, Mehtap Baydu, Kürşat Bayhan, Ruth Beale, Ekin Bernay, Burçak Bingöl, Nicky Broekhuysen, Hera Büyüktaşçıyan, Cansu Çakar, Ramesch Daha, Işıl Eğrikavuk, Didem Erk, Foundland Collective, Deniz Gül, Beril Gür, Lawrence Abu Hamdan, İstanbul Queer Art Collective (Tuna Erdem and Seda Ergül), Ali Kazma, Yazan Khalili, Göksu Kunak, Mona Kriegler, Fehras Publishing Practices, Elham Rokni, Natascha Sadr Haghighian & Ashkan Sepahvand, Sümer Sayın, Erinç Seymen, Bahia Shehab, Walid Siti, Ali Taptık, Erdem Taşdelen, Özge Topçu, Viron Erol Vert, Ali Yass, Eşref Yıldırım, Ala Younis

This project is being run in collaboration with Queer Art Projects (London, UK), Nottingham Trent University’s Bonington Gallery, PrimaryBromley House LibraryNottingham UNESCO City of Literature, and Five Leaves Bookshop.


Talk: Islam in the River of Wisdoms, with Prof. Wendy Shaw
Date: Wednesday 3 October, 7 pm – 8.30 pm
Location: Five Leaves Bookshop
This talk was recorded, you can access the footage on Vimeo.

Talk: A Feeling of Loss: Mutterzunge, with Adnan Yildiz
Date: Wednesday 10 October, 6 pm – 8 pm
Location: Primary
Bookings: Please visit Primary’s website for details
This talk was recorded, you can access the footage on Vimeo

Film Screening: Gürcan Keltek’s Colony (2015)
Date: Wednesday 17 October, 6 pm – 8 pm
Location: Bonington Lecture Theatre (room 143)
Bookings: please email to reserve your place
View the trailer on Vimeo

Uplefter: A workshop on Political Depression with Aylin Kuryel
Date: Monday 22 October,  6 pm – 8 pm
Location: Bonington 146
Bookings: please email to reserve your place
This talk was recorded, you can access the footage on Vimeo

Exhibition Walkthrough with Mine Kaplangı and Cüneyt Çakırlar
Date: Wednesday 24 October, 1 pm – 3 pm
Location: Bonington Gallery
Bookings: please email to reserve your place

Film Screening: Shevaun Mizrahi’s Distant Constellation (2017)
Date: Wednesday 24 October, 6 pm – 8 pm
Location: Bonington Lecture Theatre (room 143)
Bookings: please email to reserve your place
View the trailer on Vimeo

Istanbul Queer Art Collective
Visiting Bibliophiles: Fellowship of Books
Tuna Erdem and Seda Ergül will visit NTU Emeritus Professor of Gay and Lesbian Studies, Gregory Woods. Presenting their Just in Bookcase, they will have a conversation on book loving, personal libraries, queer archiving and memory. This is a closed performance, the video documentation of this event is available on Vimeo.

Public programme curator: Dr Cüneyt Çakırlar, Senior Lecturer in Communication, Culture and Media at Nottingham Trent University. The events in this public programme are sponsored by School of Arts and Humanities, Nottingham Trent University.

Join Something Human and Little Wolf Parade for the second round of CCLAP performances in Nottingham. A series of live art interventions by international and UK-based performers will take over Nottingham streets and public spaces addressing the notion of ‘crisis’ as part of the public programme of the Krísis exhibition on show at Bonington Gallery until 9 December.

CCLAP’s 2016 series of indoor and outdoor performances is part of the public programme in association with the exhibition Krísis, curated by Something Human in partnership with Bonington Gallery, Nottingham Trent University and Little Wolf Parade.

CCLAP is a three year live art project curated by Something Human began in 2014 that instigates the sharing of the developments and critical reflections of significant and diverse live art practices in Southeast Asia and the UK, to bring the critical contexts for Southeast Asian live art practice in conversation with developments in the UK/European scenes. The project presents thought-provoking live art performances by Southeast Asian and international practitioners in London, bringing their work to both local and a wider international audience.

Friday 11 November

Rachel Parry ‘Transparent Freedoms’
Time: 12 pm – 4.45 pm
Location: Outdoor performance starting at noon at the Bonington Gallery, Dryden Street, NG1 4GG
(Finale at 4 pm at the Speakers’ Corner)

Boedi Widjaja ‘Imaginary Homeland: 谢谢你的爱’
Time: 5.30 pm – 6 pm
Location: Outdoor performance in front of Nottingham Contemporary, Weekday Cross, NG1 2GB (TBC)

Talk: Something Human in conversation with Rachel Parry and Boedi Widjaja
Time: 7 pm – 8.30 pm
Location: G.A.L., 25 Broad Street, Nottingham, NG1 3AP

Saturday 12 November

Melissa Thomas ‘Collaboration with Children’
Time: 1 pm – 4 pm
Location: G.A.L., 25 Broad Street, Nottingham, NG1 3AP

Sarah Todino ‘The Coronation’
Time: 2 pm – 5 pm
Location: Secret garden / Edin’s garden (next to Jam Café, 12 Heathcote Street, Nottingham NG1 3AA)

Orinta Pranaityte ‘Finding Place Within Displacement’
Time: 2.30 pm – 5 pm
Location: Between Heathcote Street & Broad Street

whatsthebigmistry ‘BANG’
Time: 2.30 pm – 5.30 pm
Location: Broadway Cinema (Gallery), 15 Heathcote Street, Nottingham NG1 3AL

Rachael Young ‘A Natural’
Time: 3 pm – 5.30 pm
Location: Jam Café, 12 Heathcote Street, Nottingham NG1 3AA

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