The Manchester Contemporary Art Fund Acknowledged In Prestigious Awards As It Launches Big Plans for the Fund
- The Manchester Contemporary Art Fund nominated for the prestigious 2022 Achates Philanthropy Prize and for Best Business Partnership in the Manchester Culture Awards 2022
- One of the largest philanthropic art funds outside of London
- Fourteen pieces of work worth £30,000 acquired for public display in Manchester Art Gallery
- Big plans for the art fund ahead of Manchester Art Gallery’s 200th anniversary
- A gift from the city to the city
The Manchester Contemporary Art Fund, a trust created by a set of Greater Manchester businesspeople passionate about their city and its cultural heritage, has been recognised in two prestigious cultural awards.
Founded by Thom Hetherington, CEO of Manchester Art Fair, which returns to the city this November 4th-6th, the art fund acquires work from ‘The Manchester Contemporary,’ a section of the art fair featuring critically engaged works from emerging artists, for display in Manchester Art Gallery.
Works are selected by curators of the Gallery and kept in the acclaimed venue’s permanent collection for the people of Greater Manchester to enjoy in perpetuity.
Since conception in 2017, the art fund has acquired fourteen pieces of work with a value of more than £30,000.
The collective’s efforts to support rising artists, providing them with a platform through which to achieve critical acclaim and greater popularity, has now been recognised, with The Manchester Contemporary Art Fund nominated for the prestigious 2022 Achates Philanthropy Prize; the only national annual prize that celebrates first-time supporters of culture in the UK. It has also been recognised in the Manchester Culture Awards 2022.
Speaking on the nominations, Thom Hetherington, Founder of The Manchester Contemporary Art Fund and CEO of Manchester Art Fair, said: “The Manchester Contemporary Art Fund has captured the hearts of business people and entrepreneurs across the city. People who have succeeded here in Manchester, because of Manchester. People who recognise the importance of the arts and want to give something back and to leave a mark.
“We’ve rapidly become one of the largest regional philanthropic art funds, and to be shortlisted for the prestigious 2022 Achates Philanthropy Prize and the Manchester Culture Awards is a great honour and testament to our impact. But with Manchester Art Gallery’s 200th anniversary looming we will not be resting on our laurels; we have great plans to ensure the fund will continue to grow and develop to provide a fitting celebration of that milestone.”
The Manchester Contemporary Art Fund 2021
Those plans see The Manchester Contemporary Art Fund launch an ambitious campaign to acquire more members ahead of The Manchester Contemporary art fair 2023, when it is hoped works of a significant value can be acquired to mark The Manchester Art Gallery’s 200th anniversary.
Businesses and entrepreneurs interested in joining the art fund and contributing to the city’s rich cultural history can register their interest Art Fund | The Manchester Contemporary or visit The Manchester Contemporary at Manchester Central on 4-6 November 2022.
2022 members of The Manchester Contemporary Art Fund are Thom Hetherington and Sophie Helm; James and Katie Eden; Mark Garner; Mark Hawthorn; Jeremy and Jane Roberts; Christian Anderton and Sarah Maskell; Lisa Ashurst; Jo and Tom Bloxham; Mark and Toni Hawthorn; Alison Loveday; David Blake and Lucy Noone Blake; Howard Ratcliffe and Melissa Ratcliffe; Jon Sharples; and Martyn and Val Torevell. All are from a diverse range of sectors including marketing, property, hospitality and law; and are united by a pride in Manchester and a belief that inspiring, great art should be available to all.
Works acquired to date includes:
- William Mackrell - Aquarius
- Emma Price - Mike I and Mike II
- Benoit Aubard – Homesick
- Juno Calypso’s- How Much Life is Enough
- Ian McIntyre - Re-engineered Brown Betty Teapot
- Nina Chua – Marker 210 Marker 2013
- Mark Titchner – Some Questions About Us
- Jane Benson – Toothache
- Nicola Ellis – Return to Ritherdon
- Masimba Hwati – Zitye: Second Hand Kings
- Simon Bayliss – Teapot (Positive Action / Radical Hope)
- Mario Antón – The Cross
The most recent acquisitions by Masimba Hwati, Simon Bayliss & Mario Antón are currently on display in the gallery.
Speaking on The Manchester Contemporary Art Fund’s ambition, Alistair Hudson, Director of Manchester Art Gallery said: “The Manchester Contemporary Art Fund has now become an annual institution integral to The Manchester Contemporary art fair.
“As public funding for museum collections shrinks, this growing initiative allows Manchester Art Gallery the opportunity to expand the city’s collections and support the work of emerging artists. This is a vital part of the gallery, as a civic institution, to enable and increase the cultural ecology of the city in partnership with businesses and philanthropists – as it has been for nearly two hundred years; with a collection that is relevant, develops with the times and belongs to the residents of the city.
“We are enormously grateful to The Manchester Contemporary for collaborating in this way and for contributing to a dynamic environment for artists in the region. “
The Manchester Contemporary takes place at Manchester Art Fair this November 4th – 6th with a VIP preview from 17:00 – 21:00 on Friday 4th November. The event then opens to the public on Saturday 5th and Sunday 6th November, 10:00-18:00 and 10:00-16:00 respectively.