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  1. Central 3 in main entrance
    40 Years of the Future

    Come and hear about Castlefield Gallery's 40th anniversary year of programming coming up in 2024 which will see the return of art works from the gallery's very early days being shown alongside new works by a younger generation of artists. Matthew will discuss examples of how and why artists are finding it important to revisit and reimagine the past in their work and how this might inform the way we think about the future.

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    In Conversation: Ian Rayer Smith

    Winner of the 2014 Warrington Contemporary Prize and shortlisted for the Greater Manchester Arts Prize 2016, Ian Rayer-Smith is a contemporary expressionist whose diverse, dynamic canvases have found audiences all over the world – appearing in group shows in London, San Francisco and Los Angeles this year alone. Hosted by award-winning arts journalist and editor Polly Checkland Harding, this interview uncovers how each one comes as a surprise: standing in front of a new work, Rayer-Smith never knows where it will go. Instead, he channels music, emotions, and visual references from the Renaissance through to contemporary art – deliberately colliding the preoccupations of the Old Masters with an abstract expressionist’s attention. Discover how painting led to freedom from a stifling career in business, the importance he places on spontaneity – and how art can be an inroad into self-understanding.

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    In Conversation: Rogue Women
    Rogue Women was founded by artists Jen Orpin and Margaret Cahill with the aim of helping to redress the gender imbalance in the art world. Two hugely successful exhibitions of work by female artists later, Rogue Women is coming to The Manchester Contemporary: in this panel discussion, hosted by award-winning arts journalist and editor Polly Checkland Harding, Jen Orpin and Margaret Cahill are joined by fellow exhibitors Jo McGonigal and Lindsey Bull to discuss why women artists remain underrepresented – and how Rogue Women is working to change this. Each an outstanding artist in their own right, they have variously shown at national and international galleries, won multiple awards and been chosen for public and private collections – and together, they are a powerful argument for better representation for women in the art world. Discover the common themes between their practices, and the transformative power of collaboration in this 45 minute conversation, free to Manchester Art Fair ticket holders.
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    In Conversation: Tony Heaton OBE
    Join a conversation between Paulette Brien (Curator at Grundy Art Gallery, Blackpool), and Artist and Disability Arts and Rights activist, Tony Heaton OBE - as they unpack some of the key concerns within the artist's practice and explore the disability arts movement, past and present.
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    In Conversation: Victoria Coleman
    Victoria Coleman has had an unusual career. From working as a van driver to making props for Star Wars in Jim Henson’s Creature Shop, and from going solo with her own Knitwangling Productions to painting acrylic portraits of everything from pets to her alter-ego Veronica, she has often followed her instincts down new and unexpected paths. This interview, hosted by award-winning arts journalist and editor Polly Checkland Harding, tracks the span of Victoria’s career, her creative process, and her playful way of seeing the world. What was it like to work on the giant spider in Harry Potter? What’s the story behind the name ‘Knitwangling’? And how did a photograph by a French photographer lead to Victoria discovering her muse? This 45 minute talk, free to Manchester Art Fair ticket holders, revels in these questions – and celebrates the spontaneity that guides both Victoria’s art making and career choices.
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    Info-graphics of the Everyday
    An in-conversation with artists'Chad McCail and Amrit Randhawa (Taxi Cab Industries), chaired by Robert Parkinson (the Whitworth)
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    Irwell: Afterlife with Liam Spencer

    This presentation is an introduction to Liam Spencer's work, and an exploration of the Irwell and its valley from its source in Rossendale to its destination at Salford Quays and the Manchester Ship Canal. Paintings, drawings, photography, and film will reveal its post-industrial landscapes and the wildlife which thrives there, often discreet and hidden from view.

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    MAKE ' Manchester, Art, KnownOrigin and eBay.

    'KnownOrigin x eBay

    How Manchester's art scene, combined with the cities technological excellence spurned the 'digital art marketplace' KnownOrigin.

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    Williams BMW Presents The Recharge in Nature Project

    Join Williams BMW on a journey through art and nature with three professional artists working in and around the Peak District National Park, who created an immersive backdrop for their installation at this year's Manchester Art Fair.

    Williams BMW