• March 26, 2004
  • Posted by Marc

THE ESSENTIALS #29 - The Essentials of Manchester England

Essential Guide to Manchester, England by United Art City



1.  Favorite Location to See Street Art

/>Stickers are everywhere, but especially concentrated around the northern
quarter (an area of streets dominated by independent record shops, skate shops,
clothes shops, galleries and bars and cafes etc ) and Oxford Road ( the start of
the student area.


/>Manchester has about 60,000+ students). Graff isn’t as immediately obvious,
though tags are everywhere around the centre.  However if you walk though the
underpasses off of Oxford Road to Hulme and/or Bruswick there are plenty of
large full colour pieces. Rochdale (a borough to the North of Manchester) has
legal walls in all of it’s underpasses so you can park you’re car and walk
through here at any time of the day and find someone painting summat. Aside from
that, take some public transport somewhere and you’ll see something worth



2.  Favorite Art Gallery

The href="http://www.richardgoodallgallery.com/ ">Richard Goodall Gallery. Photo
exhibitions and classic rock posters.

The href="http://www.whitworth.man.ac.uk/ ">Whitworth Art Gallery - there are a
lot of galleries in town, a lot showing edgier work or more famous work but I
this gallery. On the edge of student land and primarily free this
venue hosts a lot of varied shows…always something to
stimulate the mind
as well as to look nice. great building too, with huge windows…if the light is
in the right place it is
swamped with sunlight and you could be in
California and an episode of Columbo.

3.  Favorite Place to
Buy Paint and Supplies

There is always a debate about this
on UAC, but people from all over the north west seem in general to head for Exit
- a
skateshop on Oldham street with graff panels outside.  You can mail
order Graphotism cheap too.

4.  Favorite Local

href="http://www.d.eckersall.btinternet.co.uk/">Magma sells loads of arts
magazines, but a new local one has just popped up called Cake (?2.80) that is
reporting exclusively on Manchester arts. 

5.  Favorite
Place to Drink

So many choices that this is totally
unrepresentative of everyones’ tastes but here are some good bars to drop into
if in Mancland; Matt & Phreds Jazz bar is either relaxed as hell or full of
great music., Cord, BigHands, and both the KroBars,are all worth checking out
for an independent non-chain bar experience.  And for a scuzzy punk expereice
check Grand Central on Oxford Road. (There is even a real Rovers Return in
Salford - home of Coronation Street - if you stroll just a few minutes away from
the posh shops on Deansgate. )

6.  Favorite Place to

Fuel - vegeatarian coffee shop. The food is really good. 
They have a vast collection of music that they play on random
rotation (
or so they boast…always sounds like coffee background lite to me…but there
you go…better than Kylie ). Great
coffee. Definitely don’t feel crushed
by the forces of corporate globalism or anything like that in here.

/>Fuel Cafe Address:
448 Wilmslow Road

7.  Favourite Architecture


/>Piccadilly train station - has been renovated and is like a science fiction
film set right in the town centre. Old Victorian
architecture - huge cast
iron rich green columns and huge skylighted dark roofs - butt right up to 21st
century airport chic.
Also right on the edge of Ancoats so leads away from
safe town into real Manchester and lovely delapidated warehouses. Light & dark
all at once. Also has the only underground metrolink station which feels all ’
proper ’ big city transport system.


/>Urbis is our new urban museum, and our show piece building…for the time
being, but more stuff is going up all the time.  The ground floor hosts art
exhibitions - quite often street art based shows.