Wednesday, 2 December 2009

Empty shops discussion group

Bellow is a useful link to an on-line discussion group bringing together a network of people utilising or wanting to utilise empty shops:

Art in Unusual Places Launch

Art in Unusual Places is a Leeds based initiative utilising some of the many empty shops in the city by temporarily turning them into art spaces. The project will be launched tomorrow for more information visit:

Monday, 28 September 2009

National Empty Shops Conference

Unfortunately we are unable to attend this conference as it is 7 hours away and we are working but it sounds really interesting....

This will be a practical one-day event, where we'll

- find out what works and what doesn't, looking at projects across the UK
- look at what funding is available (we have a funding expert booked 
for the day)
- have lots of chance to network and share ideas, inspiration and advice

I'll be talking about the history of the empty shops movement, and 
looking at the current situation, using Coventry and their council's 
work to develop a Void Space Strategy as an example. I'll talk about why 
local councils should be supporting the sector, and the real benefits it 
can deliver to people who live, work and invest in our towns.

We'll also hear from the London-based Space Makers who are looking at 
co-working spaces, hack labs, arts spaces, social centres, community 
cafes and similar uses of space - and national group Action for Market 
Towns about how empty shops have a big effect on smaller towns

The Empty Shops Conference is on Monday 19th October, at the Richmond 
Rooms, Stoke Abbot Road, Worthing. The event runs from 11am-4pm, and 
includes a light lunch and lots of time to network.

Places are limited, so advance booking is essential. It's £10 for arts 
and community groups and individuals, and £20 for larger organisations 
and local authorities.

Email - - or call on 01903 526268 to reserve 
your place.

Tuesday, 1 September 2009

Window of Opportunity

York Museums Trust, Supported by Visit York, are piloting an innovative digital design programme to address the visual impact of empty shops in york city centre:

Once again thanks to William Davidson for this link.

Artquest: How to set up an artist led space

Many thanks to Katie Gill for the following link:

The link contains a wealth of great resources, tips and contacts to help with negotiating the use of empty shop units.

Friday, 28 August 2009

Art in Unusual Places

We received an email this morning through Leeds Visual Arts Forum about an opportunity for artists, curators and arts organisations to make use of the empty shops in Leeds city centre…


Art in Unusual Places | Call for Submissions


“Are you an artist / curator / arts organisation in Leeds frustrated by the
lack of exhibition spaces in the city? Then this could be the opportunity
for you!

Art in Unusual Places is a new scheme which opens up empty shop units and
city centre spaces for artists to use. Spaces range in size, scale and
location and include fully accessible units, shop windows and hoardings. If
you have an idea for a project, then we want to hear from you. Previous
project experience preferred, but not essential.

All spaces are rent and rate free to artists, although there may be some
costs which you will need to cover. The scheme is currently unable to pay
exhibition costs or cover your time.

If you would like to take part, please complete the application below. Art
in Unusual Places has a rolling deadline and selected artists / curators /
organisations will be served on a first-come-first-served basis. There are a
limited number of spaces available at this stage, so if something suitable
can’t be found immediately, we will contact you when it becomes available.

Art in Unusual Places is a partnership project between Leeds City Council,
the business community and cultural sector.

If you have any queries, please ring 0113 3950678.

This information and form can be downloaded from

Thursday, 27 August 2009

Behind closed Doors

Two new interesting links to projects reinterpreting unused and private spaces.