Thursday, 22 May 2008

Unicorn - stoke-on-trent

Yes, there really is beauty in the unicorn - and a fine pint of ale too...
I happened to see one of the magnets on the till in one of Hanley's oldest pubs. The Unicorn is well worth a visit if you are in Hanley, it is on Piccadilly - slap bang in the middle of the cultural quarter. Great atmosphere, friendly barstaff and they have a great collection of Royal Doulton toby jugs hanging from the ceiling - a true potters pub!

michael callan - stoke-on-trent 4

Yes, some more images from Michael Callan, who has been wandering the city with his new camera. He has provided descriptions for why he finds each particular spots special.
Library Limestone: The staircase in The Central Library, Hanley, is finished in polished Crinoidal Limestone. These creatures, related to star fish and sea urchins but resembling some corals, lived in shallow tropical seas up to 350 million years ago. Ancient building materials for a modern building.

Fountains: Hanley Park from Avenue Road
Number 1 Adventure Place: Ever since I could read I’ve coveted this address. Wouldn’t it be wild to say you lived here?

Pagoda? : The Potteries Centre Car Park
This area once composed of three large spoil heaps (yes three) from Hanley Deep Pit dominated the view from several of my childhood homes. 'The Hollies' were composed of predominantly black shale with some red shale and littered with burning tarred rope ends (don’t know why) which children were told were weird smoky snakes that would eat through your feet if you strayed onto the slopes. When the Aberfan disaster happened they became even more grim and brooding. Below are illustrations of the contrast between that past and this present.
Birches Head: View from the top of the Forest Park with Birches Head in the foreground and Eaton Park in the background. The reverse of the view from my teenage bedroom window.
Etruria and Hartshill: The low part of the forest park in the foreground then Hanley Etruria and Hartshill. Concealed in the haze Keele which can be seen on clear days.
Tunstall: The view of Tunstall from the top.

Skate Plaza: Now I know where to find my son at any time during the weekend.

Moorhens 1 & 2: On The Forest Park Lake which prior to regeneration was an area of gullies and pools where local children would trespass and go dipping for newts and frogs. (Sorry Mum)

Steel Tree: The new approach to the Forest Park.
Steel and Real: See above.
Steel and Real 2: ditto
Thanks so much to Mike for his absolutely fantastic response to the project.

katie shipley - stoke-on-trent

Katie May Shipley's beauty spots - the allotments on the corner of Wellesley Street and College Road.

A beautiful patch of daisies: you know it's summer when...
The church at the end of College Road.
These photographs have a really lovely saturated quality - like photographs from the 70's. Thanks for those Katie.

michael callan - stoke-on-trent 3

Michael Callan has been out and about in the sun he says 'I hiked over to Bedford Lock, in Shelton on the Cauldon Canal. It was a really hot day. I could remember a piece of very witty graffiti on a nearby wall from a year or so ago. As I got there the City Works' truck was just pulling away having finished pointing the wall and scraping it clean!
Rather than waste the trip I took these.'

Wednesday, 14 May 2008

nic hilditch - manchester

Nic Hilditch's images represent the 'There is Beauty in the City' magnets first project outside of Stoke-on-Trent - yes, we have travelled to Manchester!
Nic provides us with some of her favourite spots around Manchester - how exciting!

kate lynch - stoke-on-trent

Kate Lynch has sent in four images of the Campbell road allotments which she describes as definitely her favourite place in the city. She says
'The images show the contrast between the urban environment and the allotment plot, for example the use of plastic orange roadwork mesh to support runner beans!'

michael callan - stoke-on-trent 2

The one above shows the green fist grafitti, which can be seen from the canal - and also when taking the train into Stoke from the West.
This one is the toddlers' play area in Hanley Park which Michael says of this one 'I liked this because the water motif on the fence reminded me that when I was a toddler in the early sixties this area was a paddling pool.'
The above (Steel Arch) and below (Steel Graffiti) images are taken of the sculpture outside of the Kings hall in Stoke, by Artist Liz Lemon.

'Sweet Knives' was found on the railway bridge that goes over where the Green fist is.
'The narrow straight alley at the rear of Twyfords running from the canal towpath near the Etruria Industrial Museum to Garner Street. The end is hidden behind trees so not many know it's there.'
And 'Buds of May.'
Above is 'Twyford's Back Alley, and below is 'White Star - Stoke' which was taken on the day the pub opened, Kingsway Stoke (formerly The Gordon.)

andrew branscombe - stoke-on-trent

Andrew Branscombe - the other half of the AirSpace gallery team has been out and about in Hanley finding his chosen beauty spots. This one looks like the staircase to the new sun terrace at the Sugarmill.
Above - an alleyway in Hanley and below a very unusual doorway.

Above - another alleyway and below - an advert for the Circus of horrors!

The cannon above looks like it could be one of the brass ornaments in hanley's best pub for a real ale - The Unicorn!
And finally Andy catches some ladies outside the gallery on a Saturday night.

Thursday, 1 May 2008

dave bethell - stoke-on-trent

AirSpace Director Dave Bethell has been out and about, armed with his mobile phone and one of the Beauty in the City Magnets, here are his Beauty spots:This one is the Bethesda Chapel Garden, which has recently been renovated, and is now a great community space. Dave says this reminds him of the Longhouse professional artist's development programme he went on during November, 2007. This was a brilliant opportunity involving 11 artists visiting Stoke-on-Trent with a view to coming up with proposals for art which responds to the public realm spaces of the city - the artists proposals can be seen via the Longhouse website, and the publication to document the event will be launched at AirSpace on May 16th.

The three images above were taken at the Victoria Hall on Wednesday, 30th April - during the One City event. This involved some great community engagements, as well as a chance to watch video art by some fantastic local and international artists. Dave has found parts of the hall which he feels are beautiful and then you can see Colin from Axis Festival, and Katie May Shipley and Andrew Branscombe from AirSpace.

This is Dave's girlfriends posterior. Good work Dave - good idea to use your mobile phone!

anna francis - stoke-on-trent : Lost Ted

This Lost teddy was spotted on Clough Street, which is now a demolition zone as part of Stoke-on-Trent's regeneration programme.