Image – Yelena Popova, Primary Studio, photo credit Michael Forbes

PRIMARY is Nottingham’s newest visual arts venue, housed in a Grade II listed former Victorian school building, and now home to more than 28 artists and artists’ groups whose work covers anything from painting and sculpture to sound, digital and performance work. During Access All Areas, the PRIMARY building will be open for everyone to explore, showcasing some of the best visual art being made in the UK, right here in Nottingham.

Events on offer during the weekend range from exhibitions, music and film to tours of the building led by resident artists, a selection of former teachers’ memories of the school collected by playwright and theatre-maker Michael Pinchbeck, plus photography, paintings and sculpture by Matt Hawthorn, Andy Lock, Craig Fisher and Deborah Swann.

There will also be a chance to see installations by 2012 Castle Open Exhibition prize-winner Frank Abbott and globetrotting digital arts collective Active Ingredient, whose members will be sharing new work made on a recent trip to Brazil’s rainforests to study the effects of climate change. By way of contrast, Rebecca Beinart promises to explore plant life closer to home with some traditional medicine-making and news about her adventures with the Wasteland Twinning Project.

With visiting Norwich collective Outpost in the building, Yelena Popova reading Tarot cards, PRIMARY’s very own artisan bakery Le Pain a la Main selling delicious food and cakes and a creepy Saturday night event in PRIMARY’s Blue Building, Function VI by Reactor,  there should be something for everyone. (The Function VI event starts 6pm, booking required:

If Saturday sounds too jam-packed, then Sunday offers a mellower vibe, as a jazzy lunch gives visitors a chance to relax in the main project space, tour the studios of PRIMARY artists like Nadim Chaudry, fresh from his recent exhibition at Lakeside’s Djanogly Gallery, Belen Cerezo, Rebecca Gamble and Tether, or view a selection of works from a forthcoming exhibition themed around geometry curated by Michael Forbes. Rhiannon Slade, whose Mediated Riots project has been making news in the city lately, will also be in dialogue with visitors.

Whether visitors prefer to check out the stalls and studios selling everything from Simon Raven pug mugs to artists’ books and Lane screen-prints, learn about Georgina Barney’s take on contemporary farming or see paintings and drawings by Mik Godley, Simon Withers and Frank Kent, there’ll be no shortage of things to do. Access All Areas offers an opportunity to uncover a whole new set of options for Christmas shopping, get back to school in the impressively scaled rooms and corridors of the PRIMARY building, enjoy the playground with the family and meet the resident artists who will all be on site during the weekend and delighted to talk about the work now being made here.

Primary, 33 Seely Road, Nottingham NG7 1NU
Opening Times:
1pm – 5.30pm Sat 20 October
1pm – 5.30pm Sun 21 October
Admission FREE

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