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Home » People and Places, The Daily Grind

Opportunities at Temple Works, Leeds

Submitted by on July 24, 2009 – 10:09 am14 Comments


Temple Works by Rick Harrison. Click on Image to see Temple Works Group on Flickr

Emma Culture Vulture here, good day! We have not been shy about our passion for this amazing building,  so with a day job hat on…

Are you an innovative artist or artist collective, and by artist we mean it in the broadest sense (visual artist/sculptor/performer/photographer/musician/playwright/designer/maker/digital/poet – insert/delete as applicable)

Temple Works in Holbeck is coming to life again. It was once the seat of the industrial revolution in Leeds and the “largest room in the world”;  a former  environmentally sustainable flax mill (yes you may have heard that sheep once grazed on the roof , and it’s true!),  and in recent times Kay’s Catalogue distribution warehouse. A Grade 1 listed building, it is now on its way to becoming the next major cultural venue for Northern England.  Artists from around the world have already been attracted on-line to produce short films celebrating Temple Works.  Our own region must now take the lead in this ambitious project, and with your involvement it has the potential to offer the truly innovative cultural mix Temple Works needs.

The main (2 acre) space at Temple Works is moving at its own pace to becoming a major mixed-arts cultural venue. But Temple Works is in reality several buildings, with opportunities for many including studio and rehearsal space.  Whilst we do not have a commissioning budget we do have something more valuable to offer to the right person/people: free installation / performing space for shows in Temple Works’ first year, free back-of-house studio / rehearsal space for the first two years, and the opportunity to be an influencing force in this ambitious cultural venture. We are also building an intern programme to provide work experience for the next generation.

We are interested in your response to what is currently an immense blank canvas, with a rich, unique and important history including working practices decades ahead of their times.  So why not come for a tour to hear more about the vision for Temple Works, and talk about how you could be instrumental in shaping the experience for future users and audiences?

We are held the last in a series of  tours on August 19th.

Final Days

You have one last chance to get in to view the landscape of leave-behind workspace detritus that defines the moment the clock stopped at Temple Works… to record that end of an era, to make a piece of art that marks the transition to a bright Temple Works future for the arts and artists of all kinds.

The work which most reflects the layered stories of this latter-stage occupancy will be featured in-situ at a weeklong on site exhibition -
Temple Works, Leeds: Final Days- that begins with Temple Works own entry into Leeds Light Night on October 9.

You have two ways in which to interact with the spaces in the Temple Works Canteen – where the left-behinds linger longest.

Choose one for your piece:

1. August 25: find a space, place, room, and record without
touching. Plan your work , hands off.


2. August 26: choose your space, place, room and make one
significant alteration, one that will define your work.

On September 14 submit your piece – audio, video, stills, installation,
art or craft -for consideration by a Temple Works panel. Your piece may

* flat-mounted images total up up to 2 x A0

* 3-D piece taking up to 3 cubic metres

* video/audio submitted on DVD lasting up to 3 minutes

On October 9: Leeds Light Night: Temple Works burst
into…light…leading into October 10-16: Temple Works Exhibition of: Final Days.

This marks the reoccupation of Temple Works by workers, from the creative and cultural industries, initially in the old Works Canteen
Cultural Hub.

Both days will commence with a short presentation on how to become part of the Temple Works story yourself, either as a resident, joining the intern programme, as part of the curatorial collective, or as one of the Temple Works Team. We will be answering questions about the When/Who/How. Please feel free to come to the presentation even if you do not intend to spend the rest of the day(s) with us.

Days commence at 9.30 and lights out at 6pm

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