Here’s what to expect from Factory International, Manchester’s long-awaited $205million arts venue

Manchester’s highly anticipated opening £A new $186 million ($205 million) Factory International cultural space will take place in June 2023, it was announced today.

The new venue will be the centerpiece of the Manchester International Festival, which runs from June 29 to July 16 next year.. Its main warehouse will be used to house the immersive “You, Me and the Balloons” exhibition of inflatable sculptures by Yayoi Kusama, including polka dot spheres and dolls over 33 feet tall.

The opening will then be officially celebrated with free your minda huge immersive production by British director Danny Boyle, which runs from October 18 to November 5, 2023. Inspired by The matrixthe performance will incorporate the storytelling prowess of writer Sabrina Mahfouz, creations by Es Devlin, choreography by Kenrick “H20” Sandy and music composed by Michael “Mikey J” Asante.

The iconic center will continue to offer year-round interdisciplinary arts programming in a flexible interior that can be rearranged into different configurations. Outdoor public spaces will host pop-ups, markets and events, transforming the area into a vibrant and bustling waterfront destination.

View of the Yayoi Kusama and “Dots Obsession” installation at the Watari Museum of Contemporary Art, Tokyo. Photo courtesy of Ota Fine Arts, Victoria Miro and David Zwirner; © YAYOI KUSAMA.

The space spans 144,000 square feet and is designed by the Office for Metropolitan Architecture, in partnership with architect Ellen van Loon.

Danny Boyle called the factory “a space that gives you enormous potential. It is extremely ambitious in terms of scale. In my lifetime, seeing a new space like this open up is hugely empowering, and I hope the next generation of artists will feel that power.

From November 11-19, 2023, Greater Manchester will host ‘The Welcome’, a nine-day program of cultural events developed by local residents and intended to welcome guests to the city to experience the factory’s offering. Audiences can expect to see music, circus, fashion and art events throughout the building.

Factory also marks the UK’s biggest investment in a national cultural project since the Tate Modern opened in 2000. Almost £100 million of government funding comes from Manchester City Council and Arts Council England. £2 million ($2.2 million) was donated by the Law Family Charitable Foundation, with an additional £888,000 ($973,000) to support the Factory Academy, which will provide training opportunities for local creatives.

‘Factory International will provide a huge economic boost to Manchester, creating or supporting up to 1,500 jobs and adding £1.1billion to the city’s economy over a decade,’ the City Council leader said. of Manchester, Bev Craig.

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James C. Tibbs