the city talking: leeds, a-z 2016 • t—wBack
The City Talking
Every year in Leeds we print The City Talking A-Z issue, and every year it’s about more than just a list of what’s going to be good in 2016. It’s about exploring, on a personal level, what people in Leeds are thinking and feeling and getting excited about in their city; not a date-by-date list of events, but a person-by-person exploration of excitement.
It’s something that grows every year, as we find more people to ask, and more people who want to answer. With each edition, it becomes more expansive, more reflective and more immersive, uncovering more of the city than we’d seen or known before.
Come Play With Me/Hatch
A lot more of the bespoke events we saw last year, like the brilliant Leeds Indie Food. Also the Yorkshire Festival is looking incredibly exciting. I need to find some justification to stay in the Art Hostel too once that opens! I got Come Play With Me, my social enterprise record label, off the ground last year and I’m ridiculously excited about some of the releases, events and projects that are coming together under that banner.
Comic book artist
I’m looking forward to Thought Bubble — The Leeds Comic Art Festival — from 1st – 6th November. It’s the tenth anniversary this year! It’s a world renowned festival, the largest event of its kind in the UK, featuring comic art and writing in all its forms, from the likes of The Walking Dead to some of the year’s biggest blockbuster superheroes. There will be massive industry professionals from DC and Marvel comics in attendance, as well as some of the worlds biggest publishers of the medium. 2016 promises to be Thought Bubble’s biggest celebration yet with exhibitions, live drawing, comic inspired installations, free workshops, screenings, cosplay, masterclasses and a huge book crossing — plus a massive comic convention with three halls of the best self published work the UK has to offer from some of it’s greatest creative talent.
Live At Leeds — I always try to go if I’m about and it never disappoints. Sneaky Experience — they put on one-off events in cool places. Last year I watched A Nightmare On Elm Street and Alice In Wonderland at Kirkstall Abbey. Looking forward to seeing what else they do. New music from Kaiser Chiefs — because releasing new music is fun.
I will be releasing my debut mixtape, Mr Nice Guy Vol. 1, this year. This project differs from things I’ve worked on in the past, as I’ve spent around a year altogether perfecting the visuals. The mixtape features collaborations with some of my favourite artists from across the UK and I cant wait to share it with my audience! It will be released using both online and physical mediums and details of the official release date will be published via my social media networks.
I’m really looking forward to the Art Hostel opening in February and bringing a fresh visitor offer, especially ahead of our 2023 Capital of Culture bid. The first UK exhibition of US artist KAWS at the Yorkshire Sculpture Park is promising to launch us into spring in the most joyful way. In May, the film Minimalism: A Documentary About The Important Things will be released. I run a discussion group in Leeds for fans of simple living, instigated by Joshua and Ryan of The Minimalists (blog, books, tour and now film) fame, it will be ace and inspiring to see their message on the big screen. It’s Live At Leeds’ tenth year and I’m excited to see Ghostpoet on the line-up. I also can’t wait to see Mexrrissey at Belgrave Music Hall in April, which is sure to cause a beamathon. As ever, our food and drink scene is expanding hungrily, with Leeds Indie Food Festival, Cocktails in the City and Leeds International Beer Festival all looking forward to their best years yet. Exciting times!
Originally published in The City Talking: Leeds, issue 33