CFCCA (Centre for Chinese Contemporary Arts) is somewhere that I always pop into when I’m browsing Manchester’s Northern Quarter. Located in the beautifully renovated Smithfield Market Hall, it has two gallery spaces which are free to enter.
The galleries always feature an exhibition that you can really get your teeth into, from video art, photography to more experimental installations, all by contemporary Chinese artists (this includes mainland China, Hong Kong, Taiwan and the Chinese diaspora). Once I even saw a show wholly focused around emoji stories by Xu Bing. There was a storybook detailing a day in the life of an emoji man, and I even had a go making my own emoji language.
There’s a lovely gift shop, which I find impossible to skip every time I visit. It sells cute everything; lots of stationery, postcards, jewellery and gadgets made by Chinese as well as local designers. It’s the perfect place to find a gift for my Asia-loving friends.
CFCCA also holds regular lectures on Thursday evenings and weekend workshops. These cover tonnes of exciting topics, but coming up I’m looking forward to their smartphone film-making and sci-fi writing workshops.