By April 27, 2014

Art & Photography. Leeds.

Founded and initiated by Art History students from the University of Leeds, the small group have brought together young local artists to exhibit their work in their debut exhibition ‘Artonomy’ to raise money for charity. Here is the interview with the lead founders of the group, Camilla Mason, Magdalena Moursey and Johnny Brockbank:

What is Artonomy?

Final year art historians looking to put on a show for Leeds based artists, collective mix, all for charity, just to offer a platform for young artists to get their stuff out there. Presenting a variety of mediums with an emphasis of figurative art and draftsmanship, to sort of move against conceptual art. There should be something for everyone there.

Why did you create Artonomy?

Just wanted to create an art exhibition which had a vibrant atmosphere, especially with today’s climate where it’s so hard to get new artists out there and recognised, and we wanted to give that opportunity to them. As Art History students, we feel Leeds hasn’t provided enough for people in our situation as young people into art, or at least we haven’t been aware of events that provide this opportunity for young people.

So I guess that leads nicely onto, what do you think of the art scene in Leeds?

It is very strong as there are a lot of artists working in Leeds. The music as well is always very renowned as good music. There are a lot of like-minded people, but maybe not enough events.

So, what about the name? Where did Artonomy come from?

(Laughing) Well we’ve been brainstorming for a long time. We thought we’d mess around, add some words together. We knew we definitely wanted to promote the autonomy of the artists and their work, because so often now with conceptual art the idea is so detached from the actual physical talent of the artist. So we’re trying to promote whatever medium you use, you are the artist and this is your talent. We want to artists there to explain their work, and to show their work.

What will this exhibition have? Are there other events involved?

It’s a two day event, with the first evening emphasising the artwork and the live music
performances. Then the second day will have an after party that will run into it so it’s more for the people of our age. We’re trying to make it for everyone, but also reach out to our peers. The art is definitely for everyone and it is available to buy in which all money will go to our chosen charity, Freedom For Torture and their art therapy programme. We are also
hoping to raise some of the money for Cancer Research as well.

After this exhibition then, what will the plans be next for Artonomy?

We’d love to move it down to London as well. Especially if this charity event goes well we’d like to do more events on a larger scale to get young art out there. If you are interested in Artonomy, then swing by to the exhibition on Tuesday 3 June at Belgrave Music Hall & Canteen, 12pm-12am. Everyone is welcome to the event with tickets on sale now on as well as paper tickets on the door. Refreshments such a free cider will be available as well as other stalls at the event. You can follow Artonomy @ArtonomyGroup or on

Filed under: Art & Photography