Exhibition review: No Frills @ Leeds’s Lady Beck gallery

By April 22, 2016


First of all let me introduce you to Lady Beck, some of you may know the studios/project space by its former name ‘Enjoy’. This unassuming hub of creativity is situated in the heart of Mabgate and has been commandeered by those lovely lot responsible for Assembly House, Armley. This was where I was heading to check out the preview of the ’No Frills’ exhibition on an awfully wet Friday evening.

After following the A4 paper signposts that were pointing the way, I found myself at the wide open door of Lady Beck. A steep flight of stairs, and the sound of the DJ beckoning me upwards, I emerged into a large space flooded with daylight. There was a small bar in the corner which was stocked up with craft beer and food provided by The Real Junk Food Project.
‘No Frills’ showcased the work of 6 emerging artists who are based in either Leeds or London. The exhibition was delivered in two instalments and had already previewed in London the previous month.


It was immediately clear that the work had a shared ethos; although each artist worked in a
different discipline, there was an obvious DIY ‘no nonsense’ feel to the work. The artists were able to demonstrate their individual skills in a very clean, simple way. There were a selection of mediums used ranging from film projection to screen printing. Each had their own qualities but the stand out piece for me was an impressive paper installation produced by Dan Beesley. This dominated the centre of the room, the piece was half draped over a wooden ladder and the other half supported by steel girders which ran overhead. Perhaps it was the sheer scale of the piece which gave it a gravitas but it was undeniably striking.

I also found myself drawn towards the film projection of Emma Hardaker, although there wasn’t much space for the piece to breathe (due to the crowds of people) the cinematic style was really captivating and I’ll be on the look out for more of her work in the future.
It was evident that each artist had an understanding of their craft and together they curated a well executed exhibition.

The exhibiting artists were Emma Hardaker, Dan Beesley, Steven Hodson, Gareth Thomas, Daniel Holloway and Matt Reid. For further information about the artists and the exhibition head to the website.