If you are new to Bristol or an established resident then you probably already know that the city is a thriving metropolis for creative talent. 

Whether you enjoy life drawing at Café Kino, catching an alternative pop-up exhibition at SPACE gallery or catching the best contemporary art at Arnolfini. Bristol has an attitude to art that allows everyone a voice, from a degree level student to international artist.  

With such a choice of different galleries and events to choose from it was hard to reduce the list to just six events, but here they are! 

The home for contemporary art in Bristol, enjoy three floors of multi-disciplinary action from some of the biggest international names. This month will see the first instalment of Arnolfini lates, a series of immersive artist takeovers. To kick off Lates Arnolfini will be used to produce a manifesto for a future city – the Afrometropolis. Enjoy out-of-hours access to the current Basim Magdy exhibition alongside music jams, Afro-futurist shorts, manifesto making and spoken word, followed by late night music in the café bar. This is an event that should be in everyone's cultural diary.

Friday 26 May, Arnolfini, 6-12pm, £8 / £6 concs 

Visualising the Afrometropolis © Drojan Visuals  

The Island - Touch 

The Island hosts over 100 artists from Bristol whilst simultaneously providing gigs, club nights and exhibitions – all with an alternative, transgressive flavour. This month they have Touch, an unusual event which encourages visitors to touch and interact with the exhibits.

The exhibition is suitable for all ages and welcomes children.

May 29 – 4 June, 10-5pm (times vary between days so please check the website), free entry.

Common Ground, Spike Island © Stuart Whipps

Spike Island - Andrea Luka Zimmerman’s, Common Ground

A hot bed for creative talent, Spike Island houses over 70 artists in studios across the building. As per usual this month they have a superb exhibition in their gallery spaces with Andrea Luka Zimmerman’s, Common Ground. At the centre of the exhibition is the film Estate, a Reverie (2015) which tracks the long drawn out closure of the Haggerston Estate in East London. Filmed over seven years the film reveals the spirited everyday humanity of residents who are often not given a voice.

Until 18 June, Open Tuesday to Sunday, 12–5pm, Free admission

Wardrobe Ensemble – The Time Seekers 

Emerging from the Bristol Old Vic Young Company, The Wardrobe Ensemble have another adventure ready, so strap yourself in. The Time Seekers is aimed at the younger art lovers amongst us, well actually 3-8 year olds, however the way that the team have layered the show will give parents a lot of laughs and enjoyment as well. Inspired by the creative stories of children in the south-west and using the power of electro-beats and a host of outrageous characters they will bring a new curious tale of time travel to life. 

29th May - 4th Jun, 11am & 2pm (& 4pm on 2nd and 4th) | £8 (£6 for groups of 20+, under 3s go free)

a–n Assembly 

A weekend of events held mainly at the recently occupied Brunswick Club and Hamilton House. The a-n group bring one of five Assembly events to Bristol. Using barriers to practice as a point of departure, the programme was shaping up nicely, when the snap election was called right smack bang in the middle of it. Artists are invited for a programme of artist-led discussions and unconventional workshops. 

Thursday 8 – Friday 9 June, 12-10pm, prices vary, please check the website


Thorny present JohnSmith and KosmoSuna

Nestled just behind Stokes Croft the community led Cube cinema is a weekly must visit establishment for any film buff. However the space is not always used for film and next month Bristol collective Thorny have emerged onto the scene again with an event that sees JohnSmith and KosmoSuna doing their thing. Expect dark & delish experimental noise and live performance!

Friday 16 June, 8pm, £10 / £12 OTD

Published -19th May 2017