We always strive to improve our Festival Square from Festival to Festival – and for 2017 we are excited to be working with Manchester Metropolitan University’s School of Art for the 3rd Festival in a row – on our most ambitious project to date.

Led aesthetically by the design of Paloma Gormley (Practise Architecture) and Nicholas Henninger (Office for Crafted Architecture), the students were asked to take a holistic design approach to Festival Square, using a range of designated ‘house materials’ – and to update and improve the interiors of the Pavilion and the Glass House.  The project has led to a new range of furniture being designed for the spaces, as well as light fittings, floor designs and bar frontages.

Through a number of special workshops, led by OH OK LTD – a design agency who believe in participatory placemaking – at NOMA’s public fabrication workshop PLANT, the furniture and artifacts designed will be handmade by participants. Only hand operated tools will be utilised in their production and no prior skills or knowledge are necessary. Skills learned may include:

  • How to recognise, select and understand the materials we’re using
  • How to work as team to produce a product
  • How to work safely within a workshop
  • The importance of structural integrity in furniture and using that integrity to influence the design
  • Operating simple hand tools, drill, router, saw, chisel, sander
  • Using an industrial sewing machine
  • Finishing methods
  • Applying a maker’s mark
  • An insight into space planning and how the furniture we build affects it

Everything made during the workshops will be found on Festival Square between 29th June and 16th July 2017.

OH OK Ltd will be running the workshop space and facility, called PLANT, on Sadlers Yard,  for people to help input on a material level into the ever-evolving neighbourhood of NOMA and beyond. An 18-month program will offer an array of activities, usually making ones, that will allow members of the public to engage with the conception, design and fabrication of small to large objects.

To sign up for OH OK Workshops for MIF, please book a place on the dates below:

Saturday 20th May

Sunday 21st May

Sunday 28th May

Sunday 4th June

More dates added!

Friday 26 May

Friday 2nd June

Saturday 3rd June

Official partners

Public sector partners

Media partners