Celebrating the launch of Leeds @Woolgatherart vending machines

  • 0
  • April 2, 2013
Fi Dunphy

Fi Dunphy

Content and Social Strategist

Here at Branded3, we’re a very creative bunch of proud loiners and love nowt more than to feed our own passion for innovation by keeping up with what excellent people in the local community are getting up to.

I absolutely love Leeds’ rich creative scene, and was really excited to hear news of the latest Leeds-based arty endeavour: art vending machines by Woolgather!


(If you’ve not already heard of it, Woolgather is an artist-led organisation that aims to build artist support networks and bring exciting contemporary art to new audiences.)

I attended last night’s launch night at Wharf Chambers in the city centre, which was held to celebrate the launch of the initiative and its accompanying website.

With the aim of helping art reach a wider, more mainstream audience, Woolgather decided it would set about offering the general public some bite-sized pieces of art through vending machines placed around the city. Here’s the promo video they made for it:

During their speech, the Woolgather collective were keen to point out that they relied heavily on social media to spread the word of their work and to reach a wider audience… So much so, in fact, that they’ve incorporated no less than three Twitter streams into their homepage:

Woolgather Twitter streams

The medium of the vending machine was chosen because it was felt that the general public wouldn’t feel out of their comfort zone interacting with them – we’re all used to sticking a pound in, twisting the thingamybob and getting something out of the other end (mainly for toys or sweets as children or, as an adult, one of those chewy toothbrushes you get at the airport).

The Woolgather trio namechecked a few places they would be placing the vendors in, with the most notable among them being the city’s new shopping centre, Trinity Leeds. This location isn’t confirmed yet, but it would be really exciting to see the work of a collective of artists make it into such a prominent city space!

Want to see it in action? Here’s a nifty little Vine video my chum Dave Hill made featuring one of the many pieces of art we bought for our shiny quids:

You should check out the exciting project on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram, and keep an eye out for a vending machine near you! (Unless you don’t live in Leeds, of course…).

And a nice little factoid for you before I go – the word ‘woolgather’ means ‘to engage in fanciful daydreaming’. Lovely.

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