Situations initiated the Bristol Art Weekender in 2014 which expanded to include Bath in 2015.

Friday 2 – Monday 5 May 2014
The inaugural Bristol Art Weekender was a four-day programme ran for four days celebrating art across the city and showcasing Bristol as one of the most vibrant and flourishing centres for art in the UK. The Weekender’s FREE programme of exhibitions, events, talks and walks was carefully selected to blend internationally significant artists with emerging talent, giving visitors a chance to experience a real diversity of exhibitions, public artworks, performances, interventions and studios over the weekend. From Luke Jerram’s 300-foot slide down Park Street, to an intimate performance of Franz Liszt’s Legende #1 for 70 songbirds in one of Bristol’s oldest chapels (Annika Kahrs), Bristolians discovered one-off performances and site-specific installations in unexpected locations.

Other highlights included Jeremy Deller’s Venice Biennale exhibition English Magic at Bristol Museum & Art Gallery, The Observers ‘Rising Art Star of 2014’ Andy Holden at Spike Island, and a temporary pavilion built by young people in Gainsborough Square, Lockleaze. For full details, download the guide.

Friday 30 October to Sunday 1 November 2015
In its second year, the Art Weekender expanded to include the unique cultural offerings of Bath, to celebrate the vibrancy of the visual arts in the South West. Both Bristol and Bath offer two distinctive contexts for enjoying outstanding contemporary art, from international exhibitions and unique gallery and museum collections, new commissions and special performances, to open studios and public art. Over 50 artists and arts organisations offered the chance to experience the two cities as never before. 

Highlights included:
Theaster Gates’ first UK project, Sanctum, a temporary structure built out of the ruins of Temple Church, Bristol with the sounds of the city being performed 24 hours a day, for 24 days

Quilt Cowboy
by Alexander Stevenson, a new commission for the Art Weekender, inspired by the collection of quilts and textiles at the American Museum, Bath

Bath Artists’ Studios led 13 minutes of Life Drawing on Trains on the short journey between Bristol and Bath. Hundreds of people were simultaneously life drawing in the Great Western Railway carriage
Exhibition at Arnolfini of acclaimed Turner Prize Winner, Richard Long’s TIME AND SPACE


We gratefully acknowledge the support of Arts Council England, Art Fund, Bristol City Council, Blink Giant Media, Bristol Ferry, Bristol Festival of Ideas, Clifton Hotels, Frameworks and the Paul Hamlyn Foundation.

Our partners include: 44AD Artspace, Art in Bearpit, Architecture Centre, Arnolfini, Aural-l, Bath Artist’s Studios, Bath Museums Partnership (including the American Museum, Bath Fashion Museum, Bath Spa, Holburne Museum), Bath Spa University, BEEF, Bristol Museums Galleries and Archives, Bristol City Council Public Art Programme, Bristol University, Cleveland Pools, Field Art Projects, Future Perfect, G39, Hand in Glove, HO-ST, ICIA, Jamaica Street Studios, Knowle West Media Centre, Lockjaws, ONOMATO, Royal West of England Academy, Spike Island and Associates, The Kiosk Project, Trinity Centre, Visual Arts Southwest, Watershed Arts Trust.

The Art Weekender was supported by the Bristol & Bath Cultural Destinations Project, part of a national initiative created by Arts Council England and Visit England.