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Art at the heart of new The Tetley and Leeds Beckett partnership

Students from Leeds Beckett University are to be given a valuable boost to their creative practice and career prospects with the launch of a new partnership between The Tetley and the University.

To mark the partnership The Tetley’s central atrium exhibition space was re-named the Leeds Beckett Gallery.

Extending The Tetley’s commitment to supporting early career artists, the centre for contemporary art and learning will work with Leeds Beckett University to develop collaborative projects and opportunities for arts students keen to develop future careers in the creative industries.

Students and staff at Leeds Beckett University have been working together with the Programme and Marketing teams at The Tetley – housed in the former Tetley Brewery Headquarters – on a number of projects including a series of brewing performances and interventions by Leeds Beckett performing arts students with the Theatre School and a series of live film briefs with the Film School have already been bridging the gap between study and practice.

Now, with a formal partnership in place, The Tetley will offer opportunities to Leeds Beckett University’s undergraduates from a range of disciplines including film, design and fine art to boost their experience and future employment prospects.

One of these opportunities is already underway in developing a year-long design residency at The Tetley. In its inaugural year, the post has been won by BA (Hons) Graphic Arts and Design student Ellie Polston who, as resident Designer at The Tetley, now works alongside the in-house Marketing team to design and create all marketing materials for The Tetley across exhibitions, events and Bar & Kitchen.

Ellie’s experience at The Tetley has led to her growing a network across the creative industry in Leeds and establishing her independent practice, working on a number of creative projects across Yorkshire.

This has included new brand development briefs for a new independent ice cream company; a rebrand project for an advertising agency and involvement in designing promotional materials for regional community partners.

The residency has allowed Ellie to develop her professional portfolio in a real-life setting: an important first step from graduate to professional practitioner.

Jean Dent, deputy chair of The Tetley, said: “The Tetley is at the heart of a creative renaissance along Leeds’s ‘South Bank’ leading the way for the city to broaden the scope of its artistic and education programmes and ensuring a strong and sustainable future for emerging artists.

“Culture and creativity are the vital lifeblood of a city, often cited as a reason to visit, work or study there. This partnership is great news for The Tetley and our audiences who will have the chance to witness the city’s new generation of talent in the making.

“This is a fantastic time for artists and the culturally curious in Leeds as the city gear up to bidding for Capital of Culture in 2023 and The Tetley is keen to play its part.”

Professor Mohammad Dastbaz, pro vice chancellor and dean of the Faculty of Arts, Environment & Technology at Leeds Beckett University, said: “We are delighted to be launching our partnership with The Tetley and in particular the Leeds Beckett Gallery.

“The partnership is a great fit given our expertise in creative arts education and will undoubtedly bring fantastic benefits for our students; they will have access to some unique opportunities for work placements and internships in addition to exposure to larger audiences and of course many opportunities for joint projects. I’m very excited about the future opportunities our organisations can create.”

Currently on show in the Leeds Beckett Gallery and throughout The Tetley is critically acclaimed ‘The Feast Wagon’, a group exhibition featuring new commissions and installations by Simeon Barclay, Delaine Le Bas, Lubaina Himid and Susan Walsh.

The exhibiting artists and co-curators will be in conversation on Thursday to discuss themes from the show. Tickets must be booked in advance from

Jean Dent, Pippa Hale and Mohammad Dastbaz

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