Salford Makers SHOP / Chapel Street, Salford

In 2018, subsequent to establishing Salford Makers CIC, I secured funding to launch a collaborative makers retail space on Chapel Street in Salford, aimed at commissioning artists affiliated with the Islington Mill community.

Through negotiations with a local property developer, I secured the meanwhile use of one of their vacant showhome spaces. Alongside fellow artists, I led the transformation of this space into SHOP, which remained operational for 6 months.

Beyond facilitating over 25 artists and makers through my commissioning program, affording them the opportunity to develop new products and designs, another pivotal objective was to establish a public-facing venue for artists to cultivate connections with local businesses and residents. Additionally, I wanted to foster community engagement by encouraging residents to recognise the importance and value of supporting independent traders.

Establishing a communal space in an area lacking in a sense of community and creativity constituted a fundamental aspect of this initiative. By facilitating face-to-face interactions and conversations, we enhanced the visibility of the artist community and highlighted their integral role in Salfords cultural landscape.

SHOP operated by contributing artists working in exchange for a reduction in commission taken on sales. The project emerged as a resounding success, bringing together a variety of skills and experience to create something of which I am deeply proud.

Photography by Joe Smith

Shop fittings and props by Toni Child at Stockyard North Salvage