Once the largest carpet factory in the world, Dean Clough has of course a historic legacy. Something of this is reflected in the 1:40 scale, Lego brick building which is on permanent display in the galleries, where it is surrounded by vintage photographs. This seriously accurate model was begun in 2009 by Lego purists Michael LeCount and Tony Priestman (… ‘purists’ because no glue or ‘shaving’ is allowed and all the pieces have to be commercially available). It is, not unlike Dean Clough itself, a work in progress…
Another work in progress is ‘The Lost Workers’ exhibit. This was established in 1994 by international artist Christian Boltanski as part of an exhibition organised by the Henry Moore Studio. While it enjoys a post-modern dimension, ‘The Lost Workers’ is simply a collection of artefacts left by (or on behalf of) people who used to work at Crossley Carpets. The 140 items include spectacle cases, photographs, office nameplates and much more… and evoke a nostalgia that is simultaneously personal and museological. The installation is ongoing but presently undergoing renovation.
During its tenure, the Henry Moore Studio (1989–2001) also contributed items to Dean Clough’s significant collection of outdoor, ‘public art’. These are permanently on view and range from Frank Darnley’s landmark, aluminium ‘Ram’ in Crib Lane car park to the easily overlooked but internationally relevant ‘SOME LIMESTONE SOME SANDSTONE ENCLOSED FOR SOME REASON’, which is a lorry weighbridge that was re-cast by the renowned American artist Lawrence Weiner in 1993.
The Arts Charity at Dean Clough (ACDC) is the charity which manages the studios and galleries on site. A fuller description of its activities can be found on the website here:
You can subscribe here to receive gallery invitations and listings information. ACDC should also be contacted if you are interested in exhibiting or performing at Dean Clough or if you want to know more about the bursary studio scheme. The executive director of ACDC is Vic Allen who can be contacted at either firstname.lastname@example.org or on 01422 255258.