Blank Canvas pop up space opens at 5 Blake Street

Arts programme Blank Canvas, part of the Skippko Arts Charity have just opened their second pop-up art space in the city centre. This follows their successful pop-up on Goodramgate earlier in the year.

In partnership with York BID, they are working to get some of York’s empty shops back into use on a temporary basis.

The space will be used as a pop up arts space for local artists to run exhibitions, demonstrations, talks and workshops.

Blank Canvas York Co-ordinator Phil Dodsworth is excited about the new space, which is a double fronted shop opposite the Imaginarium.

A good news story

“This is a great project to be involved in and a good news story for York,” Phil said.

“Not only does the city centre gets an empty space back in use; but visitors and local people benefit by being able to view and purchase original, unique pieces created by local artists. Other retailers benefit from the extra footfall the space generates and it brings a good buzz to the street.

“I also think it is more far-reaching than that. Tourists visit the space and learn about what York is doing with empty spaces and they carry that message with them when they return home.

“I would like to express my thanks to York BID for their support and the building owners and the Helmsley Group for allowing us to use the building.’’


Vibrant atmosphere

The gallery space will be open daily with new artists introduced on a rolling basis.

The first exhibition will feature pencil and collage portraits by Vincent Danks, textile art by Caroline Utterson and contemporary artwork by Phil Dodsworth.

Andrew Lowson, executive director of York BID adds: “Even though we have one of the lowest rates of empty city centre premises in the country, initiatives like this that bring spaces back into use help maintain a vibrant atmosphere – and demonstrate the potential of the properties to prospective tenants.

“Hopefully, other landlords and agents in the city will get on board and consider this kind of short-term use, too.”