NN is a contemporary art space in the centre of Northampton, UK. We work with artists at all stages of their careers to present an international programme of contemporary art and multi-disciplinary events.
Our home is at 24 Guildhall Road, Block D, in Northampton’s Cultural Quarter. We are based across the basement, upper ground and first floors of the building, which we are currently renovating into a Project Space, Education Space, Artists studio complex and a Contemporary art gallery. A Civic Reading Room by Studio Morrison has been recently added to our programme.
Our curated gallery and offsite exhibitions follow seasons, finding different ways to approach ideas and questions, creating a cumulative experience for our visitors. We frequently commission new artworks from leading and emerging artists, publish books and editions and regularly work with national and international partners to co-commission touring new bodies of work. The artists we work with range from Venice Biennale Award Winners to emerging artists and recent graduates. Our events include artist talks, screenings, creative workshops inspired by the exhibitions and practical CPD for artists such as peer critique, business support, writing and art handling. The Project Space is dedicated to experimentation, inviting anyone to apply to use it to develop their practice.
We work extensively with The University of Northampton providing a resource for students and staff and open to everyone as well as training opportunities through our Volunteer Programmes and Project Space.
We are a registered charity supported by Arts Council England as part of their National Portfolio, The University of Northampton, West Northamptonshire Council, Northamptonshire Community Foundation and SEMLEP.
To enrich the lives of the people of Northamptonshire through the arts and to be a focal point and catalyst for creativity.
Our Charitable Objectives
To provide or assist in the provision of arts events and facilities for all and to provide or assist in the provision of support of those engaged in artistic practice and to improve the quality of life of all by promoting arts events and facilities.
Creativity – We are always creatively excellent, engaging with artists and audiences to create new and inspiring work and to provoke artistic debate.
Inclusive – We are inquisitive, engaging and inclusive. We commission and collaborate in partnership with a wide range of people to make exciting things happen.
Catalyst – We are pioneering and visionary in the work we commission and present. We work with our audiences, artists, funders and supporters to ignite the imagination and to transform communities.
Collaborative – We are open and encouraging: Artists see us as the first point of call when they wish to develop ambitious work. Young artists and performers are at the heart of our vision
Read about NN Consulting here.
In 2003 a group of artists and practitioners came together to form Northampton Arts Collective (NAC). They were united by the common goal to elevate contemporary art within Northamptonshire. The group’s first flagship project was Fishmarket that launched in 2006 as an independently run, not-for-profit visual arts space in the former abandoned Fishmarket building off the market square in central Northampton. This building housed the largest gallery space outside a city in the UK alongside retail units and cafe and from 2006–2011 presented changing exhibitions of contemporary art featuring artists such as Jamie Shovlin, Bill Drummond, CJ Mahony and interdisciplinary events including music and spoken word by artists such as Alan Moore, Lyric Lounge, Don Letts and many more. The Fishmarket was given to NAC on a temporary basis and in 2012 the building was demolished and the site redeveloped as Northgate Bus Station. NAC took the programme offsite with Fishmarket at… placing artworks in various landmarks and venues across Northampton before moving into the new home at Number Nine Guildhall Road. NAC’s structure has changed significantly over the years but the desire to elevate contemporary art in Northamptonshire and spirit of multi-disciplinary collaboration remains at the heart of what is now NN. NAC now forms the board for NN, which is run by a dedicated team of curatorial and operational staff. In 2014 NN was awarded charitable status by the charities commission.