Past Exhibitions


Below is a list of previous exhibition programmes at The Turnpike Gallery.


New Art from Leigh & WiganOPEN exhibition

28 January 2023 - 18 March 2023

The Turnpike Gallery’s ‘OPEN’ exhibition showcased exciting new artwork by professional and amateur artists living or working in the borough of Wigan.

Selected from open submission by an independent panel of judges, the exhibition presented 75 artworks by 66 local artists. A diverse range of works were included, from paintings, drawings and prints, to ceramics, sculpture and video. Some artists are established professionals who have exhibited across the UK and others are just starting out, presenting their art in public for the first time.

The Turnpike Gallery’s ‘OPEN’ exhibition linked with Wigan Council’s Cultural Manifesto ‘The Fire Within’ which has a focus for this year of ‘Every Community needs a Stage’. In addition to bringing national and international artists to Leigh, the Turnpike Gallery has nurtured local talent over the past 50 years.

Geometric Light by Zarah Hussain

Digital and light-based artworks 2005-2022

  • 15th October – 17th December 2022

zarah hussain artwork“There is a very interesting relationship between generative, computer-programmed art and Islamic art, starting with the simple fact that in both, patterns and numbers underlie everything.” - Zarah Hussain

The Turnpike Gallery is delighted to present a stunning exhibition by award-winning artist Zarah Hussain. Originally from the north-west UK and now based in London, Zarah has previously shown her paintings at the Turnpike Gallery alongside the sculptural work of Halima Cassell in Araam in 2010.

Geometric Light is a specially selected exhibition with the artist and will present digital projections and animations from 2005-2022 alongside her most recent paintings.

Zarah was the first artist to explore how algorithms could be used to animate Islamic pattern. In 2005 she was commissioned by Cartwright Hall in Bradford to develop her first animation using computer code. She has subsequently exhibited throughout the UK and internationally, including the Barbican Centre and South Bank Centre in London; Barnaby Festival, Macclesfield; Peabody Essex Museum, USA; and the Sharjah Museum, UAE. In addition to her digital work, for which she has collaborated for many years with Cris Thompson, Zarah continues to make paintings and sculpture as an integral part of her practice.

Geometric Light will include Invisible Threads – a wall-based installation of 54 light boxes filled with programmable LEDs; Beauty of Abstraction – a projected animation from 2005; Sharjah Spectrum – a projected animation which has infinite combinations of colour; Breath – a projection of a changing dodecagon evoking the inhaling and exhaling associated with breathing; and a series of new Breath paintings.

“We live in a world where we are constantly ‘on’. There is such benefit to just slowing down and being quiet. Taking time to focus to look inwards, to sit and breathe quietly, to meditate, to contemplate. There’s a real power in reclaiming time for yourself.”

Visitors to the Turnpike Gallery will be able to ‘slow down’ and relax in front of these wonderful art works.

Watch a talk with Zarah - Geometric Light (external link)

Creating Space: imagine, make, play

  • 5th July – 10th September 2022

creating spaceJoin us for a unique event in the Turnpike Gallery this summer, complementing the wonderful cultural programme in Leigh which celebrates the UEFA Women’s Euros 2022 football tournament.

Pop into the gallery and explore a variety of art materials and techniques, including textiles, sculpture, model making, flags, banners, collage, badge-making, embroidery and more. Help make the exhibition grow over the summer!

Each week from 5th July to 13th August a different artist will be ready to welcome visitors between 10am and 4pm, Tuesday to Saturday. Our resident artists are Shonagh Short, Molly Major, Emily Simpson, Grace Eardley, Emma Blackburn and Hannah Bold.

From 15th August to 10th September, Creating Space will continue, and visitors will have the chance fir further hands-on activities and add more artworks to the exhibition.

In addition, the official UEFA Trailblazers exhibition of artists’ posters will be on display until 21st July. Invited artists from the participating nations in the tournament have designed a colourful collection of dynamic images celebrating women’s football in their country. Leigh is one of only a few venues to host the exhibition!

Drawn In

  • 2nd April – 11th June 2022

Drawn InDrawn In is an exhibition celebrating 50 years of the Turnpike Gallery, presenting a wide range of drawings and works on paper by artists who have been here before, and pointing towards many years to come of art and culture being made, shared and celebrated with our communities.

This exhibition of 50 art works shares with visitors many examples of drawing’s function. From honing visual motifs for completed artworks, to 'thinking out loud'. There is an intimacy, a directness to the works on show, as well as a variety of media, scale and size. Some pieces embody an unfinished, exploratory process, while others display a refined presentation of ideas.

We're grateful to the many artists who have responded so positively to being included in this exhibition, and to Flowers Gallery, London; Kirklees Collection: Huddersfield Art Gallery; Collect Art, Lymm; Hales Gallery, London; Parafin, London; The Lowry Collection, Salford and Wigan Council for their generosity in lending artworks.

Artists in the exhibition include: Norman Ackroyd, Helen Bendon, Tony Bevan, Andrew Bick, Alan Birch, Halima Cassell, Suki Chan, Louise Clennell, Andee Collard, Vikki Crompton, Layla Curtis, Kate Davies, Norman Dilworth, Amanda Faulkner, Paula Fenwick, Leo Fitzmaurice, Elaine Fox, Jo Gorner, Richard Hamilton, Josef Herman, David Hockney, Richard Hughes, Glenys Johnson, Steffan Jones-Hughes, John Keane, Stewart Kelly, Naomi Kendrick, Richard Kidd, Masakatsu Kondo, Tania Kovats, Amanda Lavery, Hannah Leighton-Boyce, L S Lowry, Susie MacMurray, Theodore Major, Kenneth Martin, Ruth Moilliet, Henry Moore, Jeanette Orrell, Eduardo Paolozzi, Aaron Pearce, Tom Phillips, Jill Randall Michael Rothenstein, Rebecca Sitar, David Stanley, Ian Stephenson, Claire Weetman.