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A Modest Show : Fayre Share Fayre at The Whitworth

Fayre Share Fayre, installation view at the Whitworth, The University of Manchester, 2022.

Courtesy the Whitworth and A Modest Show. Photo credit: Michael Pollard.




“Vampire bats will die after around 70 hours of not eating. The bats feed each other by regurgitating

blood, this food sharing is simultaneously a great benefit to the receiver and a great cost to the giver. So,

for a Vampire it pays to help your neighbours whether they’re related or not, look after them and they will

look after you.” - David Attenborough

“Eating is so intimate. It's very sensual. When you invite someone to sit at your table and you want to cook

for them, you're inviting a person into your life.” - Maya Angelou

“For there to be a gift, there must be no reciprocity, return, exchange, counter gift, or debt.

For there to be a gift, it is necessary that they do not give back, amortise, reimburse.” - Jacques Derrida

FAYRE SHARE FAYRE, hosted by The Whitworth, features 42 artists with a connection to Greater

Manchester. Artworks include objects, film, painting, print and photography, where hospitality is the

shared theme. The title of this exhibition combines the word ‘share,’ a virtue and an economic

instrument, with the word ‘fayre,’ a middle english spelling of fare, a term to describe food or a market. At

first glance this is a disparate collection of food-related artworks from fish & chips to a possessed turnip,

however there are clues here about desire, altruism, sharing and our libidinal relationship with food and


Fayre Share Fayre is the headline exhibition for ‘A Modest Show;’ the official collateral event for British

Art Show 9 in Manchester. In response to the curatorial narratives of the BAS9 programme, A Modest

Show presents a four month programme including over 100 artists, across 27 venues, with 43 new


Liam Ashworth, Iain Andrews, Andrea Booker, Robin Broadley, Angelina May Davis, Alena Ruth Donely, Claire Dorsett, The Artist Taxi Driver, Lee Elias, Violet Emsley,  Alison Forde,  Leo Fitzmaurice, Pat Flynn, Ryan Gander, Raimi Gbadamosi, Parham Ghalamdar, Rachel Goodyear, Mary Griffiths, Linda Hemmersbach, Matthew Houlding, Jamie Holman,  Richard Dean Hughes, Kevin Hunt, Hilary Jack, Horace Lindesey, Robin Megannity, Ahmed Mohammed, Ruth Murray, Claus Oldenburg (Private Collection), Sean Penlington, John Powell-Jones, Magnus Quaife, Benji Reid, Ken Reid, Luke Routledge, Scottee, Chester Tenneson, Katie Tomlinson, Alistair Woods, Anon (Judy Chicago “Dinner Party Workers” 35mm Slide)

Established in 2022 A Modest Show was devised as a year long programme of artist-led activity an official parallel show to the British Art Show 9. Division of Labour's Nat Pitt and Second Act gallery's Alex Zawadzki created a manifesto of sorts, a satirical call out to artists to respond with themes of food, hospitality, consumption and dining... we invited the city to; EAT MANCHESTER ARTISTS! 

We now enter into our 2023/24 programme with a new ambition to strengthen and develop the relationships between the visual arts ecology in the North-West & Midlands of England & Wales and local and international collectors. Working independently we will continue to build on the work of other organisations, past and present, to develop an art market and share our networks with artists and arts organisations in this area.
This new programme includes a map, which along with our website are the beginnings of a new legacy for Manchester. A go-to resource for people to find Manchester’s artist-led venues, events and spaces all year round.

A Modest Show is an independent curatorial platform to develop and support the relationships between Artists, Curators, Arts Organisatons, Museums & Galleries, Academics & Writers and Collectors.

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