Parker at the Whitworth

Oh, wow. The reviews suggested that it might be worth going to Manchester for the day, generally to see the refurbished Whitworth Art Gallery, and specifically to catch the Cornelia Parker show before it closes at the end of this month. Were they right? Yes, yes, and yes. It’a brilliant building, flooded with light, where behind a gloomy Victorian face there’s space, huge windows, the constant backdrop of the park.

And the Parker exhibition is just wonderful. So varied, so intelligent, stuff to think about and stuff to love, spread generously over half a dozen rooms. There’s a lovely story in the news coverage about the Whitworth curator falling in love with Parker’s exploded shed when she was 22, and having vowed ever since that if she ever got the chance to mount a retrospective of Cornelia Parker’s work…well, she did, and here it is, and I’m so glad we caught it. Plus, it was a nice day, and the gallery is free, and they let you take photos, and the staff are young, keen and friendly. You don’t have to believe me. Just go.