I visited The Tetley today and was impressed by the space and ambience. It's a centre for contemporary art, housed in the former 1931 Tetley Brewery headquarters. The heritage of Tetley’s was still very evident, the original features of the building have been retained - lots of oak panelling and a boardroom with chandeliers.
There's a very accommodating cafe/bar (selling cask Tetley's I'm glad to say) where the service and coffee were good - open from 9am to 11pm. The main space for the art is white and minimal - on display: "Downtime" a sculptural installation by Ben Cain and "Skittish" by Lisa Watts and Samara Scott - "a dense scenery of shapes, smells and forms through her use of unconventional materials - everyday objects stretched to their upmost capabilities". Various oak panelled rooms were housing smaller satellite installations/exhibitions.
As ever, with most "contemporary art" I feel like I'm missing something if I don't understand the concept by the visual alone and then have to read a small thesis on what the "art" is about. Should the audience have to work harder than the artist to gain anything from what is on display? Does the "art" even need an audience to be relevant?
However, Leeds definitely needs this important space and I'm proud to have it on my doorstep. I'll definitely be visiting again - art and beer in one place! What more could I ask for?