A brand new Sunday event has arrived in Sheffield, offering a mix of live music, art and DJ's. Combining art exhibitions, performance and music, The Cucumber Lounge endeavors to end our weekend with chilled out entertainment and a bit of culture.
The event takes place every second Sunday of the month at Creative Arts Development Space in Shalesmoor and is organised by Sheffield Art Forge, a non-for-profit social enterprise who offers professional artistic development.
Billy Christmas, a Fine Arts student at Sheffield University, runs the event for Sheffield Art Forge. Mr Christmas said he was inspired by Thomas Pynchon's Vineland in which there is a club called Cucumber Lounge.
Art and music synthesis
"It's playful but surreal and as it's on a Sunday evening I thought 'lounge' was quite appropriate. It's a chilled-out event that is about appreciating a bit of culture rather than getting wasted,' said Mr Christmas.
Sheffield Art Forge runs the arts programme for Creative Arts Development Space, a multi-purpose arts complex in Shalesmoor. Dan Butlin, Sheffield Art Forge curator and event organiser said this event is part of their outreach programme.
"We're trying to broaden the appeal to people who aren't the contemporary art crowd by creating a synthesis between art and music."
Dan said that they are also creating opportunities for artistic development by giving artists like Billy Christmas the opportunity and freedom to run an event with the support of Sheffield Art Forge.
The first Cucumber Lounge kicked off last night with music from Meat, Motherfolkers and Loveboat accompanying art exhibitions from Jessica Wong and Stuart Faulkner. There was also free face painting, poetry by Stan Skinny and an art performance by Stephen Milligan.
Jessica Wong's exhibition featured installation art exploring the idea of things that are beautiful and ugly at the same time. Her work explores items such as the human body, which is both beautiful in the way it works and yet its guts and gory insides are also ugly. Stuart Faulkner's exhibition included paintings with a subversive pop-cultural reference, including a painting of Harry Potter with the body of a devil imp referring to the American Christian reaction to J. K. Rowling's Harry Potter novels as evil.
The music included a mixture of folk, punk and an eclectic mix of everything in between. Performance poet Stan Skinny, who ensured the atmosphere remained light-hearted and relaxed, entertained the audience between bands.
Festivals and sandwiches
Mr Christmas has many ideas for future events. "I want to have people walking around with platters of cucumber sandwiches and I also wanted to have a poet selling custom poems for shrapnel, but he couldn't make it this time." Mr Christmas also hopes to incorporate The Cucumber Lounge into events like the SKINN festival and Tramlines or Peace in the Park.
Any bands or artists would like to get involved in future events can email Billy Christmas at email@example.com