Commissioned Artists Help Design New Art Hostel

Inspired by places they stayed whilst travelling, East Street Arts’ Jon Wakeman and Karen Watson’s mission was to create affordable yet imaginative accommodation in Leeds.
Leeds’ Art Hostel closed its doors on Kirkgate prematurely in early 2019, after being open for fewer than three years. After buying New York Studios in Mabgate, East Street Arts is now undertaking a transformation of the building to provide better accommodation from April 2021.
The 12 rooms to accommodate a total of 60 beds will provide a comfortable yet fun place to stay, offering insight into different artists’ practice and thinking. One room’s decor will focus on 1980’s alternative culture. There’ll be a sensory safe space, a room inspired by local East African communities and another inspired by Folklore.

Rhian Aitken, Hostel Manager (pictured): “In these uncertain times it is great for us to offer the people of Leeds and travellers from overseas something to look forward to!”

The artists commissioned for the 2021 Art Hostel are:

Akeelah Bertram & Julian McIntosh 
Alison Smith 
Andrew Small
Bernd Trasberger
Edwin Li, Sarah Li & Lady Kitt
Emma Bentley Fox
Jesse Wright
Jonathan Lang
Kadija de Paula & Chico Togni
Kevin Chege
Louise McKenzie 
Mandy Barker
Mary & Jiem of Wanderlust Social Club
Matilda Njau
MO Barrangi
Precious Collective 
Sayang Sound
Thompson Brand Partners


Gill Crawshaw & Mick Ward
Thompson Brand Partners
Yorkshire Property Charitable Trust
Leeds Dock
Hammerson Ltd

Dobson Construction and Richard Boothroyd & Associates ensured that the new Art Hostel came to fruition. 

No doubt the new Hostel will provide the kind of welcome which was described by a volunteer who visited from Italy: “It doesn’t matter who you are, and where you come from…you’ll always be able to find a place where you feel at home, surrounded by beautiful people. That place is the Art Hostel!”

Precious Collective at Work at The Hostel

Adam Kershaw

Adam combines his interest in Leeds with a flair for writing discovered back in school days. He says he'll tackle any topic as long as it's Leeds.

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