Love Arts Festival 2017 took place between 4-18 October and was full of exhibitions, workshops, gigs, dance, drama, film, music, discussions and more.

You can download a PDF of the 2017 Programme here

Take a look at what happened each day by looking at the Diary.

The Festival was split into 3 sections: SEE IT, WATCH IT and DO IT


Love Arts supports groups and individuals who have had personal experience of mental health issues and who want to show their artwork. Loads of bars and cafes offered their wall- space for artists to show work. Look out for new venues (The Brunswick, The Old Red Bus Station, Union Coffee House) alongside venues who have supported Love Arts for many years (Swarthmore, Arch Cafe, Sela Bar). We also returned to the Light for our annual Highlights show – around 60 artists showing work together . And we were particularly excited about taking over a unit in the St John’s Centre.




There was a really strong performance strand in this year’s Festival. Several local theatre groups performed their work, ranging from established companies like Red Ladder  to newer groups like Fish & Ram and Pieces of Us. We were delighted to welcome back London-based theatre maker Yolanda Mercy. There were also great films in the programme. The wonderful Hyde Park cinema hosted our Weepie and there were be short films from the very talented Gage Oxley. And there was a very intriguing performance by Opera North. To round off the Festival we  closedwith our very own cabaret – a taster of some wonderful pieces from Leeds performance artists.





This was your chance to get creative and get involved. We had a whole host of artistic workshops to choose from: you could sketch, dance, write, stitch, paint, sing, even go for a “psychogeographical walk”! Love Arts is on a mission to explore the idea that being creative is good for you. There were also chances to ponder and debate. We explored the idea of Journeys and how we record them through writing, music and art, with local artists, authors, academics and people who’ve had first-hand experience of mental ill-health. A new addition to the Festival programme in 2017 was the Love Arts Pop-Up outside the Art Gallery (p.14).