David Hoyle: Please Feel Free to Ignore My Work

10 - 28 Apr 2024

Exhibition is free to drop in
Explore What's On
David Hoyle bold makeup and hands either side of his forehead against an orange background
10 - 28 Apr 2024
Aviva Studios

As part of Please Feel Free To Ignore My Work, an exhibition of David Hoyle’s art is on display in the Social during our regular opening hours:

Tuesday 16 April: 10am - 11pm
Wednesday 17 April: 10am - 11pm
Thursday 18 April: 10am - 11pm
Friday 19 April: 10am - 11pm
Saturday 20 April: 10am - 11pm
Sunday 21 April: 10am - 11pm
Monday 22 April: closed
Tuesday 23 April: 10am - 8pm
Wednesday 24 April: 10am - 8pm
Thursday 25 April : 10am - 11.30pm
Friday 26 April: 10am - 11pm
Saturday 27 April: 10am - 11.30pm
Sunday 28 April: 10am - 6pm

Please note some works contain references to suicide and addiction, and there is strong language throughout.

Exhibition is free to drop in
Explore What's On

Accessibility features available for this event: Audio Description Wheelchair Access

Part retrospective, part residency – the inimitable David Hoyle takes over Aviva Studios this Spring. The climax? A spectacular, all-star variety show

For three gloriously unpredictable weeks, David Hoyle breaches Aviva Studios with a dazzling showcase of his work to date. Part retrospective, part takeover, Please Feel Free to Ignore My Work is a celebration of Hoyle’s prolific output from the stage to the screen to the canvas.

A chance to immerse yourself in Hoyle’s world, get to know the Manchester artist through rarely seen paintings, slogan works and new commissions on display in the Social – where Hoyle also takes over our digital screens – as well as screenings of his iconic television appearances and films, all brought together for the very first time.

Can’t get enough? Dig even deeper with a series of riotous, avant-garde events – featuring talks, live painting and a classic pub quiz all hosted by Hoyle. Bringing the takeover to a climax is the spectacular finale David Hoyle: Still Got It? – an end-of-the-pier variety show from hell. Brace yourself for plenty of anarchic surprises along the way.

As a cabaret star, actor and visual artist, Hoyle’s infamous alter-ego ‘The Divine David’ transported him from radical alternative settings in the '80s to the studios of Channel 4 in the '90s. For the last four decades, Hoyle has queered the boundaries between live art, performance, theatre and cabaret – conquering nightlife around the world and working extensively in film and TV.

Please Feel Free to Ignore My Work brings together key themes that run through Hoyle’s output: gender, mental health, AIDS, revolution, decadence and the effects of capitalism. Tracing his career from the '80s to the present day, this body of work asks how and why we value our art and artists.

Ever the outsider, David Hoyle opens the door to his outrageous and moving world. Come on in, we’ll pop the kettle on.


The exhibition element of Please Feel Free to Ignore My Work is free to explore. Just pop by the Social during our regular opening hours – no booking required.

Some individual events such as David Hoyle: No Ordinary Pub Quiz and David Hoyle: Still Got It..!? require booking and an additional cost. Please explore the programme below.

What's On

  • The Grand Opening

    Wednesday 10 April, 6.30pm | David Hoyle opens a dazzling showcase of his work to date. Get a first glimpse of the riotous fun to come.
  • An Artist at Work

    Saturday 13 April, 12-2pm | The takeover continues, as David Hoyle paints a large canvas outside in the Undercroft
  • No Ordinary Pub Quiz

    Wednesday 17 April, 6.30-9.30pm | Ready to play? David Hoyle goes back to his roots for one night only with a radically alternative pub quiz
  • On Screen & In Conversation

    Saturday 20 April, 6.30pm | Lights, camera, action! David Hoyle looks back at his long film and TV career through on screen highlights and a live Q&A
  • David Hoyle: Still Got It..!?

    Saturday 27 April, 7.30pm | The artist’s biggest, most ambitious Manchester gig ever – a Saturday night variety show like no other

In the Studio with David Hoyle

The artist David Hoyle applying makeup

An introduction to David Hoyle

Close-up photo of David Hoyle having his face painted, looking at the camera
Actor, cabaret star and visual artist. Get to know David Hoyle and his many personas – plus original photography by Lee Baxter.


Image: Lee Baxter

Commissioned and produced by Factory International

Access information

Audio description for the exhibition Please Feel Free To Ignore My Work is provided by Anne Hornsby of Mind's Eye.

Please note some works contain references to suicide and addiction, and there is strong language throughout.

Our full address is Aviva Studios, Water Street, Manchester M3 4JQ and the what3words is chop.feeds.chase.

You can approach Aviva Studios along Water Street (coming from Quay Street) or along Liverpool Road (coming from Deansgate or Castlefield). Both entrances to the building have double sets of glass doors.

Once inside Aviva Studios, there is step-free access to all areas of the venue. The flooring throughout the building is smooth concrete.

The entrance to the Hall is by lift, escalator or stairs from one side of the Social beside the brick arches. There is only one escalator, and this will take you up to the Hall before the show, and will be reversed so that you can travel down at the end of the performance.

The Social has a range of seating, including those with arms and backs.

The bars in the Social and Hall Foyer have lowered accessible service points.

Our building is large. We have portable stools available to borrow if you would benefit from resting along the way during your visit.

We have wheelchair spaces and seats at standing events for all events.

There is step-free access to all areas of the venue, with lift access to the Warehouse from the Social. If you require step free seating for this event please call 0161 817 4531 (10am to 6pm, Monday to Saturday) or email access@factoryinternational.org

There are accessible toilets on all public levels of our building.

Accessible toilets are located inside the main toilets space in the brick arches of the Social.

Here you’ll find a mixture of accessible cubicles with left- or right-hand transfer, towards the back of the space, as well as ambulant accessible cubicles with grab rails, as well as a Changing Places facility.

The toilets in the brick arches of the Social are split into male, female and gender neutral – all of which contain accessible cubicles. There are shared handwashing facilities in each arch – they have soap dispensers under the mirrors to your left and dryers to the right. There are separate handwashing facilities inside the accessible cubicles.

There are additional single-room accessible toilets located in both Hall Foyers, at stalls and circle level.

There are additional single-room accessible toilets located in the Warehouse Foyer.

You do not need a key to use the accessible toilets at Aviva Studios.

Assistance dogs are welcome in our building, and we can provide mats and water bowls on request, just ask a host when you arrive. We can also take care of your assistance dog if you do not want to take your dog into the performance space. Please also refer to our assistance dogs policy.

If you are bringing an assistance dog to a ticketed event, please let us know in advance by contacting access@factoryinternational.org or calling our access phone number: 0161 817 4531 (phone lines are open 10am to 6pm, Monday to Saturday).

Travel information

Aviva Studios can be approached along Water Street (coming from Quay Street) or along Liverpool Road (coming from Deansgate or Castlefield).

Our closest stations are:

Salford Central station: 0.4 miles

Deansgate station and Deansgate-Castlefield tram: 0.6 miles

St Peter’s Square tram: 0.6 miles

Manchester Victoria station is approximately one mile from Aviva Studios

Manchester Piccadilly station is approximately 1.3 miles from Aviva Studios

Click on the links above to find detailed access information for each station.

By Bike

There are 40 bike parking spaces at Aviva Studios including space for two accessible bikes.

National Cycling Route 6 passes close to the venue and this TfGM webpage can help with route planning.

You can also hire bikes from on-street docking stations across the city centre. The closest docking stations to our venue are currently on Deansgate by Liverpool Road and (400m from the building) and by King Street (500m from the building). Take a look at Transport for Greater Manchester’s webpage for advice on cycle hire.

By Walking and Other Active Means

Aviva Studios can be approached along Water Street via Liverpool Road (coming from Deansgate or Castlefield).

If you're coming from Quay Street, the safest route to avoid construction works is via the cut-through opposite Gartside Street and past Booking.com.

All footways in the surrounding area are well lit and there are appropriate crossings across all main roads.

Pedestrians with visual impairment are recommended to approach the building via Water Street, from Liverpool Road. This route has traditional carriageway and footway design with fixed street furniture which should help with navigation to the entrance.

A footbridge at Left Bank in Spinningfields provides an accessible link across the River Irwell to Salford Central station, and a further footbridge also links Aviva Studios with the Salford area of Middlewood Locks.

Free bus services stop at all city-centre stations, and near to Aviva Studios along Deansgate, Bridge St and Quay St. Buses on these free routes are wheelchair accessible. For full details of the free bus routes, please visit the TfGM website.

There is a car park approximately 0.6 miles from Aviva Studios at Water Street Car Park, New Elm Rd, Manchester, M3 4JH.

There is also a NCP car park (Manchester Spinningfields) approximately 0.5 miles away from Aviva Studios at Spinningfields, New Quay Street, Manchester, M3 3BE. It has 35 accessible bays.

There are a small number of Blue Badge spaces along Water St and Quay St. Otherwise head towards Liverpool Road, Great John St and Lower Byrom St – close to our neighbours, the Science and Industry Museum where there are a small number of additional Blue Badge spaces.

For a list of other parking bays available in the area, visit Manchester City Council website.

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