Artist CV/Contacts

debbie sharp

Artist / Curator Debbie Sharp

co-Founder of The Penthouse Artist led experimental art projects.


email :

twitter   @iAMdebbiesharp


MA photography Merit Manchester School of Art  

BA Hons Visual Arts and Culture Salford University 

Art positions

10/2018 - Present Sound Artist for the Oral history's project West Yorkshire Queer Stories. “West Yorkshire Queer Stories is a Heritage Lottery-funded project collecting & preserving LGBTIQ+ experiences and objects. For too long LGBTIQ+ histories have been ignored or seen as unimportant, but we aim to change that!”

01/2017 - 10/2018  Lead artist and curator along side artist Rosanne Robertson and The Penthouse our artist led project space, of Bill Drummond’s The Curfew Tower Cushendall Northen Ireland.

 03/2016 - 10/2016  Lead artist of FREEHAUS Art School Llandudno. Working with Cultural Action Llandudno (CALL) and Arts Council Wales. To develop a disused building in Llandudno and bring it back to life by creating a new hub of community creativity with a art school style learning and social space.

“Our vision is to take Llandudno and its “Lost Spaces”, disused /derelict buildings and plots of land and through thought provoking and exciting programming develop discussion which will ultimately lead to them being reimagined and revitalized in a way that benefits all.”

2012 - present  co-founder The Penthouse 

Artist studio and Project space Manchester.

2009-2012 Co-founder and Director/Curator Kraak Gallery Manchester


03/2019 A-N Professional Development Bursary.

01/2018 Arts Council England Grants for the Arts Funding for project.

 Lesbian Visibility in the Contemporary Landscape.

05/2016 Arts Council England Grants for the Arts, Research and Development.

With-In-Memoriam RD project. A period of research and development. Exploring ideas of death, consciousness & remembrance.

03/2016   A-N Professional Development Bursary.

(funding artists to undertake a period of self-determined professional development. The awards can be used for artist-to-artist or curatorial critique, or to support the learning of new skills or research into a new area of practice.)

01/2014 - 01/2015 Arts Council Funding, Grants for the Arts. For self directed project  “a packet of crisps and a bottle of coke”

A in depth research project and subsequent exhibitions and series of public events across 3 key cities- Manchester, Bradford and Leeds.The project takes my encounter with Patricia Atkinson a Yorkshire ripper victim as a starting point and also giving me the title of the project, has Patricia bought me a packet of crisps and a bottle of coke at my uncles pub the night before she was murdered. exploring my fear and growing up in Bradford at the time of the Yorkshire ripper. looking at the sights and sounds that shaped the landscape of this time whilst looking at my own personal fear and the frailness of life.

Exhibitions/live works

03/2019 Bury Art Museum DYKE Propaganda performance for PRINT Live

02/2019 Leeds Museum My Butch performance for lgbtq+ history month

12/2018 The Gallery 78 in Reykjavik Iceland Queer Instructions photography exhibition

11/2018 Artist in Resident Undercliffe cemetery live performance mourn memory hold tight what binds us.

and installation with Sound Sculpture The Relict.

8/2018 The Curfew Tower Performance and installation Queer aversion Cushendall Northern Ireland

07/2018 Hebden Bridge arts festival sound sculpture SPEAKHER

01/2018 HOME Manchester Anti-Monumentalalism live performance, a reverse sculpture that pairs raw materials of construction and the performance of destruction - reducing old hierarchical individualistic monumentalism to the communal experience of dust.

12/2017 HIVideo New commissioned film work "A Trace" for HIVideo at Paradise works for international world aids day part of Balaclava.Q - A Global Exhibition of Video Art for World Aids Day. HIVideo is the moving image strand of Balaclava.Q- an international Queer Art Project and collective.

08/2017 Queer Art Show 5: Revoke explores what it means to REVOKE- to invalidate, reclaim and reverse in the anniversary year of 50 years since partial decriminalisation of the homosexual act with the Sexual Offences Act 1967 . Curated by artist and director of Manchester’s artist & Dyke led project space The Penthouse Debbie Sharp - QAS5 brings together ideas of restrictions, criminalisation and fighting for freedoms within LGBTQ+ lives. 

07/2017 REVOLT The Penthouse Manchester, brought to you in collaboration with Manchester’s finest LGBTQ+ and deliver Queers against Facism in action. Curated as part of Manifest 17 Supported by Arts Council England Grants for the Arts 

05/2017 With-In Memoriam Todmorden Death Festival. Performance in Centre Vale Park in the arches under lovers walk and art installation inside Todmorden Unitarian Church.

01/2017 Threshold performance VOID gallery Derry. Handing over of The Curfew Tower curatorship 2017 to The Penthouse. Part of the exhibition “Nothing but Longing” a accumulation of the overall experiences of the israeli artists residing in the Curfew Tower Cushendall for 2015-16.

10/2016 Paradoxparadox HOME Manchester. Five days 8 hours a day live performance working with Brazilin artists Rafael Abdala and Jessica Goes and selected Manchester artists.

9/2016 Might and Main The Penthouse Manchester. Might and Main Exhibition and symposium “a project exploring the mechanisms and celebrating the outputs of the artist led- researching the importance of place and space to artistic production”. I created two Installations Truth and Light and unconscious mur mur.

5/2016 The People’s History Museum, Manchester After Hours Event

New commission of Live performance “ THE WORKER” in response to PHM archives of Artist Cliff Rowe works. Also additional new  Film/sound piece From the hand of the artist,To the hand of the worker.

3/2016 Live Art Bistro Leeds 

Live performance for event "A-Wake, closing event for New Work Yorkshire (an artist led network of practitioners making diverse and vibrant work") 

11/2015 “ON HIGH ALERT” Solo Exhibition, East ST Arts art space Leeds

Live performance and exhibition + sound workshop and talk.

10/2015 Sluice art fair Bargehouse Oxo Tower London 

Live performance and exhibition of new works “Murmuration”

07/2015 The Whitworth Gallery Manchester (museum of the year 2015)

live performance “the river runs black” performed for saturday supplement in the new art garden and within the exhibition The M+ Sigg Collection: Chinese art from the 1970s to now. Spanning forty years and bringing together works by artists such as Ai Weiwei, Cao Fei and Zhang Peili, this is an exhibition that charts the emergence of contemporary art in China, from early subversive works and events on Tiananmen Square in 1989 to the vibrant art scene of today.

07/2015 CFCCA (Centre for Chinese Contemporary Art) new commissioned works performance ‘the river runs black" + live sound recordings drawings and booklet.

in response to Micro Micro Revolution exhibition of taiwan art. exploring the power of art as a vehicle to address social change in Taiwan through three socially-engaged art projects: A Cultural Action at the Plum Tree Creek, Plant-Matter Needed and 500 Lemon Trees. These ongoing process-based, participative projects use art as a vehicle for addressing environmental issues, as a form of resistance, and as a platform for exchange.

05/2015 Todmorden Death festival West Yorkshire 

live performance “ A Requiem for the Darkness” and new trauma drawings and open studio group conversations 

around the themes of Death and Grief.

03/2015  Manchester Art Gallery

live performance “A dark mass” and engagement From suffragette smashing glass in the gallery to a breathtaking exhibition of female surrealists, Manchester has a rich heritage of stereotype-smashing women. Yet society, and the art world, is still dominated by men. ‘In Emergency Break Glass’ brings together the North’s best emerging female contemporary artists, performers & creatives to challenge the male-dominated artistic canon, respond to the gallery’s artworks and inspire attendees.

12/2014  Xrates The Hospital Club Covent Garden London

retrospective printed works in connection with sluice art projects 

11/2014 Festival Hyperlocal Buenos Aires

screening of new commisioned film works 

10/2014 Silent Barn “objects into sound” New York,  live performance

10/2014 Exchanges Rates Bushwick Brooklyn New York

2 week residency on a rooftop in Brooklyn New York. with live performance sound works, drawings and photography/film works + open studio

10/2014 Emergency Word Of Warning Z-Arts Manchester

commissioned performance sound work part of a day of live art festival. 

07/2014 Tor Festival Todmorden, live performance work

06/2014 Supersonic festival RACKET @Styrx artist project space Birmingham

talks/open studio and performance

02/2014 Noise above Noise #3 the penthouse manchester, live performance 

12/2013 Noise above Noise #2 the penthouse manchester, live performance

10/2013 Sluice art fair London

exhibiting new works text works,drawings, sculptural works + live performance 

10/2013 Deptford x arts festival London

site based works creating temporary memorial benches 

09/2013 equality everywhere islington mill manchester

sculptural works and performance 

09/2013 Noise above Noise #1 the penthouse manchester, live performance 

08/2013 Queer art show #4 the penthouse manchester

07/2013 Blankspace manchester equals exhibtions

new plaque works and live performance

04/2013 2022nq Manchester site responsive exhibition 

03/2013 The Penthouse nq open #1 exhibition  

09/2012 Holden gallery Manchester School of Art MA shows

MA show producing large scale installation “The Memory Garden”

A installation based around the idea of the memorial garden, but instead of the garden being a memorial to people who have past the memory garden is a memorial garden to moments, past memories. with this work i created a controlled environment a physical space to envoke memories and imagination, using semiotics and playing with peoples perceptions and senses, i created a space that was both relaxing and unnerve. this work was the starting point of on going work into memory fragments  and human frailty 

02/2012 3 Piccadilly place manchester expand exhibition

installation “white chair" 

11/2011 Chapel Gallery Lancashire

rise up and build exhibition fairhhurst-fielding photographic works

09/2011 Islington Mill Salford


08/2011-12  Kraak gallery Manchester queer show 

07/2011 4 Piccadilly place Manchester art crawl

05/2011 Creative hub Liverpool,  Liverpool look11 photographic festival

photographic large scale installation in a shipping container. The work dealt with the issue of domestic violence and being trapped in a space where the abuse is happening. I created an environment with sound and visuals that made the viewer feel unsafe and disorientated.

Other past Collaborative projects

09/2012 blankspace gallery manchester collaboration with the royal northern college of music

two new commissioned installation works responding to graphic scores by the musicians.

“taking inspiration from the structure of Emma-Ruth’s graphic score A True Celebration of Movement. When I first looked at the graphic score, I didn’t understand it –  it was an unfamiliar language to me. in response i created a new language with the use of braille and wire mesh, creating an installation that brings the score into a physical space, penetrating the walls of the gallery.”

06/2012 berlin lobe gallery with german artist Nastasia keller. film works

05/2012 Attributed sound A collaborative visual/sound art project  bringing together artists from Manchester, Liverpool, Cumbria, Swansea and California.

02/2012 sound piece ‘little battle’ on compilation by electronic music

09/2011 book The art school and Open eye photographic gallery Liverpool 

03/2011 performance rogue studio Manchester in collaboration with berlin artist Florian fusco hiss heads

03/2011 Victoria baths Manchester collaboration with QUDA art and Schmucks Theatre Group

Artist Residencies

Might and Main month long artist residency.“Might and Main is a project exploring the mechanisms and celebrating the outputs of the artist led- researching the importance of place and space to artistic production from Manchester city centre artist led studio and project space The Penthouse”.

Exchanges Rates Bushwick Brooklyn New York, 2 week residency on a rooftop in Brooklyn New York. with live performance sound works, drawings and photography/film works + open studio

The Trelex Residency Switzerland, month long residence producing new works with open studio days and community engagement.

Merz Barn the lake district, 2 week residency concluding with a open evening of live works and exile site based installation 

Fabric Bradford, 6 month city centre empty shop residency while working on my project “a packet of crisps and a bottle of coke” coffee mornings, workshops, open studio drop in, community live events and project exhibition. 

Talks / presentations

Media City Salford, Talk to inspire and give advice on working as a artist to art students of salford university 

Castlefield Gallery Manchester, Talk and presentation on my art practice and creating an artist project space for young artist development group.

Hepworth Gallery Wakefield, Pecha Kucha Night Wakefield, Volume #8: Leftovers

2022nq Manchester, The equals exhibition artist talk on contemporary feminism 

Zion centre Young artist development program for full circle arts and blank media

Doodlebug (in conversation) at the dulcimer chorlton Manchester (performance and talk)