More than 50 artworks created by University of Salford students have been chosen to grace the walls of Hotel Football, the new hotel being developed by Manchester United legends Ryan Giggs and Gary Neville, thanks to a unique project.
As part of the University’s exclusive partnership with Manchester United’s ‘Class of ‘92’ (Ryan Giggs, Paul Scholes, Gary and Phil Neville and Nicky Butt), Art & Design students were given the chance to produce football-themed art for the hotel, which will open next door to Old Trafford stadium in early March 2015.
After Gary Neville visited the University to personally brief students on the project, over 100 artworks were submitted in a range of media – including paintings, graphic design prints, photography, sculpture, illustration, screen printing and digital design.
And at a judging session yesterday (Thursday 6 November) Gary, Hotel Football Managing Director Stuart Procter and General Manager Stewart Davies, along with Project ’92 Media Manager Di Law, selected over 50 pieces which will be hung in many of the hotel’s 133 bedrooms and its Old Trafford Supporters’ Club social space for fans, and will be available for guests to purchase.
Gary said: "Whilst art was not one of the original activities that we had thought about collaborating on with the University of Salford, we had been so impressed by the students that when it came to obtaining artwork for Hotel Football, we asked whether this may be something that would interest them.
“We were told that, due to timescales, the project would have to be ‘off curriculum’ and any interested individuals would have to do the work in their own time. With this in mind, we were amazed when we came to give the project briefing that over 250 students turned up, which was fantastic.
“The energy and excitement that they showed was great to see, particularly as this was something they would have to work on in and around their own studies. We’ve been really impressed with the quality of the final artworks and we’re looking forward to seeing the pieces we’ve selected up on the walls at Hotel Football and to working with the students to promote their work wherever we can.”
University Director of Art & Design, Roy Chilvers, added: “When Gary asked if we’d like to offer students the chance to use wall space to hang their work, and to sell it, in the rooms of Hotel Football we saw it as a great way to involve students from all year groups and across all our courses.
“Art & Design students often work with external clients as part of their studies, but the University’s partnership with the Class of ’92 gives them an incredible opportunity to work on very high profile projects like Hotel Football with people like Gary.
“The interest from our students was so great that we had to move Gary’s briefing session to a bigger room and much of the artwork which has been submitted is of an extremely high standard.
“Given that the national game divides opinion, and cities, we’re hope that the interesting and thought-provoking work which has been chosen for display at Hotel Football will keep guests entertained and inspired when they come to stay in Manchester.”
The partnership between the Class of ’92 and the University of Salford involves students and staff across the University working on areas including Salford City FC, Hotel Football and Old Trafford Supporters Club. Broadcast and journalism students already film all Salford City’s home matches, while sport science students take team training sessions and provide physio support on matchdays.
As the partnership develops, there will be a wide range of further opportunities for undergraduates and postgraduates from other courses to be involved in exciting internship, placement and research opportunities.
For further information on the partnership, visit http://www.salford.ac.uk/classof92.