Thursday 25 September to February 2015
Flags From Another Place
An Exhibition by Aliyah Hussain


Aliyah Hussain’s Flags From Another Place focuses on an imagined visual identity for a fictitious world that may or may not be like Earth, using only the flags of each country as a form of expression of individuality for these potentially complex nations. Developed directly from her 2013 solo show ‘Land & Sky & Sea’ at La’Escocesa in Barcelona, the exhibition will utilise installation, prints, textiles and photography.

Set out in the style of an office in an Embassy or UN headquarters, the flags of the world will hang together; along with proposals for collaborative building projects between the different nations and displays of projected unity and harmony through compositional arrangements of abstract shapes and colours.

Aliyah Hussain’s practice encompasses performance, photography, painting, printmaking, collage, sound and costume. She experiments with the performative and technical aspects of different media to create works that reference futurist narratives, utopian visions and ritualistic practices embedded in the everyday.

A lot of Hussain’s work takes place outdoors relying on the forces within nature to complete it – using objects such as flags, kites and banners. By extracting the shapes and colours and using them in an abstract way she develops a form of visual communication that isn’t reliant on spoken language.


Thursday 28 August to February 2015
The Gravehounds Of Bone Street
An Exhibition by Skull Paradise

bone street A6 rgb

Skull Paradise are an illustration and design collective from Brighton, Leeds and London featuring five weirdos: James Burgess, Sophy Hollington, Idiot’s Pasture, Kate Prior and Pippa Toole. The exhibition at Common will be Skull Paradise’s third public outing and first collective show in the North after exhibiting “Bad Trip” at 2014’s Pick Me Up at Somerset House and Scawfell Street Studio, London. In this outing Skull Paradise invite you to hang out on the corner of Bone Street with The Gravehounds.

The Gravehounds are a leather wearing, motorbike riding, bad attitude, swearin’ gang of degenerate street dogs. They have shed their collar tags and leashes to live a life of hedonistic depravity. The corner of Bone Street is their spot, a corner lined with anti-feline, anti-human and anti-everything graffiti.

Join in the bad attitude and show canine solidarity on Thursday 28th August at 6pm. Expect temporary gang tattoos, Gravehound patches, limited edition risograph prints, free booze and bad vibes. Wear leather.
James Burgess
Sophy Hollington
Idiot’s Pasture
Kate Prior
Pippa Toole


Thursday 3rd April - September 2014
Sailing Through The Trees
An Exhibition by Caroline Dowsett and Alex T. Frazer

Sailing Through The Trees Poster

Light a cigarette from a candle and a sailor dies at sea” – An Icelandic saying.

A shudder ran down her spine and the flame flickered as she lit her cigarette from the candle that had kept her company all night at the bar. She was drinking alone, her husband away at sea. The news of her husband’s fortunes at sea reached her through a message in a bottle she found whilst staring out at the ocean longing for his safe return. It read:

“My love. What cruel fate has befallen me, swallowed alive by the deep blue sea. When I left you and set sail, how could I know my journey would end here, in the stomach of a whale. Be safe, be happy and live your life, love you always my beautiful wife x”

She was heartbroken as she stared at the cabin they shared together high up in the woods, too far from the cruel sea that would take him from her. When inspiration struck, the daughter of a carpenter, she found her father’s tools and began to take the cabin apart. Pulling the timbers from the walls and carrying them down to the river.

The walls became her hull, the sheets and curtains a patchwork sail, using all she could from the cabin she was finally done. She pushed away and sailed down the river, through the trees, until finally she reached the ocean. The boat bobbed as she desperately stood on the bow searching for a sign. Suddenly the handmade vessel shook and the whale she was searching for rose out of the water like an enormous island. Its mouth opened wide to engulf the boat, as hard as she tried the whale quickly swallowed her up, sailing past its jagged rock like teeth across the tongue and into the deep darkness.

Landing in the depths of the whale’s stomach, there she found her husband sat smoking his pipe, safe and sound but desperately missing his wife. They were happy to be reunited but saw no way of getting free from the inside the whale. So with her bag of tools, they took apart their boats and set about rebuilding their home.

Biography : 

Caroline Dowsett is an illustrator & maker based up North in Manchester, England. Her work is influenced by the simple pleasures in life; Nature, Food and People. Working mainly with ink & paint, and the smallest brushes she can get her hands on. Having studied Graphic Design at The Manchester School of Art, which fuelled her interest of text & image, now being mainly inspired by mid century children’s books & graphic novels.

Alex T. Frazer an illustrator with an old soul, preferring to keep a traditional element to his work, whether it is the subject matter or the methods used to create it. He uses inspiration from the past, the sea & the land, old tattoos and flash sheets, old advertising, photographs and signage, traditional hand-drawn illustration, country music and punk rock.