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From Brooklyn Works to Brooklynism?

A programme of exhibitions and free events set in the heart of Kelham Island. Join us to explore the ways in which heritage, culture and creativity create change in the city. Art, poetry, food, music, history, community

Keep updated via Twitter:                                                                                   

@KelhamIsland @CoConHum @AHKExchange #Brooklynism

Book tickets here:

Programme curated by the University of Sheffield, Faculty of Arts and Humanities in partnership with Kelham Island Museum

From Brooklyn Works to Brooklynism? asks: ‘What have artists and artisans got to do with making a great neighbourhood? How can creatives form new urban identities? What role for heritage, culture and creativity in the city place-making story? Kelham Island, Sheffield’s Brooklyn?’

In Sheffield myth, Brooklyn Works is the place where the steel for the Brooklyn Bridge was manufactured. It was one of the first industrial buildings in Kelham Island to be redeveloped in an area that has been crowned the best neighbourhood in the UK (2019 Urbanism Awards). In the 2000s, the New York Borough of Brooklyn witnessed a renaissance as an avant garde destination for artists, hipsters, makers and gentrifiers. But is ‘Brooklynism’, as one commentator (Alec Hall) suggests, ‘corporate interests masquerading as a so-called artisanal movement; the development of a fake culture of individual empowerment with concern for ecology and social development wrapped up in consumer choice’?


Kelham Island Life by Laura Page and Komarine Romdenh-Romluc (Steam Hammer Café)                                                                                                            

Along These Lines by Louise Finney (River Don Engine Room)

A collection of works by Nick Grindrod and Sean Williams (Exhibition Pod)       

P.S. A postscript before concluding (2019) by Jon Orlek and Goran Vodička (Exhibition Pod)

Private View: 26th June, 6pm – 8pm (free event).                     

Exhibition runs 27th June to 24th July. Note: there is an entry charge to Kelham Island Museum. Entry to the Steam Hammer Café is free.

EVENTS (All events are free but please book as places are limited)

After the Strike. On the 35th anniversary of the Battle of Orgreave, the first ever public reading of Barry Hine’s lost TV script set during the days of the Miners’ Strike. SOLD OUT. Tuesday 18th June, 7pm

Picturing Kelham Island. An evening that explores the diverse faces of Kelham Island communities with Laura Page and Komarine Romdenh-Romluc (University of Sheffield, Department of Philosophy) sharing their Kelham Island Life photography project; Miguel Kanai and Frazer Burbery (University of Sheffield, Department of Geography) and Mark Hutchinson (Journey to Justice). Free refreshments, pay bar. Wednesday 26th June, 7 – 9pm. Millowners Arms, Kelham Island Museum

Guided Walk with Anders Hanson and Pete Green. Starting at Kelham Island Museum, we’ll explore the places and stories of Kelham Island’s regeneration, its industrial and natural history. Poet Pete Green will be reading The River Don Shipping Forecast and other poems. Difficulty of walk: easy / moderate (pavements and surfaced footpaths). Free refreshments provided at the end of the walk. Wednesday 3rd July, 7 – 9pm. Millowners Arms, Kelham Island Museum.

The Comforts and Discomforts of Place and Dwelling. A day of talks and activities run by the Sheffield Hallam University Space & Place Group. This free, day-long SHU SPG event will bring together academics from across SHU and beyond, to explore different ways of researching spaces and places, specifically from the perspective of comfort and discomfort. Booking via Eventbrite: Wednesday 10th July, 9am – 5pm. Power Lab, Kelham Island Museum.

From Brooklyn Works to Brooklynism: The Symposium. A day of provocations, debate and discussion. We will explore, challenge, contextualise and offer perspective on the Kelham Island experience and ‘Brooklynism’ in general. Keynotes by Professor Vanessa Toulmin (University of Sheffield) and Amanda Wasielewski, American artist and researcher, author of Made in Brooklyn: Artists, Hipsters, Makers, Gentrifiers. Panel discussions: Art, artists and regeneration; Ingredients of the place – what we’re given, what we bring; Culture, regeneration, destination; Making Place. Thursday 11th July, 10am – 5pm. Power Lab, Kelham Island Museum.

From Brooklyn Works to Brooklynism: The Social. Meet our keynote speaker, Amanda Wasielewski, for an informal presentation of her research, Q&A and networking. Event hosted by The Loft Bar, a partnership between creative agency TEST Creative and Kelham Island Brewery. Free event, pay bar. Thursday 11th July, 5.30 – 7pm. The Loft Bar, Alma Street.

An evening of Sonic Art and Poetry.                                                                              

Steal: Away: Home. A performance. In early May 2019, composers Adam Stanović and Adrian Moore from The University of Sheffield, Department of Music worked with students recording sounds in and around Kelham Island Museum, using these to create musical works that resonate with the space and place of Kelham Island.

Kelham Island Poetry by Helen Angell. Fascinated by the place where poetry and architecture meet, Helen Angell’s poems unearth the beauty and history of industrial settings around Kelham Island. They will uncover the people who lived and worked in the area as well as the landscape and processes that formed them.                                

Free refreshment plus a pay bar. Wednesday 17th July, 7 – 9pm. Millowners Arms, Kelham Island Museum.

Open Deck with artist Ashley Holmes. The Open Deck invites you to bring music of your choice (vinyl records or mp3 files) and contribute to a space of collective listening and sharing of stories, memories and perspectives. Open Deck is a contribution-based project documenting our relationship to music, sound recordings and aural histories For more info, please email                                                        

Free refreshments plus pay bar. Wednesday 24th July, 7 – 9pm. Millowners Arms, Kelham Island Museum.

Booking information

Please book your tickets to all events via Eventbrite.                                                                

All events are at Kelham Island Museum unless stated otherwise. All events are free to attend, with the exception of After the Strike.                          

Scan the QR code below or go to


For ticket and event enquiries:

For accessibility and museum opening time enquiries:

Keep updated via Twitter:                                                                                            



Visiting Kelham Island Museum


Adults £7.50 with gift aid
Adults £6.82 without gift aid
Concessions £6.05 with gift aid
Concessions £5.50 without gift aid
Accompanied Children (U16) FREE
Free admission for accompanying carers.


Free visitor parking is located on the main museum site (50 spaces) and our overflow car park located adjacent to Kelham Island Brewery and the Fat Cat pub on Alma Street.
Sheffield City Council Car Parks or Sheffield Car Parks


To travel by bus visit or for a journey planner

Bus links to Kelham Island are:
15, 53, 37 – Closest bus stop – Mowbray Street
81/82, 79/79a, 84, 85/85a, 17A, 35, 36, 37, 57 SL, 38 – Gibraltar Street
53 (Ecclesfield) – Nearest Bus stops are on Mowbray Street
11/12, 14, 17, 57/57A, 58, 66, 77, 78 Nearest Bus stops are on Gibraltar Street.


The nearest station is Sheffield. We are a 25 minute walk to Kelham Island or a short tram ride.
To travel by train visit National Rail Enquiries, Northern Rail or Trainline


We are just a short walk from Shalesmoor Tramstop (see video) or a ten minute walk from Cathedral visit  for timetables and prices

Walking Directions from Shalesmoor Tramstop:
Crossover Penistone Road dual carriageway and turn right.  Turn left and walk down Cornish Street. Turn right at the bottom onto Green Lane and walk for around 5 minutes, passing The Milestone Pub on your left and The Grind Cafe on your right.  Turn right just after The Fat Cat pub onto Kelham Island. Follow the road round to the left passing The Chimney House and you will arrive at Kelham Island Museum.

Further information about Kelham Island Museum can be found on their website: