The Art of Making Trouble – Tuesday 7 November 2017, 6pm

A memorial with the names and ages of 334 civilian drone casualties from Pakistan written on the surface of the constructed drone (written in English and Urdu).

Artist and activist, Prof Joseph DeLappe, likes making trouble. From hacking drones to selling despotic dictators on eBay, nothing is off limits, as he uses his over 30 years’ experience in online gaming and sculpture to create projects that react to modern politics and warfare. In his most well-known work, Joseph infiltrated the US Army recruitment game, “America’s Army’ and created memorials to US soldiers who had lost their lives in the most recent Iraq War.

Recently hired as the Professor of Games and Tactical Media at Abertay University, Joseph will discuss his past and future work, and provide a short history of political activism through computer games, art and design.

Everyone is welcome. This event is free and non-bookable. Places are limited so please arrive early to avoid disappointment. Doors open at 5pm.

Usain Bolt – Can Celebrity Boost Tourism? Tuesday 3 October 2017, 6pm

What makes a tourist destination attractive? Can (and should) famous people make a destination more desirable? This event explores the connections between celebrity and tourism through a discussion of Usain Bolt, the world’s most successful and recognisable athlete.

Dr Susan Mains, University of Dundee, will discuss her research on the promotion of Bolt as a global brand and ambassador for Jamaican tourism, and in doing so seeks to address the questions: can celebrity boost tourism, how do we “sell” place and what might this mean for tourism in Dundee?

Everyone is welcome. This event is free and non-bookable. Places are limited so please arrive early to avoid disappointment. Doors open at 5pm.

The More You Look, The More You See – Tuesday 19 September 2017, 6pm

A new exhibition explores the rich collections of objects and art from Dundee’s past, as part of the celebrations of The McManus: Dundee’s Art Gallery and Museum’s 150th Anniversary. Calum Colvin’s ‘Museography’ positions a number of his intriguing photographs within the galleries of The McManus for all to see.

But all is not what it seems. Look closely at the stunning images, and you’ll discover a magical and puzzling world, where familiar become fascinating and mysterious. In each photograph, the more you look, the more you see.

Join us for this talk from Prof Calum Colvin, from the University of Dundee, followed by a discussion. This talk will finish at 7pm. The event will be followed by a short guided tour of the exhibition for interested members of the audience.

Everyone is welcome. This event is free and non-bookable. Places are limited so please arrive early to avoid disappointment. Doors open at 5pm.

Summer 2017 break

Thank you everyone who came along to our Dundee Arts Cafe series 2016/2017. It’s been another great success, with topics ranging from art, culture, politics, gaming, and comics to name but a few.

Beach-Holiday-WallpaperIt’s time for Dundee Arts Cafe to take a well earned rest over the summer holidays, while we plan an exciting new series starting in September, at our usual venue of the McManus cafe.

Check out out Dundee Arts Cafe YouTube page to find our latest video clips of past talks.

Sign up for our mailing list to find out first about upcoming talks and events by emailing dundeeartscafe@dundee.ac.uk with ‘Subscribe’ in the subject box.

Women and Celebrity Culture – Tuesday 6 June 2017, 6pm


From the earliest days of the film industry, women have played key roles as both professionals and spectators. The division between the two has blurred today in the age of reality TV and social media – but the dynamic relationship between on- and off-screen worlds has always been in place.

Dr Ana Salzberg, from the University of Dundee, will explore the complex engagement between women and celebrity culture, discussing the evolution of stardom and fandom from early Hollywood to contemporary media.

Everyone is welcome. This event is free and non-bookable. Places are limited so please arrive early to avoid disappointment. Doors open at 5pm.

Meet the Dundee Degree Show Artists – Tuesday 2 May 2017, 6pm


Each year, Duncan of Jordanstone College of Art & Design’s Matthew and Crawford Buildings are transformed into Scotland’s largest exhibition space to showcase the work of over 350 of the University of Dundee’s graduating art, design and architecture students. For 10 days visitors will have an opportunity to view the culmination of several years of creative development and hard work in an exciting show spanning the areas of design and craft, contemporary art practice, social digital, graphic communication and architecture.

Join us on Tuesday 2 May 2017, 6pm at The McManus Galleries, for a sneak peek at what this year’s University of Dundee Art, Design & Architecture Degree show has to offer, when five students take to the floor to discuss their work, in advance of the show opening on 19 May 2017.

Everyone is welcome. This event is free and non-bookable. Places are limited so please arrive early to avoid disappointment. Doors open at 5pm.

Scottish Politics in Brexit Britain – Tuesday 14 March 2017, 6pm

The Brexit vote has sent shockwaves through British and European politics.

We know that the UK is almost certain to leave the European Union, but not how or what effect this change will have. We also know that this decision makes a second referendum on Scottish independence more likely. Yet, we don’t know much else.

In this talk, Paul Cairney examines what might happen next.

Everyone is welcome. This event is free and non-bookable. Places are limited so please arrive early to avoid disappointment. Doors open at 5pm.

Jamming in Dundee: The Art of Making Games – Tuesday 7 February 2017, 6pm

20193 Dundee Arts Cafe - Jamming in Dundee FEBRUARY SLIDEDundee is central to the story of the computer games revolution. In this fast-paced industry, designers and programmers have created decades of innovation and opportunity. And to keep up with a relentless pace of change, game makers need to be flexible, playful creators who thrive on discovery.

So what could be better than getting people in a room together, giving them 24 hours and asking them to come up with a game before the time runs out. These ‘Game Jams’ have gradually become an new approach to creative challenges and their success means they are used with hobbyists, educators and policy makers.

In this talk Ryan Locke (Abertay University) will discuss how Dundee, a city long regarded for game making, is making games accessible to all through playful thinking, bringing together communities of artists, makers and people who just want to play.

Minecraft: A Shift in Learning – Tuesday 6th December 2016

Minecraft is fast becoming one of the world’s most popular computer games, especially amongst children, allowing them to freely express, share and celebrate their inherent creativity.

Derek Robertson from the Poster image used University of Dundee will explore the wondrous simplicity and complexity of the game, and discuss the challenges of introducing games like Minecraft into the formal world of the classroom. Will the rich learning continue, or is there a danger that the Minecraft phenomena
will collapse?

Everyone is welcome. This event is free and non-bookable. Places are limited so please arrive early to avoid disappointment. Doors open at 5pm.

Creating Comics: A Celebration of H.G. Wells – Tuesday 1st November 2016

H.G. Wells is one of the most influential science fiction writers of all time. Among his many works are The Time Machine, The War of the Worlds, and The ImageInvisible Man, which brought futuristic, new ideas to life and showed us glimpses of today’s, and tomorrow’s, World.

Prof Chris Murray, University of Dundee, will explore the adaptations of H. G. Wells’ stories in comics, and will give an insight into the creative process behind comics. There will also be an opportunity to have a sneak peak of the new comic featuring adaptation of H.G.Wells’ stories being created at the University of Dundee. The talk and discussion will finish at 7pm. This event will be followed by a 30 minute special  session demonstrating how to create your very own comic strip (no drawing skills necessary).

This event is part of ‘H G Wells at 150: Hope and Fear’, a series of events that celebrate the great writer’s 150th birthday and is supported by the University of Dundee as the Scottish hub of the national Being Human festival (17th – 25th November).

Everyone is welcome. This event is free and non-bookable. Places are limited so please arrive early to avoid disappointment. Doors open at 5pm.