The 2023 Manchester Marathon has collaborated with Manchester-based artist, Pete Obsolete, to create a bespoke ﬁnisher t-shirt design that ‘celebrates the city and the beautiful people of Manchester’.
The collaboration comes as part of a wider art-centric initiative by the marathon organisers to work with local artists to champion the people and culture of the city in a creative way.
Pete, a prominent UK artist who is highly regarded for his illustrative works, frequently features the theme of humanity within his work and said he wanted to highlight what he describes as the “pure human endeavour” of running a marathon within his design.
He said: “I’m a very human-focussed artist, and base everything, including my alter-ego name of Pete Obsolete, on the idea of ‘hand-made’ and seeing the human touch in any and all work I produce.
I feel like the marathon is similar; it’s pure human endeavour, and the marathon has always felt like a celebration of being human. I know a wide variety of abilities, ages and backgrounds take part, and most are running to support another person or project.”
Speaking on the inspiration behind the design, Pete said: “The city, and the beautiful people of Manchester inspired me. All the elements in the drawing are what I associate with Manchester; Historic and industrial, musical, expressive, colourful, cultural, supportive, and full of an amazing can-do attitude to life.”
The design features core elements of the city including the heart as a symbol of love and hope, the arches and waterways to represent the industrial routes of the city and the skyline to express Manchester’s future and ideas.
It also includes a microphone to celebrate the cities’ creatives, the bee as the eternal symbol of the hive that is Manchester, a football speaks to a city divided and united by its love for the game, a sunrise for a new dawn rising over a city ﬁlled with light, and ﬁnally a handshake, which represents the human touch and symbol of collaboration.
Pete describes himself as an honorary-Mancunion, having moved to the city from Nottingham. He said: “Manchester is my second home, and being chosen to represent it is humbling. To know that my design will be on the chest of everyone who’s dedicated their time and eﬀorts to train and complete the Marathon, whatever their ability, is a small honour and reﬂects that idea that you can do anything if you put your mind to it.
“There’s a magic here, and it’s an industrial, experimental magic that seems to radiate from the architecture, the cultures and the insane diversity of its citizens.”
Pete’s ﬁnisher t-shirt design, which reﬂects the ‘magic of the city’, will now be shared with each runner that crosses the ﬁnish line on April 16th.
With limited ﬁnal places remaining, time for signing up is running out, additionally the deadline for runners to personalise their bib with their name is Monday 20th February. More information on entry types can be found on the oﬃcial website www.manchestermarathon.co.uk/home/
Many runners take part to raise money for charity. In 2022, runners collectively raised £1.9 million in vital funds for charity including the event’s oﬃcial charity partners, the Alzheimer’s Society, Cancer Research UK, the British Heart Foundation and Sense. There are still a number of oﬃcial charity partner places available to the public at a discounted price – more information can be found on the oﬃcial event website
NB. For the avoidance of doubt, these are not adidas t-shirts, but are great quality, and will sport the Manchester Marathon logo (and the fact you have completed the 2023 event) as part of the design.