The People’s History Museum is launching a new exhibition and events programme celebrating the art of wandering to mark the 10th anniversary of the Loiterers Resistance Movement (LRM), a Manchester based collective of artists and activists interested in psychogeography, public space and uncovering the secret stories of the city.
Since 2006 the LRM, a not for profit collective, has been organising free public walks, derives (drifts), games and spectacles in Manchester, eschewing the concept of simply getting from A to B and helping people embrace the beauty of loitering whilst giving them new ways in which to explore the streets.
The exhibition, with funding from the Arts Council England, will bring together artists, activists and loiterers from Manchester and beyond, all exploring the concept of ‘psychogeography’ in a celebration of what it means to ‘go for a walk’. Walking is often taken for granted as an everyday activity but it can also have extraordinary resonance and the exhibition will explore how, from protest marches to lone expeditions, walking can be a work of art or a political act.
There will be films, drawings, sound installations, paintings, DIY maps, photographs and even tools for the public to take away and begin creating their own exploration. The Loiterers Resistance movement will also share unique material from its own archives documenting its expeditions, including posters, found objects and hand crafted items used to guide walks such as CCTV Bingo Cards, game pieces made from metal salvaged from car manufacturing and maps transformed into fortune tellers.
Psychogeography is a somewhat mutable term that explores how we feel about our environment and the hidden forces that shape wherever we are. Guy Debord, founder member of the Situationist International, first coined the term, which has now evolved into a rich and diverse body of art and literature. Psychogeographers use walking in creative ways to explore, experience and map the city. For The LRM, this work has an explicit political agenda to uncover the power dynamics that shape our city and offer an alternative way to view them. Every step they take creates new connections and an emotional remapping that inspires different ways to look at Manchester.
In addition to the exhibition there will be psychogeographical activity popping up all in the People’s History Museum and across the city with a programme of events and, of course, walks, each of which shine a spotlight on a different area of history from how Manchester become the fist place to build a purpose built centre for the gay community to the impact drinking has had on shaping the city.
Catherine O’Donnell, Engagement & Events Officer at People’s History Museum Comments: “Our pavements are full of stories and this exhibition is a exploration of the ways in which we can use the act of walking to play, discover and even reclaim the streets in which we live. Come along and take part to open your eyes to the power of a stroll and uncover some of the hidden delights hidden within Manchester’s streets.”
This family friendly exhibition will be open daily (10am-5pm) in the People History Museum’s Community Gallery space. All events are free, but in order to keep the museum’s events programme affordable to everyone there is a suggested donation of £3.
Please note that all walks have different starting points across Manchester. Check meeting information on Eventbrite when booking.