The travelling art installation Mystery Bird has officially landed, bringing a magical story to the people of Salford and Manchester. 

The tour will take place over the coming days visiting families and residential homes across the city.

The travelling “show” has been created by a collection of artists from the north-west whose combined skills in model-making, projection, design, sound, augmented reality and even beatboxing have brought this spectacular piece to life.

The Mystery Bird is a giant 3metre x 2metre birdcage filled with projected birds and accompanied by a bespoke soundscape, which are released to “fly” across buildings, trees and the streets of Greater Manchester.

In addition to the Mystery Bird travelling installation, Quays Culture worked with artist Jack Hardiker to create a special Instagram filter so users can welcome the birds into their own homes and gardens via their mobile phones.

The idea has taken inspiration from the public’s heightened awareness of nature during the pandemic, offering solace, comfort, motivation and relaxation.

“So many people mentioned enjoying birds, listening to birdsong and getting involved with nature in general during the first lockdown,” said Programme Producer at Quays Culture and Co-Creator of Mystery Bird Jude Jagger.  “Despite Covid-19 being devastating, there are some aspects of this situation that have made us refocus on important factors in our lives. We want to play that back to people and deliver an ‘art at your front door’ wonder that will be truly special.”

(Co-Creator Gemma Saunders)

Check out the making of the Mystery Bird here.

Quays Culture are also asking for the public to share a movie of their own Mystery Bird experience that will be collated into a community movie to share the joy of the experience with the nation via the following steps:

  1. Open the filter via the Quays Culture Instagram and record the birds flying around you.
  2. Make bird sounds to release more birds!
    3. Save the video to your camera roll and email to
  3. Tag @quayscultureuk in your IG videos #mysterybird


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