TOWARDS MEMORIAL and MO(NU)MENTARIES at Bury Art Museum and Sculpture Centre

Maja Lorkowska, Exhibitions Editor
Yuen Fong Ling

TOWARDS MEMORIAL and MO(NU)MENTARIES at Bury Art Museum and Sculpture Centre, Manchester 16 October 2021 — 22 January 2022 Entrance is free — Visit now

What do political uncertainty, activism and sandals have in common? You can find out at Bury Art Museum‘s winter exhibitions: the latest iteration of MO(NU)MENTARIES and the brand new project TOWARDS MEMORIAL.

Despite being separate displays, the two are intertwined and led by Yuen Fong Ling – artist, researcher, and lecturer based in Sheffield. Ling’s oeuvre is characterised as socially engaged practice, and focuses on themes like intersectional identities, historical omission and non-permanent forms of public memorial. All of these elements can be seen at Bury Art Museum this season.

TOWARDS MEMORIAL began in Sheffield City Archives and centres on a pair of sandals worn by poet and activist Edward Carpenter. Born in the mid-19th century, Carpenter was an influential figure in cultural and social reform, living in an openly homosexual relationship, believing in vegetarianism, Eastern mysticism and sexual freedom. He designed and created a pair of sandals, the prototype of which Yuen Fong Ling came across in the City Archives. Initially producing postcards with imagery related to Carpenter, Ling and his boyfriend put them inside their shoes which they wore until the postcards took on the shape of their feet, and resembled the insoles of old, comfortable trainers. Feeling a personal connection to Carpenter, Ling was then inspired to revive the sandal design, and in doing so, to commemorate Carpenter while creating a new kind of memorial – one that can be worn, moved and used.

The archival material was re-interpreted and the sandals made using contemporary materials with the help of ethical, Sheffield-based shoemakers Noble & Wylie. Each pair of sandals is handmade and stamped on the inner sole with Self 1892, as well as 1844 and 1929 to commemorate Carpenter’s year of birth and death. The finished shoes were then gifted to The Friends of Edward Carpenter, a group of activist enthusiasts of the poet and now, for every 10 pairs of sandals made, a pair will be gifted to a deserving activist. As a result, Towards Memorial displays a three-part film, which documented the making, giving and wearing of the sandals.

MO(NU)MENTARIES is Bury Museum’s permanent collection display, with Ling’s new commission postcard pack re-framing the works in in the collection. The result is an exploration of selected artworks with a focus on the themes of feet, footwear, protest and public memorial.

TOWARDS MEMORIAL and MO(NU)MENTARIES at Bury Art Museum and Sculpture Centre, Manchester 16 October 2021 — 22 January 2022 Entrance is free Visit now

Where to go near TOWARDS MEMORIAL and MO(NU)MENTARIES at Bury Art Museum and Sculpture Centre

Bury
Gallery
Bury Art Shop

Bury Art Shop is a local gem filled with original artworks, crafts and homewares, championing the work of local artists and makers at the heart of Bury’s growing Culture Quarter.

bury market
Manchester
Event venue
Bury Market

Over the past thirty years, retail giants have developed in the vicinity, yet Bury Market remains the undisputed champion of the North, attracting thousands of visitors every week.

Manchester
Event venue
Burrs Country Park

Burrs Country Park lies on the River Irwell covering an area of 36 hectares of scenic countryside, one mile northwest of Bury town centre.

Manchester
Restaurant
Listo Burrito

Listo Burrito on Manchester’s Oxford Street tempts busy diners with fresh ingredients and a modestly priced menu.

Bar or Pub
The Eagle and Child

The Eagle and Child in Ramsbottom does what good pubs do best, and more.

Bury
Restaurant
Colleen’s Ramsbottom

Colleen’s is a casual dining neighbourhood restaurant in the heart of Ramsbottom serving seasonal dishes.

Restaurant
Levanter Fine Foods

Helmed by chef-owners Fiona and Joe Botham, this tapas restaurant in Ramsbottom serves exclusively Spanish drinks and some of the best small plates going.

What's on: Exhibitions

Culture Guides

Furiosa: A Mad Max Saga
Cinema in Manchester and the North

From the latest installment in the Mad Max franchise, to silent movie masterpieces we highlight the best new releases and big screen classics showing near you this month.