Introducing CULTURE SHIFTS Touring Photography Network

Image© Darryl Georgiou 'Harold's Shark, Granby'. Culture Shifts led by Open Eye Gallery with Granby4Streets

Introducing CULTURE SHIFTS

A touring network for process-led photography work, engaging a range of artists, professionals and local communities in Liverpool City Region to raise creative ambition.

Culture Shifts is a new and exciting socially engaged photography programme, working with 10 national and international photographers embedded in communities across 7 areas of Liverpool City Region. It aims to support communities to explore their stories in a way that is meaningful to them.

“4 billion photographs per day are uploaded onto social media. Photography is now as important as text or verbal communication in the stories we tell about our own lives. Culture Shifts brings together people’s experience of the world and photographers’ expertise in taking and editing photo stories.”

– Sarah Fisher, Executive Director, Open Eye Gallery

Collaborating with photographers, communities will co-author a series of photo stories, reflecting on their identity, interests or lives. Collectively we hope these photo stories will inspire, surprise or challenge a wider audience through both a digital platform and 8 exhibitions across 7 venues.

The digital platform PhotoStories (currently being developed in partnership with Liverpool’s Red Ninja) will act as an online location for the photo stories created throughout Culture Shifts. In January 2017 the platform will be open for the wider public to share and respond to these new narratives, and also to upload their own photo stories.

As part of the overall Culture Shifts programme, Redeye, the Photography Network are working with local community champions and staff and volunteers associated with each residency to deliver training sessions on framing images, selecting and uploading photographs.

Liverpool based photographer Tadhg Devlin has been working in collaboration with the SURF Dementia network group, supported by Mersey Care NHS Foundation Trust. The SURF group act as support and advocacy network for those living with or affected by Dementia. This project will make it’s public debut as part of the new Tate Liverpool exchange programme in November 2016.

A number of young people’s groups from across Sefton, including an LGBT group and Youth Parliament group, are working with photographer Colin McPherson to explore the identity of young people in the area, reflecting on representation through online images. The Atkinson, Southport, will host the final selection of work in Spring 2017.

Birmingham based photographer Andrew Jackson, in collaboration with practitioner Darryl Georgiou are working with the people behind the public face of the “Granby Four Streets” community in the Toxteth area of Liverpool. Photo stories will be on display within one of the creative community centers in the area.

Communities in Northwood, Kirkby are coming together to work with photographer Tony Mallon to address what it means to live and be from the area. This is a welcome return home for Mallon, who grew up in the area. The results of this collaboration will be showcased at Kirkby Gallery in Autumn 2017.

St. Helens is home to the Pilkington Glass factory, which holds a key place in our industrial history. Photographer Stephen King and the local community connected to the factory will re-imagine and reanimate this site of industrial significance. The final photographic work will be displayed at the neighbouring World of Glass exhibition centre.

Working with photographers Gary Bratchford and Robert Parkinson, communities across Halton CCG (Clinical Commissioning Group) will explore barriers to health and wellbeing, and how photography can challenge pre-existing ideas and fears to exploring this topic. Results of the project will be showcased at The Brindley, Runcorn, in Summer 2017.

London based photographer Maria Kapajeva will challenge perceptions of who exactly the women of Wirral are, and bring women from different backgrounds, ages and domestic circumstances together to celebrate what it means to be a woman from this area. The Williamson Gallery, Birkenhead, will play host to the final exhibition of works in Spring 2017.

A selection of all work created across Liverpool City Region will culminate in a Culture Shifts exhibition at Open Eye Gallery, Liverpool, in September 2017, which will also celebrate the partnerships across the City Region and the power of photography to creatively engage us all.

This programme has been supported by the Strategic Touring Programme, Arts Council England in partnership with Open Eye Gallery, Liverpool CC, Mersey Care NHS Foundation Trust, The Atkinson, Sefton BC, Granby4Streets Community Land Trust, Kirkby Art Gallery, Knowlsey BC, Heart of Glass, St. Helens BC, Halton BC, Halton CCG, The Brindley, The Williamson, Wirral BC, Red Ninja, Redeye, the Photography Network and LOOK: Liverpool International Photography Festival.