Exhibitions

Home: Ukrainian Photography, UK Words @ New Adelphi

4 March - 8 March 2024

Events

CREATIVE SOCIAL: IN THE ABSENCE OF FORMAL GROUND

2 March 2024

Exhibitions

We Feed The UK @ Exterior Walls

8 February - 31 March 2024

Events

Contrail Cirrus: the impact of aviation on climate change

7 March 2024

Exhibitions

Tree Story @ Liverpool ONE

16 February 2024

Open Source #27: Saffron Lily – In The Absence of Formal Ground @ Digital Window Gallery

6 February - 6 March 2024

Events

Contemporary Photography from Ukraine: Symposium @University of Salford

4 March - 5 March 2024

Events

Is Anybody Listening? Symposium: Commissioning and Collecting Socially Engaged Photography

29 February 2024

Past Events

Different approaches: Artists working with scientists

15 February 2024

Events

LOOK Climate Lab 2024: All Events

18 January 2024

Exhibitions

Diesel & Dust @ Digital Window Gallery

18 January - 31 March 2024

Events

Tree Walks Of Sefton Park with Andrea Ku

21 January 2024

Past Events

Artists Remake the World by Vid Simoniti: Book Launch

31 January 2024

Past Events

Shift Liverpool Open Meeting

6 February 2024

Past Events

We Feed The UK Launch and LOOK Climate Lab 2024 Celebration

8 February 2024

Past Events

Cyanotype workshop with Melanie King

17 February 2024

Past Events

End of Empire: artist talk and discussion

22 February 2024

Past Events

Book Launch: What The Mine Gives, The Mine Takes

24 February 2024

Events

Local ecology in the post-industrial era: open discussion

14 March 2024

Events

Plant a seed. Seed sow and in conversation with Plot2Plate

16 March 2024

Events

Waterlands: creative writing workshop

23 March 2024

Events

Erosion: panel discussion

9 March 2024

Events

Waterlands: an evening of poetry and photographs

23 March 2024

Events

Force For Nature Exhibition

27 March - 28 March 2024

Voices of Nature: Interactive Performances

28 March 2024

Past Events

Sum of All Parts: Symposium

27 February 2024

Exhibitions Main Exhibition

LOOK Climate Lab 2024

18 January - 31 March 2024

Past Events

MA Socially engaged photography Open Day event

1 February 2023

Past Events

Tish: Special screening and Q&A

13 December 2023

Past Events

Book Launch: A Look At A New Perspective

23 November 2023

Events

Community workshops @ Ellesmere Port Library

6 November - 5 February 2024

Past Events

Book Launch: ‘544m’ By Kevin Crooks

30 November 2023

Past Exhibitions

Bernice Mulenga @ Open Eye Gallery Atrium Space

17 November - 17 December 2023

Past Events

Bernice Mulenga: Artist Talk

18 November 2023

Past Exhibitions

Local Roots @ The Atkinson

14 October 2023

Exhibitions

Community @ Ellesmere Port Library

26 October - 11 April 2024

Past Events

Critique Surgery for Socially Engaged Photographers

6 November 2023

Past Events

Deeds Not Words: panel discussion

12 October 2023

Past Exhibitions

Deeds Not Words @ Atrium Space

3 October - 22 October 2023

Ode To Our Space @ Digital Window Gallery

29 September - 23 December 2023

A Look At A New Perspective @ Digital Window Gallery

29 September - 23 December 2023

Past Events

Book Launch: Crow Dark Dawn

19 October 2023

Past Events

Exhibition Launch: A Place of Our Own

28 September 2023

Reflections

12 September - 22 December 2023

Past Events

Sandra Suubi ‘Samba Gown’ Procession

9 September 2023

Exhibitions Future Exhibitions

A Place of Our Own

29 September - 22 December 2023

Past Events

POETRY BOOK LAUNCH: JACK BENNETT – LUNETTE

7 September 2023

Exhibitions

A Portrait of the High Street @ Prescot

31 August 2023

Projects Past Exhibitions

Our Home. Our Place. Our Space. @ Walton

16 August - 2 October 2023

Past Events

Poetry Reading: Coast to Coast to Coast’s sixth Birthday!

16 September 2023

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Tish: Special screening and Q&A

13 December / 18.00 / Picturehouse at FACT

Picturehouse at FACT and Open Eye Gallery present a special screening of Paul Sng’s documentary Tish, followed by a panel discussion with Jen Corcoran (producer of Tish) and socially engaged photographer Emma Case, moderated by Open Eye Gallery.

Book your tickets

Tish Murtha was a visionary photographer committed to documenting the struggle and inequality of the working-class communities that framed her upbringing. Her archive of work from Northeast England and London’s Soho in the 1970s and 1980s is lovingly realised in this exploration of the legacy of her work and private life by her daughter, Ella Murtha. 

As a working class photographer from the North East, Tish felt an obligation to the people and problems within her local environment, and used documentary photography to highlight and challenge the social disadvantages she herself suffered. Unlike many social documentary photographers, Tish was from the same streets as the people she photographed, lending a poignant intimacy to her stark yet tender black and white images. However, despite early acclaim for her work, she was unable to make a living from photography and was unable to escape the poverty she documented. She died aged 56, her work relatively unknown.

Tish’s brilliant eye, her unswerving ethics and constant empathy are present in her images, yet little is known of the artist herself. In this feature documentary we follow Tish’s daughter, Ella, as she opens up her mother’s archive for the first time on screen to reveal a treasure trove of unseen images, artefacts, letters and diaries. Ella takes to the road to meet people who knew Tish and ask why she did not receive more recognition in her lifetime.

In digging into the past, Ella comes to terms with her own grief at her mother’s passing and reconnects with family members not seen in years. By shining a light on a working class artist who went largely unrecognised in her lifetime, the documentary questions the value placed on working class people both in the past and present day.

Director’s bio

Paul Sng is a bi-racial British Chinese filmmaker based in Edinburgh, Scotland whose work focuses on people who challenge the status quo. His films have been broadcast on television and screened internationally, and his feature documentary credits include DISPOSSESSION, POLY STYRENE: I AM A CLICHE (winner of BIFA 2021 Best Documentary, BIFA 2021 Raindance Discovery Award) and TISH (Sheffield DocFest 2023 Opening Gala film). He is a 2022/23 BAFTA Breakthrough Artist.

 

Press

“Tish Murtha, who lived a life as tough as those she shot in different eras of deprivation and marginalisation, receives a wholehearted and riveting tribute” The Guardian, Peter Bradshaw

“Details leap out from the photographs, not just the faces of those she captured, but the twist of cigarette smoke, metal ashtrays recalling the tang of wet ash, plasters on scrubbed knees” Eye for Film

“An authentic insight into the devastating impact of unemployment and poverty” Screen International

“Paul Sng’s intimate documentary resurrects a fleeting art radical, honouring her incisive political views as well as her photographs”  Sight and Sound

 

Image: Kenilworth Road Kids, Cruddas Park, Juvenile Jazz Bands (1979) – Tish Murtha (c) Ella Murtha, all rights reserved.

 

13 December / 18.00 / Picturehouse at FACT

Picturehouse at FACT and Open Eye Gallery present a special screening of Paul Sng’s documentary Tish, followed by a panel discussion with Jen Corcoran (producer of Tish) and socially engaged photographer Emma Case, moderated by Open Eye Gallery.

Book your tickets

Tish Murtha was a visionary photographer committed to documenting the struggle and inequality of the working-class communities that framed her upbringing. Her archive of work from Northeast England and London’s Soho in the 1970s and 1980s is lovingly realised in this exploration of the legacy of her work and private life by her daughter, Ella Murtha. 

As a working class photographer from the North East, Tish felt an obligation to the people and problems within her local environment, and used documentary photography to highlight and challenge the social disadvantages she herself suffered. Unlike many social documentary photographers, Tish was from the same streets as the people she photographed, lending a poignant intimacy to her stark yet tender black and white images. However, despite early acclaim for her work, she was unable to make a living from photography and was unable to escape the poverty she documented. She died aged 56, her work relatively unknown.

Tish’s brilliant eye, her unswerving ethics and constant empathy are present in her images, yet little is known of the artist herself. In this feature documentary we follow Tish’s daughter, Ella, as she opens up her mother’s archive for the first time on screen to reveal a treasure trove of unseen images, artefacts, letters and diaries. Ella takes to the road to meet people who knew Tish and ask why she did not receive more recognition in her lifetime.

In digging into the past, Ella comes to terms with her own grief at her mother’s passing and reconnects with family members not seen in years. By shining a light on a working class artist who went largely unrecognised in her lifetime, the documentary questions the value placed on working class people both in the past and present day.

Director’s bio

Paul Sng is a bi-racial British Chinese filmmaker based in Edinburgh, Scotland whose work focuses on people who challenge the status quo. His films have been broadcast on television and screened internationally, and his feature documentary credits include DISPOSSESSION, POLY STYRENE: I AM A CLICHE (winner of BIFA 2021 Best Documentary, BIFA 2021 Raindance Discovery Award) and TISH (Sheffield DocFest 2023 Opening Gala film). He is a 2022/23 BAFTA Breakthrough Artist.

 

Press

“Tish Murtha, who lived a life as tough as those she shot in different eras of deprivation and marginalisation, receives a wholehearted and riveting tribute” The Guardian, Peter Bradshaw

“Details leap out from the photographs, not just the faces of those she captured, but the twist of cigarette smoke, metal ashtrays recalling the tang of wet ash, plasters on scrubbed knees” Eye for Film

“An authentic insight into the devastating impact of unemployment and poverty” Screen International

“Paul Sng’s intimate documentary resurrects a fleeting art radical, honouring her incisive political views as well as her photographs”  Sight and Sound

 

Image: Kenilworth Road Kids, Cruddas Park, Juvenile Jazz Bands (1979) – Tish Murtha (c) Ella Murtha, all rights reserved.

 

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