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Counter-flow: the movement of cultures from one place to another

21 July 2021

New exhibition opens at People’s History Museum

Left to right Counter flow the movement of cultures from one place to another exhibition, Artist Eva Mileusnic, Counter flow (detail) & Borderlands part of Counter flow exhibition at People's History Museum

The spread of cultural identities is looked at in a new exhibition at People’s History Museum (PHM) by artist Eva Mileusnic.  Counter-flow: the movement of cultures from one place to another will be exhibited until Sunday 10 October 2021 as part of PHM’s migration programme.  Beginning with her own experiences, Eva takes visitors on a colourful and creative metaphorical journey that looks at the world and the demographic shifts that take place between cultures.

Central to the exhibition is Counter-flow itself; 100 pairs of ceramic feet each individually and beautifully decorated with intricate details that make different global reflections through patterns, traditions and textile references.  All tell a different story and are made from porcelain using vintage cobblers ‘lasts’ as their mould.  Lasts are also an old English word for ‘footprint’, which triggered Eva to think about the journeys taken by migrants.  The starting point for this bigger piece of work is also on display, Iren and Istvan’s Journey, in which Eva creatively expresses the lives of her parents who migrated from Hungary.

In Souvenir Dolls, the movement of cultural identities is reflected in the vintage costume dolls that were popular between the 1950s and 1970s as souvenirs when the advent of mass tourism began.  And in Inter-National Grid Eva has superimposed a patchwork grid of national costumes onto a vintage map of England and Wales to create a multicultural fabric of British society in modern day Britain.  Across the exhibition Eva works in many different materials, using techniques that she develops through her desire to achieve her end vision.

Eva is inviting visitors to explore and tell their own stories by participating in a series of Family Friendly workshop, with two sessions taking place every Wednesday of the school holidays starting from Wednesday 28 July.  Inspired by Eva’s Counter-flow art installation, families will have the opportunity to decorate a pair of plaster cast feet with a design that reflects their own identity or story.  Each session will be led by artist Pauline Wood and an array of materials will be available to use and experiment with including painting, printing, drawing and decal transfer application.  The activity is Family Friendly and designed to be suitable for all ages.  Tickets are priced at £6, £2 and free (plus booking fee for paid tickets) and can be booked here.

Visitors to People’s History Museum this summer will also be amongst the first to experience its recently launched cafe, Open Kitchen Cafe & Bar at PHM; a sustainable dining experience with a focus on delicious fresh, locally sourced food.  Choices feature a breakfast selection, sandwiches, hot dishes, drinks and a dedicated children’s menu.  There is also a dedicated picnic space in the museum’s Processional Way for those that want to bring their own lunch or snacks.

People’s History Museum’s opening hours are Wednesday to Sunday, from 10.00am to 4.00pm.

The museum and its exhibitions are free to visit with a suggested donation of £5.  To find out about visiting the museum, its full exhibitions and events programme based both at the museum and online visit, and you can keep up to date with the latest news by signing up to receive PHM’s e-newsletter, subscribing to the blog, or following the museum on social media on Twitter @PHMMcr, Facebook @PHMMcr, and Instagram @phmmcr.


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Notes to editors:

About People’s History Museum (PHM)
People’s History Museum (PHM) in Manchester is the national museum of democracy, telling the story of its development in Britain: past, present, and future.  The museum provides opportunities for all people to learn about, be inspired by and get involved in ideas worth fighting for; ideas such as equality, social justice, co-operation, and a fair world for all.  PHM offers a powerful programme with varied themes; 2018 looked at representation and commemorated 100 years since the first women and all men won the right to vote in Britain, in 2019 the focus was on protest to mark the bicentenary of the Peterloo Massacre in Manchester, the 2020-2021 programme is on the theme of migration and 2022 will explore disabled people’s rights and activism.  Previous winner of Kids in Museums Family Friendly Museum Award.

We are hugely grateful for the generosity of our funders who have supported People’s History Museum (PHM) during our period of closure and to reopen safely:

Arts Council England, Greater Manchester Combined Authority, Here for Culture, Manchester City Council and The National Lottery Heritage Fund.

About Arts Council England (ACE)
PHM is an Arts Council England (ACE) National Portfolio Organisation (NPO).  The work of PHM is supported using public funding by ACE, the national development body for arts and culture across England, working to enrich people’s lives.  ACE support a range of activities across the arts, museums and libraries – from theatre to visual art, reading to dance, music to literature, and crafts to collections.  Great art and culture inspires us, brings us together and teaches us about ourselves and the world around us.  In short, it makes life better.  Between 2018 and 2022, ACE will invest £1.45 billion of public money from government and an estimated £860 million from The National Lottery to help create these experiences for as many people as possible across the country.

About Eva Mileusnic
Eva is a second generation British/Hungarian born in Dewsbury, West Yorkshire UK.  In her work she invariably refers to the medium of memory and uses personal and found objects that reference and allude to the life of the exile and migrant, reflecting on the existing parameters between theories of identity and belonging.

In her current work, Eva uses cultural objects and images to reference current global demographic shifts and the spread of cultural identities.

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