Music, Photographs and Stories from the Archive


Music, Photographs and Stories from the Archives was an experimental, four-month project based on collaboration between the Institute of Popular Music (IPM), the Open Eye Gallery (OEG), a Liverpool-based photography gallery, and Liverpooljazz, an organisation working to raise the profile of jazz performance in Liverpool. One of the main aims of the project was to engage the public in the significant but under-utilised archives of the OEG and the IPM. Based in one of Liverpool’s most prestigious and prominent new developments, the OEG and its photographic archive is positioned at the heart of the city’s regenerated Waterfront. The project enabled members of the public to visit each archive and select materials, some photographic and some audio, that resonated with their lives and personal experience. Working with the project team they then put together a photo story and a music story based on these materials. These stories provided a basis for a modest, temporary display and related concert staged in July 2016 at the OEG where members of the public could engage with them. Throughout the duration of the project ‘stories from the archives’ were broadcast on BBC Radio Merseyside each week and the project also resulted in a short film produced by Áine Mangaoang and Derek Footte, and a Bay TV film documentary.

Led by Sara Cohen, the project was supported by competitive awards from the Arts and Humanities Research Council and the University of Liverpool. Other members of the IPM team were Mike Jones, Les Roberts and Áine Mangaoang.