Posts tagged: Lizzie King

New writing on Mishka Henner’s electrifying performance ‘The Conductor’

Two new pieces of writing in response to the debut of The Conductor, a brand new performance artwork developed by Mishka Henner as part of his Energy House 2.0 artist residency. You can now read reviews from Lizzie King and Jack Nicholls for Corridor8.

The Conductor captivated audiences at Sounds From the Other City 2024 by translating live lightning data into electrifying percussion. Set in a reverberation chamber at the University of Salford Acoustics Department, The Conductor is the result of an 18-month artist residency by Henner at the University of Salford’s Energy House 2.0, a cutting-edge research facility that simulates extreme global climatic conditions under one roof to help design net zero and carbon neutral housing for the future.

Dive into the immersive experience by reading the reviews from Lizzie King and Jack Nicholls here:

The Energy House 2.0 Artist Residency Programme is organised by the University of Salford Art Collection in partnership with Open Eye Gallery, Liverpool as part of the LOOK Photo Biennial, and Castlefield Gallery, Manchester, and generously supported by Friends of Energy House Labs.

A Sensory Journey Through Sound and Silence: The Conductor by Mishka Henner – Review by Lizzie King

Quiet … giggles…. disorientation… quiet.… Bang. Bang…. boom

Mishka Henner’s The Conductor was a real experience. From sensory overload to sensory deprivation, Henner played with the way we experience thunder and lightning, sound and visuals.  This is not Henner’s first exploration of visual and sound art but is perhaps his most immersive. The performance began with a guided procession by the theatrical ‘Protector’ who declares, ‘Follow me to all the world’s thunder.’

The Protector, dressed in a dark cloak and carying a long staff leads the audience across the University of Salford Campus.
The Protector leading the audience at Sounds From the Other City, 2024. Photography by Breige Cobane.

Every lightning strike in the world is compiled in a click track that is, unbeknown to the audience, playing in the ear of a drummer (Jennifer Walinetski). Led into a pitch-black room the audience experiences a loss of vision which is soon replaced by flashing blue lights illuminating the silhouette of Walinetski who begins to play a set of percussion instruments in response to the undisclosed click track. The sound is overwhelming, all-encompassing, visceral. It fills the space in that all-consuming way that vibrates you to your inner core. It was invasive yet captivating and I could have stayed in there longer. 

A photograph showing dark sillouttes, backlit in blue, as the figures watch The Conductor by Mishka Henner, in the reverberation chamber at the University of Salford.
Mishka Henner, Performance, 2024. Photography by Sam Parker.

We were brought out of that dark room and taken into another. The anechoic chamber is a world-class acoustic research facility at The University of Salford and according to Danny Wong-McSweeny, the facility manager, the second quietest room in the world.  We went into the dark with a click track playing very quietly, the same track that had played in Walinetkski’s ear. Wong-McSweeny turned on a light and gives our group an explanation of the room. Unlike the first room where the large bangs reverberated around and through us, the anechoic chamber is full of foam cubes all over the walls and floors so no sound can reflect. The tiniest whisper from Wong-McSweeny is audible, he demonstrated how as he turned around we could hear his voice less as it had nowhere to bounce off. He turned the light off and again we were in pitch black. The floor is covered in netting, with the bounce of a trampoline and someone in the group asked that no one jump as we stood there in the darkness with the least amount of noise we have ever heard. It was pure silence. It’s pure deprivation of stimuli, bar the slight instability felt standing on the netting. There is no information to take in, but purely experience the lack of.  After hearing such loud sounds the lack really hits you. Again I could have stayed in there longer and hearing Danny’s explanations was fascinating.

A stylised image of procussionist Jennifer Walinetski, in the angular Conductor costume, in a dramatic pose, holding a drum stick in each hand. Behind her are the dramatic and angular foam walls of the Anecoic Chamber at the University of Salford.
Mishka Henner, The Conductor, 2024. © Liz Lock and Mishka Henner

Henner is currently artist in residence at Energy House 2.0. Energy House 2.0 collects data looking for ways to create more energy-efficient homes which can work with and withstand weather. Henner here seems to be playing with the data of weather to examine our relationship and experience with it. Weather is after all for us a sensory experience, we feel it, hear it, see it; we are amongst it. In this way The Conductor hit these points, we were amongst it. I think this piece can ask us to think bigger about how on a global scale with the climate emergency, as that ever-present white noise constantly surrounding us, we relate with weather? Is there that awe and respect there when we consider global weather events like the kind of captivation that happens when experiencing sound in this way? Is it something further away and distant, unlike the local rain on our face? The Conductor brings the far into focus and makes it palpable. It held the audience in awe and respect of the power of sound, and it left us talking and posing questions like all good art should.

Lizzie King, 2024

The Conductor was presented on the 5th of May as part of Sounds From The Other City. The Conductor was conceived and directed by Mishka Henner as part of the Energy House 2.0 Artist’s Residency. Organised by the University of Salford Art Collection in partnership with Open Eye Gallery, Liverpool as part of the LOOK Photo Biennial, and Castlefield Gallery, Manchester, and generously supported by Friends of Energy House Labs.

The Conductor

Lizzie King is an artist based in Salford who works with photographic methods and sound, currently environmental artist in residence for Open Eye Hub and undertaking an MA in Contemporary Fine Art at the University.

Lizzie King

LOOK Climate Lab 2024 – Private View and Launch

RSVP – Thursday 8th of February 2024, 6-8 PM



LOOK Climate Lab is a biennial programme exploring how photography can be a relevant and powerful medium for talking about climate change. The Open Eye Gallery has been transformed into a lab: bringing together researchers and artists to collaborate, test their ideas, and encourage audiences to discuss systematic changes needed for dealing with the climate crisis.

Open Eye Gallery - LOOK Climate Lab 2024
Photo cred : Rob Battersby
Open Eye Gallery - LOOK Climate Lab 2024
Photo cred : Rob Battersby

The exhibition is open now! However there is a private view and launch alongside the We Feed The UK project on the 8th of February, 6-8 pm. Come along if you can!

Featuring Stephanie Wynne, Nazar Furyk, our artist in residence at Energy House 2 Mishka Henner, John Davies, Mario Popham, Johannes Pretorius, Hellen Songa, one of our previous Graduate Scholars Lizzie King, and Gwen Riley Jones!

RSVP and find out more through the Open Eye Gallery website – link below!

LOOK Climate Lab is partnered with Gaia Foundation, Energy House 2.0 Salford, Royal Horticultural Society, The Tree Council, Impressions Gallery, Peloton Liverpool Coop, Wigan Council, The Mersey Forest, Liverpool ONE and many others to bring people and ideas together, explore the complexities of human-nature relationships and make positive changes to live more sustainable and connected lives.

Photo credit : Rob Battersby Photography

Another year of Green Impact success for the Art Collection

Following on from 2021-22 where the Art Collection took home a platinum Green Impact award after participating for the first time in the University-wide Green Impact Scheme, this year for 2022-23 we are delighted to share that we have once again achieved a platinum Green Impact award for our ongoing sustainability efforts. 

Green Impact is a United Nations award-winning sustainability engagement programme, run internationally by SOS-UK. Throughout the year, organisations across the globe work on sustainable actions in the Green Impact toolkit, each worth either 5, 10 or 15 points. 

By completing actions worth over 500 points throughout the year, the Art Collection team has achieved a second Platinum award. Actions undertaken this year have included completing an energy audit with Marta Strzelecka, University Sustainability Engagement Officer and continuing to reduce single-use plastic and make sustainable swaps where possible across our work; swapping out bubblewrap for re-usable silver stiffy bags as recommended by the Gallery Climate Coalition, and continuing to use ecoboard over foamex and vinyl in our exhibition signage and materials. 

Team Assistant Sam Parker holding the Green Impact award in front of two University sustaininability banners.
Team Assistant Sam Parker at the 2023 Green Impact Awards. Courtesy the Enviromental Sustainability Team.
Resuable Silver Bags being used to store artwork rather than single use plastic.

In addition to day-to-day actions, our Green Impact submission this year also included our wider thematic work around sustainability, including the ongoing Energy House artist residencies and the Hybrid Futures programme. 

For our Hybrid Futures work, particularly around the Collective Futures collaborative engagement programme, we were awarded the special Community Action Award. Collective Futures brings together individuals, invited by the Hybrid Futures‘ partners for their perspective on the climate crisis. Connecting around Hybrid Futures’ ongoing activity, the collective is collaborating to explore new ideas, possible solutions, and examples of creative work that has made an impact in local and global communities. With each member able to both bring their interests, experiences, and insights and share the group’s work back out to their communities, the collective is already proving a fruitful site of collaboration and sharing. 

Additionally, Lizzie King was awarded the Student Leadership Award for her work on Sustaining Photography. MA Contemporary Fine Art student Lizzie has co-developed Sustaining Photography with socially-engaged photographer Gwen Riley Jones as an exhibition and programme of engagement for fellow students and the public, showcasing and promoting plant-based alternatives to traditional toxic photographic methods. If you would like to find out more about Lizzie’s work on Sustaining Photography, click here

Lizzie King holds her Green Impact award, stood in front of two sustainability banners.
Lizzie King accepting her Student Leadership Award. Courtsey the Enviromental Sustainability Team.
A photograph of Lizzie King in the University of Salford Community Growing Space.
Lizzie King, Sustaining Photography. Courtesy Lizzie King.

Art Collection Team Sustainability Champion, Rowan Pritchard shares: “Once again we are so pleased to be recognised for our ongoing sustainability work. From day-to-day activity to our overarching thematic focuses, working sustainability has come to underpin everything we try to do at the University of Salford Art Collection. It has been great to take part once again in Green Impact, and to see and celebrate all of the brilliant sustainability work happening across campus.” 

Find out about all of the teams who participated in Green Impact across the University PLUS read more about the Green Impact programme on the University’s sustainability blog, here

New Blogs from Sustaining Photography 🌿

Throughout November, artist Lizzie King and Socially Engaged Photographer Gwen Riley Jones have been sharing recipes and reflections from their project Sustaining Photography.

Sustaining Photography is a project led by Lizzie and Gwen, exploring and promoting plant-based and sustainable alternatives to traditional photographic processes. 

You can read all four blogs, including recipes for anthotypes and 35mm film developer from Gwen and Lizzie and find out more about the project here: Sustaining Photography

Sustaining Photography has been funded by the Salford Advantage Fund and The University of Salford Art Collection.

Sustaining Photography Blog – Why? Lizzie King

Artist Lizzie King shares why working on the Sustaining Photography project is important to her. Lizzie King is a former Graduate Scholar with the Collection, and is currently studying for her MA in Contemporary Fine Art at the University.

As artists, as makers, as creators there is a journey that results in us adopting processes or ways of making.  We take these processes into our vernacular and use them to describe ourselves, to define our way of practising. The list of these words seems endless: documentary, abstract, commercial, photographer, image maker, artist, content creator… and the list carries on. They don’t just define ourselves but how we are different from others. How about the word ‘ecological’ or ‘eco’ or ‘green’ or ‘sustainable’ or ‘climate aware’? How does this define a maker? How does this mark a difference between one maker and another? In this day and age should these words really be something we can define or differentiate ourselves on? 

My journey towards using greener processes has been born out of a continual curiosity about alternative photographic processes. Years experimenting with different versions and iterations of caffenol (coffee based homemade developer) recipes showed me the extent that these recipes could be pushed to. The thought of the impact that the standard photographic chemicals were having had never particularly crossed my mind until I started to try to make developers from plant matter.  As I explored the possibilities  of using plants in the creation processes and their unique compounds and properties that make particular developers work so well, I started to think about how working this way was really allowing my work to talk about the environment while also being kinder to the environment. I use these plant based processes because I am fascinated by being able to use a wide range of materials in making my imagery. The experimentation and the time spent outside looking intently at nature brings me joy.   

A photograph shows two green anthotype prints, on a rack,  being exposed to the sun.
Anthotypes for Sustianing Photography. Courtesy Lizzie King.

The United Nations recognises that we are in the midst of a climate emergency. There is clear guidance from scientists that the world (let’s be honest, the world’s riches countries) needs to act now to be able to see a change from the current trajectory. What does this look like for our practices? At the end of the day this is about working in a way that is aware of ourselves, our precarious stance on earth, how we are intertwined with the earth. As Timothy Morton puts it, “We are all burnt by ultraviolet rays. We all contain water in about the same ratio as Earth does, and salt water in the same ratio that the oceans do. We are poems about the hyperobject Earth.” (Morton, 2013) 

Our society has done everything it can to see nature as other to who we are rather than accept the reality that we are a part of nature. Can we really afford as a community of makers to have a small grouping of makers who are ‘sustainable.’ Can we progress to a stage where it is common understanding that everyone’s practice is as sustainable as possible?   

Many people say ‘there is no green way of doing this’, ‘Photography is never going to be sustainable’ and ‘The only way to do it green is to not do it at all’. This is not about stopping making. What I hope you get from this zine is that we have choices. We’ve presented a few options for different processes you could adopt. You can choose to make these your own. They might open up a new creative avenue for you.  You might find that making something using an alternative greener process gives you a new aesthetic that you’ve been looking for or a new way to relate to the world around you. Perhaps these processes aren’t for you but reading this can start to raise the question within your way of working: how can I do this better? 

I don’t think I have ever written a piece of writing with more questions in it, but the fact is we don’t have all the answers. Analogue photography has a long history of toxic chemical output and unsustainable mining from the earth. Digital photography has problems with mass server usage for storing on the cloud on top of the precious materials being mined from the earth to create the high-tech equipment. Being aware is the first step to being able to change our ways. I hope that the future will see makers discover more sustainable ways of producing what we make. This is all about producing what we do but better. 

Sustaining Photography is a collaborative project by Lizzie King & Gwen Riley Jones to connect and engage students at the University of Salford with sustainable photographic processes, using produce from the University’s Community Growing Space. The project is based at The University of Salford and has been funded by the Salford Advantage Fund and The University of Salford Art Collection.

Click here to find out more.

Sustaining Photography Blog – How to Make Film Developer from Vegetable Food Waste

Want to give green film developing a go?  Here are the instructions for making film developer from vegetable food waste. 

What you’ll need: 

900ml water 

3 heaped tsp Vitamin C (powdered not tablet) 

9 tsp Soda Crystals (Can usually be found in the household cleaning area) 

Suggestions of foods we have used:  

potato peelings 

spinach, ½ romaine lettuce, and  ½ savoy cabbage 

Red onion, tomatoes, broccoli, green bean, cabbage, bananas 

A person in an orange jumper pours plant-based developing solution into a film developing tank.
Behind the scenes with Sustaining Photography. Courtesy Lizzie King.
A photograph shows plant-based developing solutions in jugs, in a sink with a film developing tank.
Behind the scenes with Sustaining Photography. Courtesy Lizzie King.


Step 1: Place vegetable waste in a container with a lid, a mason jar or pan works well. Cover the vegetable waste with boiling water and leave overnight. Or boil the contents like you would for eating.  (If you are making your tea by boiling veg you could just save the water from this and use it in your developing mix) 

Step 2: After 12 hours remove the vegetable waste and keep the water 

Step 3: Add the vitamin C and the soda crystals into your water (Make sure you are doing this in a container that has extra space. When you add them together as it can fizz up.) 

Step 4: Mix well 

Step 5: You can now develop your film as you normally would but using your homemade developer. 

I. For Ilford HP5 we developed for 15 mins agitating continuously for the first minute then once every minute (Check the resources page for a suggestion on where to look for time information for different films)  

II. Then stop bath and fix as you normally would. 

Step 6: It is safe to just pour this developer down the sink as it only contains things you would find in your kitchen! 

Sustaining Photography is a collaborative project by Lizzie King & Gwen Riley Jones to connect and engage students at the University of Salford with sustainable photographic processes, using produce from the University’s Community Growing Space. The project is based at The University of Salford and has been funded by the Salford Advantage Fund and The University of Salford Art Collection.

Click here to find out more.

Sustaining Photography Exhibition Open & Events Programme Announced!

Over the course of the year, current MA student and past Graduate Scholarship recipient Lizzie King, and socially-engaged photographer Gwen Riley Jones have been working together on Sustaining Photography.

Sustaining Photography is a collaborative project to connect and engage students at the University with sustainable photographic processes. Lizzie and Gwen have been working together throughout the year to grow produce in the Community Growing Space and explore how these can be used to create plant-based alternatives to traditional photographic methods, which use harmful chemicals.

Now Open!

An exhibition showcasing the collaborative artwork Lizzie and Gwen have created during the project so far is now on display in the University’s Community Growing Space. Alongside the artwork, you can see the produce being grown, and find recipes they have developed for the plant-based photographic methods they have used to make the work.

Feeling Inspired? You can now get involved in a series of events being held as part of the wider Sustaining Photography exhibition. The events programme includes artist talks from Edd Carr and Tamsin Green, photography workshops, and portfolio reviews for current students. You can find the full details of each event here.

The Sustaining Photography project is based at The University of Salford and has been funded by the Salford Advantage Fund and The University of Salford Art Collection.