neil cummings

March 2018

Free Trade

06 May 2002


Manchester Art Gallery
May 2002 - February 2003

Commissioned by Catherine Dickinson

I collaborated with Marysia Lewandowska, on a long term research project that was to coincide with the re-opening of the Manchester Art Gallery (MAG). The research culminated with a project entitled Free Trade, the following text is edited from the final proposal.

Free Trade Our starting point was the simple observation that as objects enter public museum and gallery collections they are inevitably removed from the wider world of exchange. Our project was to  imaginatively reconnect a major collection from the MAG - the Beatson Blair Bequest - to the circuits of trade and exchange from which it originated.

We identified in the Beatson Blair Bequest a beautiful example of Manchester’s particular social, economic and art collecting history, as well as a device with which to explore the history and conventions of the MAG itself.


Manchester Art Gallery
Mosley Sreet
M2 3JL
United Kingdom

53.4787, -2.2414

Broadcast Times

15 Jul 2006

As the exhibition train leaves the platform, we are taken on a documentary journey of "a happy hunting ground for tycoons" the birth of commercial television broadcasting in South West England, in 1961.

Broadcast Times is assembled from film fragments found at the South West Film and Television Archive in Plymouth, and has multiple narratives; including the making and projecting - or broadcasting - of film itself; the entanglements of class, commerce and public service; the use of archives and the 'paraphernalia' of early television.


16 Narrow Quay
United Kingdom

51.4493, -2.5974