Jo Lathwood: Making Up

20 January 2024 to 3 March 2024 The Lowry

Image © Jo Lathwood. Photographer: Paul Blakemore

For the opening exhibition of 2024, The Lowry is delighted to present Making Up by visual artist Jo Lathwood

Commissioned by The Lowry, Lathwood will spend four weeks in residence developing, building, and deconstructing this site-responsive installation, offering visitors a view behind the scenes into the functional spaces that are usually hidden out of sight. In the first few weeks, gallery visitors will be able to watch Lathwood working daily in person or via live-streamed CCTV footage from The Lowry’s basement workshops (11am–5pm Tuesday–Sunday). Over the following weeks, they will see the installation morph and grow in real-time as it is constructed inside the gallery space.

Salford and Manchester’s higgledy-piggledy landscapes of railways, roads, and canals stacked one upon another are reflected in The Lowry’s own architecture, with the building containing several dead ends and unexpected viewpoints. Inspired by this, and by her long-term interest in journeys and movement, Lathwood offers traveling backwards, undoing, and turning around as potentially poignant aspects of a sustainable future.

Lathwood makes sculptures and large-scale installations that regularly respond to a particular site, event, material, or process. Her project at The Lowry will open with a circular rotating platform made from recycled timber. Over the opening days of the exhibition, Lathwood will build a raised boardwalk to the structure; eventually inviting the audience to make a simple journey and become part of a circular system.

 In a world of growth and consumption, where the mantra ‘onwards and upwards’ is often at odds with environmentally friendly living, this interactive installation will encourage visitors to move through and around the gallery space, but then, pause, be still, and reflect. The artist’s building materials—all reused or recycled—will be repurposed and distributed during the final days of the exhibition, leaving no trace and minimal waste.

Lathwood’s installation is to be re-purposed into functional small wooden boxes that will be given away for free to the public at the end of the exhibition. Her Open Manifesto for Making Sustainable Artwork (2019) reminds us that future progress is not linear, but circular.

Alongside the permanent LS Lowry Collection, The Lowry presents a regularly changing programme of contemporary exhibitions commissioned by or curated in-house by The Lowry. This exhibition was made possible thanks to Arts Council England and Salford City Council. 

Listing Information

Exhibition Title: Jo Lathwood: Making Up

Exhibition Dates: 20th January–3rd March 2024

Venue: The Lowry, Pier 8, The Quays, Salford, M50 3AZ

Further Information: thelowry.com