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Manchester.
I purchased these badges back when I thought my memory would be infallible for ever I’d never have to commit anything to writing, consequently this won’t be a very detailed description of my visit to The Lowry, but these souvenirs do bring back memories.

I arrived at Salford Quays on the tram, which was a first, despite being a regular visitor to Manchester. The trams were something of a mystery to me up to that point, so it was very exciting to see Manchester from a relatively comfortable seat, letting the tram take the strain rather!

I remember Salford looking very new and having something of a buzz about it. The Imperial War Museum’s newest branch, The Imperial War Museum North, in a shiny me building designed by architect Daniel Libeskind had recent opened opposite The Quays in Stratford for example and The Lowry had only been open two years at this point.

Most importantly, it reminds me of the works of LS Lowry, although time has left me with only a general impression of the gallery. The matchstick men plodding across urban, industrial, landscapes are there, but I also recall the landscapes, seascapes and portraits that I hadn’t seen before; his 1936 landscape “A Landmark” was a particular revelation. I seem to recall finding his 1949 work “The Cripples” rather distressing at the time, but I have subsequently come to view it as quite a striking portrayal of people who have traditionally been under-represented in art, but that’s youth for you. When I was seventeen it was relatively easy to see myself plodding across across some of Lowry’s other works, but it would take me another decade to see “The Cripples” in a different light.

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