Nimco Ali is a British Somali feminist, writer and social activist. She is co-founder and director of Daughters of Eve, a survivor-led organisation which has helped to transform the approach to ending female genital mutilation (FGM). Nimco will be talking about her current work to ensure Somaliland, where 98% of women and girls are affected, enacts legislation to ban FGM.
Quartier Perdu is the anticipated new collection from multi-award winning short story writer, poet, playwright and journalist, Sean O'Brien.
O’Brien is perhaps Britain’s most decorated living poet, being the only poet to have won the Forward and TS Elliot prizes three times. New collection brings together stories inspired by terror, science and the supernatural, lit with the hue of the Victorian gothic. Some stories written in direct response to the famous Literature and Philosophy Library in Newcastle, where O’Brien lives and is the Professor of Creative Writing at the university.
The Portico Library was established in 1806 and remains in its original purpose-built venue in the heart of Manchester City Centre, still fulfilling its original function and welcoming visitors six days a week for exhibitions, dining and events. Its collection was compiled throughout the colonial period and reflects the complex relationships that developed between Asia and Britain throughout the 19th century. Join Asia Triennial Manchester 2018 artist and former Portico exhibitor Saima Rasheed to learn about the library’s history, collection and current exhibition ENTWINED: Knowledge & power in the age of Captain Cook.
Dancer, artist and curator Risa Takita has developed a new interactive performance through research into the history of Manchester at The Portico Library. Specially commissioned for Asia Triennial Manchester 2018, Risa’s new work raises questions about the meaning of identity, history and culture and draws inspiration and insight from the library’s connections with the wider world over the last three centuries.
Jennifer Little will conduct a tour in British Sign Language (with no spoken English). She will introduce The Portico Library’s building and collection, and give insights on the present exhibition, ENTWINED: Knowledge & power in the age of Captain Cook.
August 2018 marks 250 years since Captain James Cook set sail on a voyage of discovery considered by many to be the most significant in world history. Inspired by some of The Portico Library’s most fascinating items – first editions of Cook’s illustrated journals and the accompanying publications – we will select and present items from the collection that expose some of the motivating ideologies and streams of thought behind the encounters of the period.
Please note that the library is accessed via a staircase. There is no lift but a stair lift is available via the rear entrance.
From Giotto to Michelangelo, Dante to Petrarch, Florence to Rome, Italy's Renaissance left an indelible mark on the Victorians. Former Portico Librarian, Emma Marigliano, explores how British artists and poets reinterpreted and mythologised Italian culture for the British public.
This event is brought to you by the Dante Alighieri Society in Manchester with delicious Italian nibbles and wine provided after the talk.
This talk is brought to you during The Portico Library's exhibition, ENTWINED: Knowledge & power in the age of Captain Cook. August 2018 marks 250 years since Captain James Cook set sail on a voyage of discovery considered by many to be the most significant in world history. Inspired by some of The Portico Library’s most fascinating items – first editions of Cook’s illustrated journals and the accompanying publications – we will select and present items from the collection that expose some of the motivating ideologies and streams of thought behind the encounters of the period.
This series will present seventeen artistic personalities, selecting some examples from different centuries: we will look at their lives and their art, put them into context, and as a result of the analysis of their biographies, we will acknowledge how their identity as female artists affected their careers, their work and their role for the following generations. These four sessions can be joined as stand-alone events or attended as a course to receive the full benefit of Sara’s inspiring teaching style. These sessions are perfect for anyone who wishes to strengthen their knowledge of the History of Art.
David Winnard of Discover the Wild will introduce the evening with a brief history of gin and from there he will lead a tasting. With David’s amazing knowledge of foraging and the natural world, he will explain the way that gin is produced and infused with some wonderful flavours. Later on, Theresa Sowerby will perform some poems with her inimitable humour and gusto! Three cocktails are included in the price and some simple and delicious food accompaniments will be provided. There are few more splendid settings in Manchester in which to enjoy a gin tasting!
Exhibiting artist Jane Lawson leads a collaborative session to develop a handbook of methods to identify and respond to ‘fake news’. Discuss the history of the phenomenon and its relation to new technologies.
During the Cotton Famine, an outpouring of poetry told of the despair and suffering endured by the people of Lancashire. Academics at the University of Exeter have been working to build an accessible database of these poems and to launch this resource there will be a mixture of recitation and song set in the context of the project and this important history. As well as entertainment, there will also be information provided on how to use the database. Come along to this event in celebration of the database launch to hear the poems and pay tribute to the past.
‘“They slowly paced the gradual ascent”: taking time with Jane Austen’s novels.’ This talk will propose that slow reading of key sentences and paragraphs – awarding them the close attention more often invited by poetry – can draw us into the heart of Jane Austen’s writing. Examples will be chosen from Pride and Prejudice, Mansfield Park, Emma and Persuasion. Bill Hutchings is an Honorary Research Fellow at The University of Manchester.
Join the exhibitors to hear about the background of the works on display and the ideas and processes behind their practices. Refreshments will be available, and the artists will be joined by Allie Johns, Senior Lecturer in Digital Marketing & Digital Human Behaviour at Manchester Metropolitan University. Allie will draw on her accompanying short article ‘A little digital learning is a dangerous thing. Or is it?’
The Chanteuse aka Lucy Hope, has released an album of songs written by eminent French writer, Patrick Modiano (Nobel Prize for Literature in 2014). It is little known that Modiano penned exquisite lyrics for some of the famous yéyé recording artists in the late 60s/early 70s. The Chanteuse will be bringing these songs to a 'salon' at the Portico Library.
Hear from the artists featured in our June 2018 exhibition Beautiful Monsters and ask…
The Portico Library will be closed to the public and library members for a private wedding event.
Take part in a free event dedicated to Manchester’s Women, such as Margaret Ashton, who are specifically associated with The Portico Library and who celebrate Protest, Democracy and Freedom of Speech.
On the 16th of August 1819 Manchester was witness to the most dramatic political incident in British history - so says Ed Glinert of New Manchester Walks. 60,000 people met at St Peter's Field, near The Portico Library, to demonstrate for the right to vote and against the unjust laws of the period.
A Patron of The Portico Library, Melvin Burgess is an award-winning author of children's and young adult fiction. Often referred to as 'the godfather of teen fiction' by the British press, his novel Junk, published in 1996, was widely lauded for its realistic portrayal of youth, drugs and sex.
Guided tours start from The Bank Pub as your guide will begin with a short history of the old Georgian streets in the vicinity, before moving on to The Portico Library for an in-depth exploration of its collection, curios and characters. Book asap as these tours fill quickly!
Join us on international Darwin Day for a talk that traces human evolution from 8m years ago to today's global population. Dr Reinmar Hager (University of Manchester) identifies the key phases in our human history and asks what our future looks like.
Using artist Nicola Dale’s work as a starting point, experts from different fields of study debate what aspects of “knowledge” are gained or lost through the rapid changes in communication and technology.
“Tutto il cielo e’ splendente” is the first Italian translation of the work of poet Christina Rossetti. This new book will be presented with readings in both languages and a musical interlude. Italian wine and nibbles provided.