- Jo Peel in her studio. Photograph © Karina Lax.
Steel City, City on the MoveWed 01 Jul 2015 – Sun 11 Oct 2015 Millennium Gallery
Sheffield and its twin city, Pittsburgh, USA, have both been indelibly shaped by the steel-making industry, which once employed huge numbers of local people. In this new exhibition, artist Jo Peel explores the parallels between England’s ‘Steel City’ and its American counterpart through an immersive kaleidoscope of wall murals, paintings, film and documentation.
‘Sheffield, City on the Move’ was a promotional film produced by the City of Sheffield in the 1970s which has often come to be seen since as a misguidedly optimistic prophecy of the city’s fortunes. In creating this exhibition, Jo Peel seeks to reclaim the ‘Steel City’ nickname as a positive epithet and source of pride, rather than a reminder of industrial failure. By talking to residents of Sheffield and Pittsburgh she will show the immense variety of community and culture which exists within the two cities, and the ways in which our heritage informs our present-day sense of identity.