Welcome to Quays Culture, the home of inspiring digital, interactive art at MediaCityUK, Salford Quays. Here you can find out about our exciting, free participatory art projects that bring together local communities, artists pushing the boundaries of what digital art can achieve, and an illustrious group of organisations that call Salford Quays home. Please browse our site to learn more about us, our projects and how to get involved!

Looking back at Lightwaves 2016

By on February 1, 2017

In December 2016, Salford Quays and MediaCityUK became home to 9 large-scale, digital light artworks as part of Lightwaves, the UK’s biggest digital light festival. The programme was our most ambitious to date, with a brand new commission as well as presentations of work from both UK and international artists. Heart Beat by GNI Projects warmed the hearts of many as they connected with their friends and loved ones to complete the circuit and bring the artwork to life on the Lowry Plaza. Voyage, by Aether and Hemera, proved to be a favourite; visitors were able to change the colour of the origami-esque boats using their mobile phones, lighting up the water in a multitude of ways long into the night. World-famous Blackpool Illuminations visited Salford for the first time, with BBC favourites Dr Who and The Daleks amongst the selection. SHINE Emerging Artists took over the MediaCityUK Gardens, with interactive works by Fixed Grinn Collective and Edyta Masior. In keeping with the history of The Quays, a shipping container housed a selection of films as part of the Northern Artist Film Competition. We are delighted to hear that One Square Mile, a co-commission with the University of Salford, will feature in film festivals and be screened at HOME in the future.

Brilliant, great for the family and getting outside in the Winter

Events over the opening weekend sparked intrigue and delight, with visitors getting involved in a number of ways. Honour Choir opened the festival on Friday evening with a stunning performance; a light graffiti workshop was held in the Lowry Outlet, combining LED technology with clever camera work to create vibrant and unique imagery; GNI Projects held an Artist Talk where they discussed their creative process and influences; there was even something for the little ones to enjoy, as we teamed up with Baby Moves for a special sensory workshop and tour.

Great event, we have 4 children (ranging from age 2 – 14) and they all enjoyed it – a rare thing!

Over 350,000 visitors enjoyed seeing the location lit up in new and innovative ways. We loved seeing people engaging with the artworks across Salford Quays and MediaCityUK, from enjoying the interactive technology to taking selfies with Spongebob! The event was ranked #2 ‘best things to do in Britain’ by The Telegraph and featured on BBC Breakfast during its launch day. We’re grateful to everyone involved in making Lightwaves such a huge success, from our partners, to volunteers, suppliers and extra staff. If you missed it, see some of the highlights on social media using the hashtag #Lightwaves16

Looking Ahead – 2017

The new year seems to be moving along at full speed with lots of exciting developments. We’re currently working on a project, Duet, with Invisible Flock and Quicksand in celebration of the UK and India’s year of cultural exchange. Duet anonymously connects participants from the UK and India, allowing them to build a unique relationship with someone on the other side of the world for up to a year. Participants are invited to exchange details of their lives by answering one question a day through an app. Prompted by duet, a participant gradually builds a picture of their partner and their surroundings through shared messages. The app is due to launch soon, stay tuned for more details.






Posted in: Uncategorized

Lightwaves 2016: Opening Weekend Highlights

By on November 22, 2016

With December on the horizon, Lightwaves is in its final stages of preparation before opening on the 9th December. There’s an action-packed opening weekend for you to enjoy, see below for details: Honour Choir Performance – Friday 9th December, 19:00

Quays Culture Visits: SIGNAL Festival

By on November 2, 2016

October saw the return of SIGNAL Festival in Prague. Devoted to presenting the very best in light, multimedia art and creativity, SIGNAL takes over the city with a range of indoor and outdoor installations for the duration of 4 days.

SHINE Interview: 3 Emerging Artists, 3 New Commissions

By on October 25, 2016

The SHINE Emerging Artists Programme, in partnership with Light Night Leeds, sees 3 light artists present brand new commissions to the public in Leeds and Salford. SHINE  aims to identify, nurture, and develop new artistic talent. Commissioned artists are awarded bursaries

Quays Culture visits Sweden for Lights in Alingsas Festival

By on October 18, 2016

Quays Culture’s Programme Manager, Laura, and Producer, Lucy, recently visited Sweden for the Lights in Alingsas festival. Here Laura gives us an insight into their weekend, highlighting the importance of community spirit in making this event magical: As the dark

Interview With GNI Projects: Meet The Team Behind ‘Heart Beat’

By on October 4, 2016

For this year’s Lightwaves festival we’ve commissioned GNI Projects, who are set to create a brand new piece: Heart Beat. Visitors will be encouraged to make a connection of love or friendship with this large-scale work, by joining hands in

International Symposium ‘Light, Arts, Cities’ at Leeds Light Night this October

By on September 20, 2016

The Light Up the North Network & Light Night Leeds are set to host Light, Arts, Cities, an international symposium on Friday 7th October 2016. The symposium has been designed to explore 4 key themes in relation to light festivals and their

Highlights: Blackpool Illuminations

By on September 20, 2016

This year Quays Culture will be hosting some of the infamous Blackpool Illuminations as part of our annual LIGHTWAVES digital art festival from December 9th-18th 2016, outdoors at Salford Quays and MediaCityUK. LIGHTWAVES once again presents a new, large-scale contemporary

Highlights: Ars Electronica Festival

By on September 14, 2016

As Digital Programmer for The Lowry and Creative Producer for Quays Culture, Lucy Dusgate is one busy lady. In this blog she talks us through a recent visit to Ars Electronica festival in Linz. Inferno Autumn is the start of

Broken by Motionhouse: Dancing Through The Elements

By on August 5, 2016

On July 16th, an audience of thousands amassed on the Piazza at MediaCityUK to witness the 70 minute elemental journey that is Broken by Motionhouse. Staged for the first time ever outdoors, audiences were wowed by the strong visuals created