Industrial Museum puts spotlight on sculptor's shadow art

Bradford Telegraph and Argus: Artist Steve Gumbley with his From Horsepower to Hydrogen Power sculpture Artist Steve Gumbley with his From Horsepower to Hydrogen Power sculpture

A Bradford-born artist is bringing some of his most celebrated work to life in a new exhibition at the city’s Industrial Museum.

“Shadow Machines and Singing Paintings”, by visual artist Steve Gumbley, will be displayed at the Council-run museum in Eccleshill from this Saturday until Sunday, March 30.

Alongside videos and photographs of his own work, the exhibition will also include a number of objects from Bradford Museums’ reserve collections chosen by Mr Gumbley, including film projectors, gaswork models, Jowett cars and traction engines.

“I’m really pleased to be able to exhibit at the Industrial Museum, as it’s one of Bradford’s hidden gems,” he said.

“This is the first time these pieces have all appeared together as a show, and there should be something of interest for all ages and tastes. I am hoping the use of moving images will make this a bit livelier than other exhibitions people might see.”

One of the main centrepieces in the collection will be “The Piccolo Travelling Cinema”, an elaborate fairground-style piece made in collaboration with Mr Gumbley’s filmmaker son, Jack Lockhart.

The exhibition will also feature a shadowgraph machine, entitled “From Horsepower to Hydrogen Power”, originally commissioned for the Slow Art sculpture trail at Bolton Abbey.

The large revolving table will project moving shadows of power stations, electricity pylons and galloping horses around the walls of the museum.

Mr Gumbley will give a free lunchtime talk and tour between noon and 1pm this Sunday.

A further workshop will take place on Thursday, February 6, giving visitors the chance to bring in objects that cast interesting shadows and have their creations photographed and filmed.

Mr Gumbley, who was born on Barkerend Road but now lives between Hebden Bridge and Todmorden in the Calder Valley, specialises in public art commissions, exhibition design, sculpture, theatre shows and large-scale photographs.

His recent work includes set design for The Great Gatsby, a public bus shelter at Malham for Chrysalis Arts, and a mobile Museum of Ice Cream.

Councillor Susan Hinchcliffe, Bradford Council’s executive member for culture, said: “Bradford Industrial Museum is a fitting venue for this new exhibition, which explores industry and technology through a series of intriguing installations.”

For further information about exhibitions and events being held at the Council’s museums and galleries, visit


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