Have You Seen: Images of Protest, Black Lives Matter

Now showing at the People’s History Museum in Manchester.

By Ciara Martin | Last updated 16 February 2024

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This exhibition at Manchester’s People’s History Museum features the images from local photographer Jake Hardy, who attended numerous Black Lives Matter Protests in Manchester during May and June 2020.

On Sunday 31 May 2020, Jake took a series of 66 images.

I sat down with Jake to discuss his experience.

“For me, going to the protests was an incredibly moving and powerful experience. It was overwhelming being there, so I tried to focus my photography on capturing the pain and the raw emotion that others were clearly going through as well.

For some, you could see this was the first time their voices were truly being heard. There was a real mix of emotion. It was uplifting, liberating… but painful – for many they were poking an open wound.

Growing up in a majority white area and school I know myself and many BAME students struggled with racism daily. It’s impossible to translate the pain of racism. Words that can cut you so deep, and make you feel like the smallest person in the world

I hope that by continuing to make our voices heard we can move society into the right direction. No person should ever be judged by the colour of their skin. As modern times seem to keep getting stranger and stranger, we have to stand up for what’s right in this world. I think this is a very unique moment in history, and I hope it can bring about the changes that so many of us are hoping for”

Acquired as part of the People’s History Museum’s collection, a large selection of Jake’s images are on display at the exhibition in their Mini Theatre in Main Gallery One (first floor).

Also known as the national museum of democracy, The People’s History Museum holds the largest collection of political material in Britain.

Located in the heart of Manchester, it is the UK’s ONLY museum entirely dedicated to sharing the stories of the revolutionaries, reformers, workers, voters and citizens who championed, then and now, for change and rallied for rights and equality.

The People’s History Museum holds an eclectic, historic and contemporary collection of banners, badges, posters, artwork, personal items and so much more – spanning four centuries of ideas worth fighting for.

Incredibly moving and beautiful, Jake’s photography from Sunday 31 May 2020 captures the united voice of a generation, from the Manchester we know and love.

Racism has no place here. “All lives can’t matter until Black Lives Matter”.

People’s History Museum are currently seeking donations to support their contemporary collection.

They are looking for items that represent the black community and their role in British political history, including the history of working people and their fight for equality and change. As well as items that represent The Black Lives Matter Movement and other anti-racism campaigns locally in Greater Manchester and nationally across Britain.

People’s History Museum, New Ct St, Manchester M3 3ER