An exhibition looking into metals and minerals and how they are used in photography images is taking place at The Hive in Birmingham next month.

Co-curated by Melanie King, Lecturer in the School of Creative Arts and Industries, The London Alternative Photography Collective present ‘Beyond Silver,’ which will explore the relationship between analogue photography (a photographic term that uses chemistry and light in order to capture an image) and metallurgy (the scientific study of structures and uses of metals). This exhibition demonstrates how various elements are used within photographic image production.

Metals and minerals are of the earth - extracted, purified, dried, cut, moulded, extruded, dissolved and filtered. Photographic images are of the earth, metals and minerals, polished, coated, sensitised, exposed, developed, washed, fixed, displayed and silver has taken a leading role in this history.

From Louis Daguerre’s Daguerreotypes to Henry Fox Talbot’s calotypes in the early 1800s, to today's digital Chromogenic prints - silver is seen as unbeatable when it comes to making a quality, archivable photographic image. However, silver is not the only metal used for image making.

The exhibition will consider the use of silver in photography, as well as shining a light on many of the other metals that are used within photographic image production, in both historical and contemporary practice. In addition to silver, the exhibition will include works which utilise lesser-known metals in photography including iron, copper, tin, aluminium, platinum and palladium.

Exhibiting artists include IIgnacio Acosta, Victoria Ahrens, William Arnold, Alex Boyd, Alice Cazenave, Caitriona Dunnett, Hannah Fletcher, Jo Gane, Kate Goodrich, Martha Gray, Charlotte Greenwood, Constanza Isaza, Ellisa Jane Diver, Soham Joshi, Melanie King, Liane Lang, Sara Mulvey, Andrés Pardo, Oliver Raymond-Barker, Megan Ringrose, Kris Skyla, Sayako Sugawara, Diego Valente and Eileen White.