Community & Public

Community & Public

A selection of our projects, past & recent

Song of The Pine

Commissioned by the AHRC project, INTO THE FOREST led by Dr Eleanor Barraclough. 

Created for Light Up Trails – 2023.

In a world now assessing the climate crisis, our piece aimed to engage the public with the importance of trees and forest ecology. The project aimed to connect people with a greater sense of agency and try to introduce practical local strategies in England to promote better ways of living. This was done through a number of partners including the National Forest.

Our piece worked with a botanic garden, the Sir Harold Hillier gardens in Dorset to engage the public as part of a night time winter walking trail. The trail was created by Light Up Trails. We used early medieval literature and storytelling traditions of northern Europe as the means to connect the audience with the life cycle of the pine tree. The piece was a modern framing of storytelling tradition with voice recordings by Dr Eleanor Barraclough.

A 5.1 surround soundtrack was created as well as the projection onto pine trees creating an outdoor immersive environment within the trees.

This work was seen by 70,000 people and the piece was very well received, proving to be the most popular installation on the walking trail. 

ENGAGEMENT: Alongside the main commission, we also ran an educational strand for local primary school children to engage with the project. This was organised by Light Up Trails and overseen by Dr. Barraclough and We created a simple template of one of the buildings on the site, and provided that to the children for them to imagine their own ideas of what a forest can be.  These artworks were then projected as part of the wider trail for all the visitors to see.

Codex

“Did Barry just put on Wales’ best Christmas lights switch-on? … this Christmas Barry residents can proudly boast an event that would rival most capital cities.” – Wales Online A projection mapped extravaganza which was the prequel to the turning of the town Christmas Lights. Created for The Vale of Glamorgan Council and projected onto Barry Library in Kings Square.

Horizon

HORIZON represents the journey of humankind through time, how we have discovered our place in the universe through what we see, and how that view has changed through time as we go beyond the limit of our horizon. 

With mathematics as the core structure and language of the universe, HORIZON suggests how its voice has been heard & interpreted through the tides of time.  Beginning with the scientific teachings of the English 13th century polymath Robert Grosseteste and journeying to 21st century imagery from the Jet Propulsion Laboratories at NASA, we see how our knowledge is shaped by the horizon of our viewpoint, by what is visible and invisible to us, and how we still seek answers from where we stand on how we should live.

 

This co-commission was created by Ross Ashton and Karen Monid of the Projection Studio, with scientists from JPL-NASA and Ordered Universe team members, for its world premiere at Napa Lighted Art Festival and European premiere at Light Up Poole.

Please see the photographs for stunning results.

Victorian Speed of Light

Victorian Speed of Life was created for the AHRC funded research project, ’Diseases Of Modern Life’; which was led by Professor Sally Shuttleworth. We created a projection and sound piece that was intended to engage the public with the key themes of Victorian stress and disease that the project uncovered. This project is a good example of how we work with academic research. 

Professor Shuttleworth’s material speaks to human experience, in this case how it felt first-hand to live through the change from mainly rural life to industrialisation. We noticed a repeating chain around action and response within those experiences and that became our narrative arc to connect us to the past. This allowed us to include the history and science of 19th century industrialisation and technology but to concentrate our focus onto the people who lived with these changes and their consequences of overwhelm of mind, of private life & public life, of work, of the communities they lived in, and their environment. 

To tell this story, we used the perspective of the Victorians themselves. We used contemporary documents to build the entire script only from their own words and we researched for historical images and audio, such as recordings of actual telegraph machines; to creatively construct the world they lived in. We showed our audience the enormous changes that the Victorians went through; and that their response to these changes is very similar to our responses to stresses today. We wanted the audience to see their own lives in the material; so that these people of an age perceived as ‘other’ now don’t seem ‘other’ anymore.

ENGAGEMENT: If you had asked our audience before seeing the projection, whether they were interested in Victorian stress and disease, and would like to know more, they are unlikely to have said yes. However, the art provided a point of connection which was able to bring them into the subject. The projection was a free public event that was open to any member of the public passing by. Having seen the projection, they were then given the opportunity to meet academics face to face at an exhibition space set up close to the projection area. In one night of projection, the academics spoke face-to-face with 2000 members of the public. 

OTHER FESTIVALS: The projection was taken to two other light festivals in Poole in Dorset and at The University of Otago, in Dunedin, New Zealand.

Spiritus - Light and Darkness

Spiritus – Light & Darkness was created with Durham Universities’ Ordered Universe as part of Project Cosmos.  We were partnered with academics from the History Department of Durham, alongside astronomers from the Department of Computational Cosmology.  These included medievalist Giles Gasper and cosmologists Carlos Frenk and Richard Bower.

Using images and ideas of the workings of the physical and metaphysical cosmos, this artwork discusses ideas of body and form.  The medieval cosmos was expressed through the human view of angels maintaining a universe in accordance with the will of God. 

The sound included a special music arrangement of the responsory, ’O vos angeli’ composed by the 12th century German abbess, Hildegard von Bingen and a  Cherubic Hymn from the Orthodox tradition.  The instrumental arrangements drew on the visual elements of the piece, using instruments depicted and associated with angels from the medieval period onwards, such as bells and harps.

The work was developed for the Cheriton Light Festival and then shown at the Berlin Festival of Lights at the Nikolai Kirche, Berlins oldest church.  

SPIRITUS was then adapted to be projected at Cambridge as part of the e-Luminate Festival where it was projected onto the Old School and Senate House buildings in the centre of Cambridge University, simultaneously.   Later it was shown at the Night of Heritage Light in Oxford, where it was projected onto the Natural History Museum.

A Certain Amount of Courage

Created by Karen Monid with The Projection Studio. Commissioned by Leeds Light Night. This piece celebrates Leeds Suffragettes, Mary Gawthorpe & Leonora Cohen. The voices heard are all local volunteers. Original portraits by Suman Kaur.

 

Animal

ANIMAL was Inspired by the AHRC project, INTO THE FOREST led by Dr. Eleanor Barraclough. 

Created for the Cheriton Light Festival – 2020.

Animal was Inspired by Dr Eleanor Barraclough’s work on the forest themes and the podcasts that she had produced from that research.

Animal was an experimental work in using Psychoacoustics in a public urban environment.

The soundtrack and imagery start in the modern day and then lead the viewer back to a Mesolithic landscape at the end of the last ice age.