Handmade is a series of art projects that tell the stories of the materials that surround us; where they come from, how they are made, who is involved. Each piece will centre around a different material that is abundant in the built environment, and how our proximity to it implicates us in local and global ecologies and economies.
Handmade to connect the tangible and the everyday to large and complex environmental and social stories. Handmade was developed in response to the way that these big global stories can often feel alienating, leaving audiences to feel detached and distant from the things that matter most.
Handmade projects may vary across artistic medium, scale, and context. The only criteria for a Handmade project are that it finds a way to reveal the hidden connections between the local and global through exploring the materials that make up the world around us. They may, for example, be installations, audio pieces, performances, walks, participatory projects. Examples of the kind of materials that may be explored are clay, carbon, plastic, silicon or lithium.
I am currently planning a series of Handmade projects for 2022. If you are a museum looking to offer your audience new ways to explore your collection, a researcher looking to share your work in new ways, or something else entirely, it would be great to chat about possibilities.
See below for the pilot project and ideas in development. The pilot project Titanium Dioxide was originally created as a standalone project called Handmade and future branding will reflect this as the project grow.
A one-hour audio experience using bone-conducting headphones that invite audiences to take a walk and see the materials around them in new ways. The story follows titanium dioxide, the base pigment in almost all paint and primary pigment in almost all white paint. It follows this chemical from the formation of the earth to mines, ships, chemical plants, factories, building sites, and the space you are in.
Titanium Dioxide premiered at Exeter Library shortly before the UK went into its first lockdown. It is available to tour in English and German (was due to be shared in Austria).
Paula Crutchlow - dramaturg | Angela Owiti - voice actor | Josh Barfoot - sound designer | Ben Bowen - graphic designer | Paula Crutchlow, Stephen Hodge, Richard Rochester, Ian Cook - playtest group
Sand. Audio-journeys through microscopic sand landscapes. Learning about the geology, geography, and economy of sand.
Charcoal. Inviting audiences to make charcoal with naturally fallen timber and co-create large scrolls depicting the woodlands in which we make the charcoal. Learning about the journey of carbon and the importance of capturing it.
Clay. Inviting people to design and builder a shelter using discarded bricks. Telling stories of shelter, bricks, and clay.