“A practice as research project exploring relationships between space, place, and memory making.” Commissioned by the Culture Company and produced for the City of Culture 2013, Austins: Memory and Place considers the relationship between site and memory in a culturally significant location in Derry~Londonderry: Austins Department Store. Often cited as the oldest department store in the world, as a location in Derry~Londonderry, Austins is a unique site where a number of communities come into contact with each other to work, shop, eat, train for careers in retail, or just browse. Austins: Memory and Place is a situated art project considering the dynamics of individual and collective acts of memory-making and their relationship to the places they memorialize. Conceived and directed by Paul Devlin, and produced by Adrian O’Connell, the project was developed through collaboration with a number of associated artists alongside students from the University of Ulster’s School of Creative Arts and Technologies in Derry~Londonderry. The project seeks to usefully collide creative strategies drawn from situated art practices, heritage and radical curatorial practices, and participatory arts. In the work we are especially interested in exploring the ways in which intangible heritage, memory-making, and the impact of space on our everyday lives might be thought of as interconnected. The early stages of the project, along with a number of smaller actions, was driven by two primary events: Memory Store, a large-scale, single-day reminiscence event staged in the store in November 2013, and The Big Shop Show, a series of promenade and immersive performances staged twice nightly in December 2013. The Austins: Memory and Place website extends the conversations that began with these staged encounters and live art events. Our website aims both to document that early work and to extend and deepen these conversations by providing an open-ended participatory archive of memories associated with this iconic location in Derry~Londonderry.
|Publication status||Published - 6 Jan 2014|
- situated art
- site specific performance
- city of culture
- participatory arts