Project: Hiddenplace Public Art Festival
Location: Burnley, Lancashire
Cost: £40,000 + VAT
Co-Curator: Noah Rose
Artists: Karen Lyons, Jill Randall, Lucy Bergman, Alison White, Kerry Morrison, Stephen Connelly and Love & Etiquette Foundation
Programme: 6 months
Atoll Service: Joint Lead Artist and Co-Curator for Burnley BC
Project Status: Completed 2009
Awards: CreativityWorks Award 2009
(for ‘Best Creative Solution to a Space’)

Description: Hiddenplace was a 2009 festival of 7 contemporary artist commissions created for the “hidden, disused or overlooked spaces around Burnley Town Centre”. It was conceived and co-curated by Ian Banks collaborating with artist Noah Rose, and responded in part to their previous visioning work prepared on the potential of forgotten culverted waterways in the town for the Borough Council and linked to a BDP urban masterplan, and partly in homage to the Björk song of the same title: “He’s the beautifullest, Fragilest, Still strong, Dark and divine, And the littleness of his movements, Hides himself, He invents a charm that makes him invisible, Hides in the air, Can I hide there too? Hide in the air of him, Seek solace, Sanctuary, In the hidden place…”. The project was awarded an Arts in Pennine Lancashire  CreativityWorks Award in 2009 for ‘Best Creative Solution to a Space’.

Scroll down for more images and videos of the 7 artist commissions….

Karen Lyons describes her Active (walk) Way as: “…Bags of clay were arranged to resemble stone paving slabs lining the river bed. Using my feet, rhythmic textures were formed through the sculpture, emulating the eddies, ebb and flow of the river Calder as it cut its way through each of its culverts, overflowing prescribed channels. The sculpture was ‘performed’ over one week in April 2009….”

Jill Randall’s Eye of the River  also chose to focus on the two rivers that run unnoticed through the town. Randall wanted to float a video camcorder on a specially-designed boat along the rivers Brun and Calder, and that: “literally flush out detritus from the town, functioning like internal organs, and mirroring human vascula”.

Lucy Bergman’s film Reindeer Loves Adelphi is her fictional love story between the derelict Reindeer and Adelphi pubs of Burnley: “…The story is built around an imaginary narrative between the two buildings and attempts to explore the hopes and fears of us as humans growing older and more invisible and also inspire a new view of the buildings..

Kerry Morrison set out in advance her approach in to the process based arts project she called Hidden Places to be that of “process based investigation of place, which will hopefully lead to finding hiddenplaces. What happens once I find the hiddenplaces will depend upon the circumstance of the place, inclusive of people, wildlife, topography”.In 2008 Kerry had previously designed and built a push along portable studio. Her little studio enabled her to explore Burnleys Hiddenplaces “fully equipped with all the artistic paraphernalia that I may need to record and notate elements within the landscape that attract my attention”. For this project, Kerry collaborated with Emily Fallows (left) and Andy Pollard (right), amongst many others. Kerry’s documented works can be seen more fully here.

Visual artist Stephen Connelly in describing his commission ‘The Way I See It’ pointed out that “observation is key to my practice, drawing the tool for translation. One of my interests is to record time and place within the context of forgotten spaces. My objective is to describe what the space is about and at times involves the characters that may reside within”. Hiddenplace for Stephen “not only mirrors my direction but provides an ideal opportunity/ platform to work within a collaborative showcase for the discovery of the unseen conscious side of Burnley”. More background to Stephen’s Hiddenplace proposal can be seen here.

Rizwan Iqbal of local arts and cultural orgnisation Love & Etiquette Foundation and artist Rizwan Riyazuddin developed a proposal for a futuristic graphic novel set in a dystopic Burnley 110 years in the future. The production of the draft novel and artwork coincided with a simulated Hiddenplace 2119 red carpet ‘film premier’ and launch at the District Coffee House in Burnley on 19th May 2009. More background to Love & Etiquette’s graphic novel proposal can be seen here.

Poet Alison White set about first writing the story and then installing, with the assistance of artist Noah Rose, artefacts to create an urban myth around a young Burnley girl who has mysteriously disappeared some years before, leaving at the Hiddenplace site only a pair of old red shoes and a letter to her father who is away on a trip to Pakistan. More background to Alison’s Hiddenplace proposal and insitu installation

Categories: Public Art

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