With DodoLab & Broken City Lab in Windsor, ON

November 24, 2010 by · Comments Off on With DodoLab & Broken City Lab in Windsor, ON 

From Windsor to Detroit (McKee Park)

I’ve just returned from a research trip to Ontario, Canada with DodoLab where we spent a week planning new projects and doing a site visit to Windsor, Ontario for a batch of projects next Autumn with local artist-led group, Broken City Lab. Windsor is on the south side of the Detroit river from Detroit itself and, whilst being one of the earliest settlements in Canada, owes much of its former prosperity to Detroit’s auto industry. Today it is a town with serious industrial decline, urban blight and heavy pollution from the surrounding heavy industry and the vast numbers of trucks rolling across the Ambassador Bridge from the US into Canada.

Over the next year we aim to participate in DodoLab’s ongoing, intermittent residency in Windsor culminating in a week-long anarchaeological exploration of the city and the history of its futures. Building on the process we are developing through our current series of events here in London, City As Material, we’ll aim to work with local people in and around Windsor to create a series of shareable publications with bookleteer that can begin not just to map out the imagined futures of the past as created by the City and corporations, but also to project new ones based on hopes and aspirations of the grassroots communities who live there now.

DodoLab collaboration

June 24, 2010 by · 3 Comments 

Proboscis is collaborating in a series of labs, artworks and interventions with artist/curator Andrew Hunter of DodoLab. So far, DodoLabs have been run at the World Environmental Education Congress in Montreal (May 09); Confederation Centre, Prince Edward Island (Aug 09) the Guelph Jazz Festival (Sept 09), Rijeka, Croatia (June 2010). More labs and workshops are planned for  2010, including in the UK. DodoLab is supported by the Musagetes Foundation and the School of Architecture, University of Waterloo, Canada.

A continuing element of the collaboration centers on using bookleteer to create artists books, documentation, workbooks, storycubes and other publications about DodoLab and its activities which you can see and download them here. DodoLab was the founding member of the bookleteer alpha club.

DodoLab is a dynamic and experimental project exploring issues of  resilience in places undergoing change and urban regeneration. The lab creates performances, artworks, interventions, events and education projects through an engagement with sites and communities. They use communication and social tools (such as posters, tagging, personal media devices, puppet figures and outdoor cafes) that are ubiquitous in the city.

DodoLab Montreal, Canada
The first DodoLab was held in Montréal in May 2009 at the 5th World Environmental Education Congress – a creative intervention in the exhibition hall and out and about in Montréal itself. Proboscis and the DodoLab team created a series of projects engaging the congress delegates in questioning concepts of sustainability. Giles Lane devised and a facilitated a social mapping and StoryCube activity engaging several hundred delegates in exploring their interconnections and ideas on sustainability and resilience.

DodoLab PEI, Charlottetown, Canada
DodoLab PEI is was hosted by the Confederation Centre Art Gallery and explored  green space in the city, notably the Experimental Farm which is due to be redeveloped. Proboscis took part in creating and distributed seedbombs at the local Farmer’s Market, designing books, and undertaking research into the Experimental Farm Station for our new work, In Good Heart, (by Alice Angus), which considered the shift from rural to urban and the perception of ‘farm’. In Good Heart was exhibited as part of the show Dig Up My Heart: Artistic Practice in the Field curated by Shauna McCabe at the Confederation Centre Gallery in summer 2010.

DodoLab Riejka, Croatia
Alice Angus joined DodoLab in Reijka in June 2010 to research a new video installation and series of works on paper about Rijeka Market and its many traders. Dodolab are working in Rijeka in 2010 with the city and local groups to explore perceptions of Rijeka, collaboratively examining ideas about the city and its future with a particular emphasis on the role of young people.

Background
Proboscis collaboration with Dodolab grows our work with RENDER, Andrew Hunters previous project. Our past collaborative projects have included At the Water’s Edge, a new work specifically for the atrium of the University of Waterloo School of Architecture in Cambridge exploring the social, cultural and natural histories of the Grand River; Anarchaeology and The Accidental Menagerie.

Follow Proboscis’ collaboration with DodoLab here

dodolab website

dodolab twitter

October Newsletter

November 2, 2009 by · Comments Off on October Newsletter 

NOW & UPCOMING

bookleteer.com
Our new web app for creating Diffusion eBooks and StoryCubes was deployed at the end of September and is now in an ‘alpha’ testing phase. A number of people have been invited to help us test the fledgling service and put it through its paces in preparation for a wider public ‘beta’ test next year. Follow our progress on twitter and on the bookleteer blog, or alternatively take part in one of our ‘Pitch Up & Publish’ sessions where you’ll get a free bookleteer test account and help to learn how to make eBooks and StoryCubes.
http://bookleteer.comhttp://bookleteer.com/bloghttp://twitter.com/bookleteer

bookleter alpha club
Proboscis has launched a supporters’ club offering advance access during the ‘alpha’ phase (up to 5 user accounts, access to APIs, pitch up & publish workshops & a Proboscis artists’ bookwork). Funds raised will go towards development of the bookleteer public beta which we hope to launch in Spring 2010. Alpha Club members will be honoured on the site as founder sponsors, and membership will be exclusive to those who join during the alpha phase. We’re excited that our first two members are DodoLab and Architecture Centre Network.
http://bookleteer.com/blog/2009/10/alpha-club/http://bookleteer.com/blog/alpha-club/

arte.mov and Mobilefest, Brazil
Proboscis will be showing a new installation piece as part of the Mobilefest Festival, in Sao Paulo at MIC November 11-17.
http://www.mobilefest.org
Giles Lane will be presenting at the arte.mov festival symposium in Belo Horizonte on November 13th as well as devising a creative project about the city during his stay.
Giles will also be participating in arte.mov’s symposium in Salvador de Bahia on the 17-19th November.
http://www.artemov.net

With Our Ears To The Ground
Proboscis has been commissioned by Green Heart Partnership with Hertfordshire County Council to explore peoples ideas about community. The project focuses on four very different types of community in order to get a broad range of opinions across the county: in Watford, Stevenage, rural North Hertfordshire and the commuter areas of Broxbourne. It focuses on finding out the reasons why people get on with each other and feel part of the community and is about developing a better understanding of our communities in order to help Hertfordshire County Council and its partners to plan their work supporting communities over the next few years.
http://withourearstotheground.wordpress.comhttp://twitter.com/ears2theground

City As Material Course
Giles Lane is leading a course for students from Vassar College, New York State, USA who are on an international study program in London. It is a co-creative course for students to explore the city, investigate how other artists and creative people have used it as an artistic medium, and devise their own personal creative interventions.
http://proboscis.org.uk/1369/city-as-material/

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RECENT ACTIVITIES

lift @ home’s Hands on Barcelona’s Informational Membrane
Giles was an invited speaker at the Citilab workshop in Barcelona, Spain, October 24:
http://proboscis.org.uk/1431/liftlab-barcelona/

At the Water’s Edge: Grand River Sketches
Alice Angus’ large format work of drawings and video was installed in Render’s main exhibition space in Waterloo, Canada September 23rd to October 30th. It was accompanied by screenings of Alice’s film Topographies & Tales, made with Joyce Majiski.
http://render.uwaterloo.ca/2009/09/

Arteleku’s My Map Is Not Your Map
Giles was an invited speaker at the workshop in Donostia-San Sebastian, Spain, September 23-25:
http://proboscis.org.uk/1396/arteleku-my-map-is-not-your-map/

DodoLab PEI, Charlottetown, Canada
Proboscis took part in another DodoLab in August, this time in the province of Prince Edward Island, in Canada’a Atlantic Maritimes. There we helped create and distribute seedbombs at the local Farmer’s Market, design eBooks for questionnaires, research into the Experimental Farm Station and worked on some large-scale drawings.
http://proboscis.org.uk/1357/dodolab-pei/

New Diffusion Titles
The Postcard Places Project by Lisa Hirmer with Laura Knap http://diffusion.org.uk/?p=1602>
In the Shadow of Senate House by Hatherley, McNeile, Downing & Leslie http://diffusion.org.uk/?p=1575
The Rustification of Henry Thomas Brown by Andrew Thomas Hunter http://diffusion.org.uk/?p=1562
DodoLab Wants to Know: What Are The Signs of a Creative City? http://diffusion.org.uk/?p=1352
DodoLab Wants to Know: About Green Space by Lisa Hirmer http://diffusion.org.uk/?p=1347
An A-Z of The Ting: Theatre of Mistakes by Marie-Anne Mancio http://diffusion.org.uk/?p=1327
Ethnographic Notebooks, British Museum Melanesia Project http://diffusion.org.uk/?p=1301
Dodolab Wants To Know http://diffusion.org.uk/?p=1295
The Lunar House ‘Re-enactment’ by Tony White http://diffusion.org.uk/?p=1292
Estado de presencia por Cristina Luna http://diffusion.org.uk/?p=1281
The Octuplet: Story of Our Lives by Babette Wagenvoort http://diffusion.org.uk/?p=1245
Le Corbeau / The Raven by Edgar Allan Poe tr. Stéphane Mallarmé http://diffusion.org.uk/?p=1238
More Diffusion Shareable Notebooks http://diffusion.org.uk/?p=1227
Blakewalking by Tim Wright http://diffusion.org.uk/?p=1223
Sutton Grapevine: Youth Group Storyboard by Alice Angus & Orlagh Woods http://diffusion.org.uk/?p=1217

Hertfordshires Many Voices

October 30, 2009 by · Comments Off on Hertfordshires Many Voices 

We have been working on Ears to the Ground for around 3 months now and the phase of being out there talking to people and doing activities is almost over with our energy now being focused into how to condense over 200 voices and quotes into a small publication. We’ve been roving around Hertfordshire meeting young and old, talking to them in groups, in their homes, at events. As well as the many people and groups we have met we have; set up a stall in Watford Market to talk to market goers,  set up outside Broxbourne Station to speak to commuters, set up a  map outside  Stevenage Job Centre and annotated it with post it notes of comments from Centre users and ran a drawing workshop with a youth group. We’ve taken our anarchaeology approach of using informal and creative approaches to excavate layers of meaning and understanding. I’ve enjoyed all the people we met who have been so generous, and as I go through the hours of recorded audio  two of my favourite quotes so far have been from the Meriden Comunity Centre Community Bar on the Meriden estate in north Watford, and the list of what young people saw around their Neighbourhood in the Chells area of Stevenage.

In the Meriden  community bar we asked: How long have you been here?

1962 I moved onto this estate.
I was going to say half past seven.
I’ve been a member of this club for years since it first opened.
I’ve been here so long I’ve worn a hole in the carpet.
You certainly don’t get any trouble in here fighting or all that, its just all mates really I suppose
Like a big extended family
We come down here to insult each other
Don’t know what we’d do without it, we’d sit indoors and watch telly.
We’re all living round here so we don’t need to drive.
The atmosphere, you know, you come in and you know you’re not going to get into any trouble.

And in Chells Manor Community Center we went for a walk with the youth group and after making a large drawing we asked: What did you see and draw?

I saw a fox
I saw the pub, shops, chip shop
I saw, a cat , a man smoking
I saw a tree and a road and an aeroplane
I saw a red flower, a broken glass
I saw myself
I saw a load of people at the youth club
I saw my house
apparently we saw a train going up a tree
I never saw two men shooting each other
I saw darren
I saw houses, dogs,
I saw the green, football, cricket, cycling down fairlands
nothing else

The book will be published in December.

City as Material

September 7, 2009 by · 7 Comments 

City As Material, 1st Walk

Exploring GF Watts Commemoration of Heroic Sacrifice, Postman's Park London

This week we begin teaching a course on the city as material for artistic practice with students from Vassar College‘s International Program in London. We’ve planned it as a co-creative course, intending to act as facilitators and guides to the students in devising and conducting their own investigations of the city and creating their own interventions. The students will be creating a blog to document their activities, as well as publishing eBooks about their individual projects.

The course is fortnightly (from early September to the beginning of December 2009), based in our studio in Clerkenwell, from where we’ll engage in walks, watching, making, drawing, discussing and eating.

From our course introduction (eBook A4 | US Letter PDF 240Kb),

The focus for this class will be in considering the role of the city as material for artistic experimentation and creation. Only inadequately understood as “public art,” urban interventions produce public space where it does not exist, foster new modes of urban citizenship and participation, render legible the force of political and financial power shaping the global city, expose the mutability of “public” and “private” entailed by new media transformations of social space, create alliances between varied urban stakeholders, challenge the zero-tolerance policies of the increasingly securitized city, and broaden the repertoire of political resistance and direct action. In addition to contemporary practice the course will consider the rich histories of urban intervention by artists in London and elsewhere.

Sutton Feast Week: exhibition & events

June 30, 2009 by · Comments Off on Sutton Feast Week: exhibition & events 

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We are preparing to head off this week to Sutton-in-the-Isle to exhibit our work on Sutton Grapevine at the annual Sutton Feast. There will be a display in St Andrews Church from Wednesday to Sunday and over Friday and Saturday we will be joining various Feast Events to show people the Grapevine and hopefully inspire them to add their own stories. Having spent a week in Sutton in June we have gathered a huge range of stories and audio which are now being edited and podcast on the Grapevine. We’ve gathered stories through interviews and chance encounters, meetings, attending clubs and groups, visiting events, working with the youth group, organising a BBQ, exploring the local area by bike, foot and car, through an exhibit in the Babylon Gallery Ely and through the website.

This week we will be at
Wed 1st – Fri 3rd July, 7pm – 11pm St Andrews Church (during Beer Festival)
Fri 3rd July, 2pm – 5pm St Andrews Church (free)
Sat 4th July, 10am – 12pm Tithe Sale, St Andrews Church (free)
Sat 4th July, 12pm – 3pm FOSS Annual Summer Fete, Sutton Primary School (free)
Sun 5th July, from 7.15pm St Andrews Church (during Last Night of the Proms)

Come and join us for a day in the Fens.

Sandwell Sense of Place

May 29, 2009 by · Comments Off on Sandwell Sense of Place 

Proboscis has recently been invited to join a tender bid to Urban Living and Birmingham City Council for the Sandwell Sense of Place project. The other partners are Rob Annable and Mike Menzies of axis design architects (who are leading the bid); Michael Kohn and Chris of YouCanPlan and Nick Booth of Podnosh. The sense of place project aims to devise a toolkit and archive using a variety of media and techniques for local residents to articulate their sense of place in two areas of Sandwell near Birmingham in the ‘Western Growth Corridor‘. This sense of place and its archive will form a key input into the regeneration masterplanning process.

As part of our interview we created a special Diffusion eBook outlining the team’s approach and illustrating some of our previous work.

Sutton Grapevine

November 3, 2008 by · 3 Comments 

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Sutton Grapevine explores issues of place and identity in and around the village of Sutton-in-the-Isle, Cambridgeshire, focusing on the unique context of Sutton, its location in the Fens, the rapid development of the village, it’s rich history and the complex mix of it’s multiple communities past, present and future.

It draws inspiration from storytelling’s historical context: the telling and retelling of folktales as they travel between villages or continents, the sociable storytelling in the pub or around the living room fireside, the broadcasting of stories via radio and books. The project collects and shares stories with the local community through a series of events, online media and sociable listening experiences.

Sutton Grapevine proposes a kind of template for using hybrid online and offline experiences in rural communities where there is a lack of “permanently available shared cultural spaces”. Spanning the technological and tangible  we aim to bridge virtual and physical spaces in compelling and innovative ways.
http://suttongrapevine.org
Follow suttongrapevine on Twitter

Team: Alice Angus, Dia Batal, Giles Lane, Karen Martin & Orlagh Woods.

Commissioned by ADeC.
Funded by Arts Council England East.

Perception Peterborough

November 3, 2008 by · 3 Comments 


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Peterborough is currently one of the UKs four Environmental Cities and it aims to become the Environmental Capital.

Perception Peterborough is a dynamic and creative visioning project which brought together key local representatives with creative thinkers to develop innovative approaches to the challenges and opportunities facing Peterborough over the next 15-20 years. Proboscis was commissioned to develop and lead a series of creative workshops alongside consultants Haring Woods Associates.

As part of our research for the project, we conducted an anarchaeology of the city and its people and created a series of Impressions to inspire different perspectives on the key themes for workshop participants and project stakeholders.

Read more about the Workshops

Read more about the Impressions

Team: Alice Angus, Niharika Hariharan, Matt Huynh, Giles Lane, Karen Martin, Sarah Thelwall, Carmen Vela Maldonado & Orlagh Woods.

Commissioned by Peterborough City Council; Arts Council England, East; Opportunity Peterborough, East of England Development Agency, MLA, Natural England, Sport England and English Heritage.

Proboscis would like to thank the many people we encountered in our research as well as those we spoke to for longer and in particular the following: Renny Antonelli, Simon Belham, Nuno Costa, Jimmy D, Vladimir Demcak, Patricia Higham, Judith Jacobs, Keely Mills, Nathan Murdoch, Glen Nelson, New Link Translators, Luke Payn, Amanda Preston, Proteus Canoe Club, Michael Riccardi, Monika Romankiewicz, Liliana Ronseca, Phil Sheppard, Jurga Tonkuniene.

Perception Peterborough – Impressions

September 15, 2008 by · Comments Off on Perception Peterborough – Impressions 

As part of our research for the project, we conducted an anarchaeology of the city and its people and created a series of Impressions to inspire different perspectives on the key themes for workshop participants and project stakeholders.

The Impressions, initially created as a means of conveying a local sense of place to national and international participants, were inspired by the series of ‘Wanderings’ that Proboscis undertook with local people in Peterborough as a means of conveying a local sense of place.

We were inspired by the people of Peterborough and the seeds of the future they showed us that Peterborough already has; the diversity, talent, river, and green spaces, fens and waterways, the history and folklore and the great generous friendliness of people who never turned us away. Our Impressions therefore were about the seeds of Peterborough; visible and invisible, from past and future, for hopes
and concerns. They are about what could be seeded, nurtured and grown and what seeds exist here already to help everyone do that.

The wanderings involved conversations and encounters with over 20 local people of different ages and backgrounds. Proboscis journeyed through townships, villages and city by taxi, train, bus, bike, kayak and on foot to investigate and explore the city and its surrounding landscapes. We gained a richer understanding, through local and grassroots perspectives, of people’s perspectives of what it is like to live in Peterborough and their aspirations for the future. The resulting series of Impressions include short films, audio collage, eBooks, StoryCubes and drawings that can be shared physically and digitally and combined with existing policy material to add new perspective to the visioning process.

Monsters and Mermaids

September 1, 2008 by · Comments Off on Monsters and Mermaids 

Created by Alice Angus

Download A4 PDF 1Mb

Perception Peterborough – Voices

September 1, 2008 by · Comments Off on Perception Peterborough – Voices 

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Voices records hopes, aspirations and feelings about the city of local people we encountered during our anarchaeological research for Perception Peterborough. One of a series of 8 “Impressions” of the city of Peterborough in England. Part of the Perception Peterborough project which involves artists and consultants in working with local, national and international people to develop a compelling and exciting vision for the future of the city.

projects

May 9, 2008 by · 1 Comment 

Indigenous Public Authoring
A collaboration with Professor James Leach (UWA/CNRS) working with local people in Reite village, Rai Coast Papua New Guinea to co-design new shareable ways to record and share their local environmental and cultural knowledge.
Begun 2012 | Ongoing

Hidden Families
A collaboration with ISG at Royal Holloway University of London, Freya Stang, NEPACS and Action for Prisoners Families to document and share the experiences of families visiting relatives in prison.
Begun 2012 | Completed 2013

Visualise Lifestreams
An Art + Industry commission as part of Anglia Ruskin University’s Visualise programme to work with Philips Research UK exploring new ways to engage people with biosensor data to promote wellbeing and healthy life choices.
Begun & Completed 2012

Pallion Ideas Exchange
A collaborative community co-design project in partnership with the Information Security Group at Royal Holloway University of London and Pallion Action Group in Sunderland to assist in creating a grassroots knowledge network.
Begun & Completed 2012

StoryWeir
A commission to create a site-specific artwork on Hive Beach, Dorset (on the “Jurassic Coast”) as part of the Cultural Olympiad connecting human time with geological time.
Begun 2011 | Completed 2012

Fabric Design
Experiments with drawing and digital printing of fabrics.
Begun 2010 | Ongoing

Public Goods Lab
Our in-house R&D creative technology initiative.
Begun 2011 | Ongoing

Public Goods
Our new 5 year programme of projects focusing on making and sharing tangible representations of the intangible things we value most about the places and communities we belong to, such as stories, skills, games, songs, techniques, memories, local lore and experiential knowledge of local environment and ecology.
Begun 2011 | Ongoing

Agencies of Engagement
A collaborative research project with CARET & Crucible at the University of Cambridge investigating groupwork and collaborative practices in the university community to support software development of a collaboration platform.
Begun & Completed 2011

City As Material
A series of one day events in London combining urban exploration and collaborative publishing with bookleteer. 5 collaborative eBooks published and 4 eBooks commissioned from invited guests : Tim Wright, Ben Eastop, Simon Pope & Alexandra Deschamps-Sonsino
View the eBooks here
Begun & Completed 2010

Safe Planet
A commission to co-design and develop the artistic identity for a major global awareness campaign about Persistent Organic Pollutants for the United Nations Environment Programme.
Begun & Completed 2010

Graffito
Proboscis is a creative partner in the Graffito project, supported by the Horizons Digital Economy Research Institute, developing a collaborative drawing platform for smartphones and tablets.
Begun & Completed 2010

As It Comes
A commission from the Lancaster Chamber of Commerce to create a series of artistic works by Alice Angus about the independent traders of Lancaster and the culture of local trade.
Begun & Completed 2010

Birmingham Total Place
A commission for the Birmingham Total Place project to document the experiences of families receiving “Early Intervention” from social services and to communicate this in a novel way to policymakers and senior management.
Begun & Completed 2010

bookleteer
Our new free web service for creating Diffusion eBooks and StoryCubes.
Launched 2009 | Ongoing

With Our Ears to the Ground
A commission from Green Heart Partnership to engage with 4 different geographic communities in Hertfordshire and explore people’s ideas about community.
Begun 2009 | Completed 2010

DodoLab
Proboscis is continuing our collaboration with DodoLab (a project supported by University of Waterloo and the Musagetes Foundation) first initiated at the 5th World Environmental Education Congress in Montreal, Canada May 10th-14th 2009.
Begun 2009 | Ongoing

Sensory Threads
Proboscis is developing a new mobile participatory sensing project with researchers from the Centre for Digital Music at Queen Mary University of London; Pervasive Computing Lab at Birkbeck College, Mixed Reality Lab at University of Nottingham; and the School of Management at University of Southampton.
Begun 2008 | Ongoing

Sutton Grapevine
A commission by ADeC (Arts Development East Cambridgeshire) to create a space where local residents of Sutton-in-the-isle near Ely, new and longstanding, can have the room to explore place and identity through creative activity.
Begun 2008 | Completed 2009

Being In Common
Being in Common invites people to expand and alter their understanding of ‘common space’ and is inspired by the close connection between the histories of enclosure, surveying and gunpowder that coincide in Gunpowder Park. A commission by Haring Woods Associates / Landscape+Arts Network Services at Gunpowder Park as part of the Art of Common Space programme.
Begun 2008 | Completed 2009

Perception Peterborough
Proboscis was commissioned (with strategic consultants Haring Woods Associates) to develop the creative vision for the growth for the City of Peterborough, an ambitious £1bn development plan over the next 15-20 years. Through an anarchaeological investigation of the city, its environment and inhabitants, Proboscis devised and facilitated a series of workshops and distributable works that contributed to a major regeneration strategy.
Begun & Completed 2008

Lattice::Sydney
Proboscis was invited by the British Council to design a framework for a series of collaborations and residencies with organisations in East Asia, as part of their Creative Cities programme. Lattice is a framework for Proboscis to work collaboratively with different partners in the region to engage local communities in developing their own tools and techniques for public authoring, anarchaeology and cultures of listening. The initial project Lattice:Sydney is hosted by ICE (Information & Cultural Exchange) in Western Sydney during 2008.
Begun 2007 | Completed 2008

Experiencing Democracy
A week long Social Tapestries workshop with Year 4 students at the Jenny Hammond Primary School in Waltham Forest investigating children’s experiences of democracy and democratic behaviour. Developed and delivered with Loren Chasse.
Download the learning diary eBook (A4); final Group eBook (A4) and project report (A4)
Begun 2007 | Completed 2007

Snout
Snout was a Social Tapestries collaboration between inIVA, Proboscis and researchers from Birkbeck College exploring relationships between the body, community and the environment. It built on our previous collaboration on Feral Robots to investigate how data can be collected from environmental sensors as part of popular social and cultural activities. Two carnival costumes instrumented with environmental sensors were created and a mock carnival held in Shoreditch, east London in April 2007.
Begun 2006 | Completed 2007

Conversations and Connections
Proboscis collaborated on an 18 month Social Tapestries project with community development consultancy, Local Level and Havelock Independent Residents Organisation to explore how public authoring concepts and tools could be used by residents of a low income social housing neighbourhood (in Suthall, West London) to map and share local knowledge leading to an improvement in services from the local authority and housing agency. The project was funded through an Innovations grant from the Democratic Engagement branch of the Electoral Policy Division of the Ministry of Justice.
Download the Evaluation Report
Begun 2005 | Completed 2007

Everyday Archaeology
A week long Social Tapestries workshop with Year 4 students at the Jenny Hammond Primary School in Waltham Forest exploring the local environment and the children’s relationship to it. Developed and delivered with Loren Chasse.
Download the Activity & Impact Report
Begun 2006 | Completed 2006

Robotic Feral Public Authoring
A Social Tapestries collaboration with Birkbeck College and Natalie Jeremijenko to adapt toy robots with GPS positioning, environmental sensors and wireless data upload to Urban Tapestries. The prototypes were built for and tested in London Fields with the help of local people, and presented publicly at the Science Museum London.
Download the Cultural Snapshot
Begun 2005 | Completed 2006

Topographies and Tales
Topographies & Tales is about the relationship between people, language, identity and place, revealing small local stories against the larger picture of how our concept of space and environment is shaped by “belonging” and “nationhood”, and how boundaries, barriers and borders come to be formed. Proboscis collaborated with and supported residencies in the UK for two artists to create new works with us – Joyce Majiski (Canada) & Loren Chasse (USA).
Begun 2004 | Completed 2007

Social Tapestries
Social Tapestries was a research programme developing experimental uses of public authoring to demonstrate the social and cultural benefits of local knowledge sharing enabled by new mobile technologies. These playful and challenging experiments built upon the Urban Tapestries framework and software platform developed by Proboscis and its partners. Through collaborations and partnerships with other civil society organisations we addressed education, social housing, community arts and local government. Projects include: Experiencing Democracy, SnoutConversations and ConnectionsEveryday ArchaeologySt Marks and Robotic Feral Public Authoring.
Begun 2004 | Completed 2008

Navigating History
A collaboration with curator Deborah Smith commissioning 11 artists’ projects in local libraries and local history collections in the South East region of England. This unique project built on the Topologies research and created dynamic new relationships between local people, the artworks and the collections.
Begun 2003 | Completed 2005

Urban Tapestries
Proboscis created and developed this groundbreaking project exploring mobile technologies, mapping and public authoring  in partnership with the London School of Economics, Hewlett Packard Research Labs and Orange with Ordnance Survey and France Telecom R&D. The initial prototype (for PDA and WiFi) had a public trial in London in December 2003, the second prototype (for Symbian mbile phone and GPRS) was given a field trial in June 2004.
Download the Report: Public Authoring, Space & Mobility
Begun 2002 | Completed 2004

StoryCubes
StoryCubes are a tactile thinking and storytelling tool for exploring relationships and narratives. Each face of the cube can illustrate or describe an idea, a thing or an action, placed together it is possible to build up multiple narratives or explore the relationships between them in a novel three-dimensional way. StoryCubes are part of the Diffusion Shareables concept and can be created using the Diffusion Generator, as well as purchased as packs for creative projects, brainstorming and workshops. Proboscis also offers a personalised StoryCube printing service.
Begun 2002 | Ongoing

Landscape and Identity; Language and Territory
Liquid Geography questioned and explored contemporary perceptions of geography, territory and landscape, at a point in time when understandings of place and space are being redefined. The initial strand of this research was Landscape & Identity; Language & Territory, a collaboration between Proboscis, MEDIA@LSE and inIVA. Two Creative Labs will be held on March 22nd and June 14th 2002 exploring how new technologies can be used in innovative ways to transform our knowledge of other societies and cultures and act as enabling tools providing a catalyst for the development of new ideas. A series of DIFFUSION eBooks were commissioned as pilots for future experiments in knowledge creation and dissemination.
Begun 2001 | Completed 2002

Sonic Geographies
Sonic Geographies takes sound as the entry point for excavating and mapping urban experience and invisible infrastructures of the city. A series of experiments and sketches were developed that operated as maps and journeys but also as highly personal renderings of sonic experience – sounds of the personal world in conversation with sounds of the city.
Begun 2002 | Completed 2003

Private Reveries, Public Spaces
Proboscis commissioned 14 proposals from leading artists and designers addressing the theme of converging media technologies (internet, radio, interactive television, wireless telecommunications etc) and their social and cultural impact on the shifting relationship between private and public spaces. Three of the proposals were selected by a panel of judges to be developed into ‘conceptual prototypes’ for presentation to the public, peers, academia and industry as online demonstrations and at an event at the London School of Economics on June 25th 2002.
Begun 2001 | Completed 2002

Peer2Peer
Peer2Peer was an informal network of people interested in developing collaborations and practical solutions for potential partnerships across the arts, industry and academia. The Network consists of individual artists and designers and people from academia, industry, public funding agencies, private foundations and government. Proboscis initiated the network and hosted a number of meetings and events in partnership with the LSE, RCA, Iniva and others.
Begun 2001 | Completed 2003

SoMa – Social Matrices
In 1999/2000 Proboscis began to re-orient itself as a creative studio with a strong emphasis on research. Over the next 18 months we developed close partnerships with Professor Roger Silverstone at the London School of Economics and the School of Communications at the Royal College of Art. Our collaborative research programme, SoMa was launched in April 2001 as a ‘think tank for culture’ – a think, make and do environment for transdisciplinary collaborations.
Begun 2001 | Ongoing

Mapping Perception
A collaboration between Giles Lane, curator and producer, Andrew Kötting, the acclaimed director of This Filthy Earth,Gallivant and Smart Alek, and Mark Lythgoe, neurophysiologist at the Institute of Child Health, London.
The project looked at the perceptions of impaired brain function to further understand the mind and body interaction and our relationship with its abnormality. It made visible connections between scientific and artistic explorations of the human condition, probing the thin membrane between the able and the disabled.
Begun 1998 | Completed 2002.

Diffusion
Diffusion is a downloadable hybrid digital/material book format, developed by Proboscis in 1999/2000. Since the publication of the first series of Diffusion eBooks, Performance Notations, in September 2000, Proboscis has continued to use the format for commissioning new creative publications, as well as adapting and developing the format for uses in other fields and projects. The design schematics were first published in 2002, and since 2003 Proboscis has been developing the Diffusion Generator – an online application allowing people without design skills to publish Diffusion eBooks of their own.
Begun 1999 | Ongoing

Topologies
Topologies was a research and feasibility study to investigate creating an initiative which could challenge existing definitions of public art. By commissioning and disseminating public artworks through the UK Public Library system, and using visual, aural and tactile media to investigate and represent abstract spaces and concepts, the works would form part of a wider attempt to broaden the audience for contemporary conceptual artwork. Topologies aimed to change both the context and the way in which people encounter art, aiming to introduce concepts of process-based art practices (as distinct from object-based works) to diverse and new audiences, and move the experience of encountering public (or conceptual) art away from a ‘viewer’ experience to that of a user.
The Research Report is available to download as a PDF file here.
Begun 1999 | Completed 2000

COIL journal of the moving image
Proboscis’ founding project, COIL was a 10 issue experimental publication that explored the practice of, and commissioned, artists film, moving image and new media works between 1995 and 2000. Over 140 artists, writers and others were published in the journal.
Begun 1994 | Completed 2000

Anarchaeology at Render

April 1, 2008 by · 1 Comment 

Collecting, Curating and Communicating Culture

Proboscis co-designed (with Andrew Hunter of Render) a studio/seminar course introducing 3rd & 4th year undergraduate and post-graduate students to contemporary approaches to collecting and curating through learning by doing. Students were introduced to techniques (anarchaeology, public authoring) and tools (Diffusion eBooks, StoryCubes, podcasting) used and developed by Proboscis. The goal of the course was to work both individually and collectively in excavating narratives of people, places, events and artefacts and creating new artefacts (using new and old media tools).

Render continued its collaboration with Proboscis on the Anarchaeology programme in May-July 2008, running a lab out of the Artery Gallery in downtown Kitchener. As part of this Render hosted a workshop with Collision, a group of students from Preston Highschool who have formed an independent collective to initiate and create performative art projects. Collision is mentored by artist and teacher Kyle Brown. For the May 17 workshop, Collision became selected buildings in downtown Kitchener and then ventured out into the street to engage the public.


Collision Workshop Photos on Flickr

Anarchaeology Course website

Team: Alice Angus, Giles Lane & Orlagh Woods
Partner: Render at University of Waterloo (Andrew Hunter, Barbara Hobot & Amos Latteier)

Funded by the J.W. Graham Trust