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How do people define and form relationships with their environment?
What are our expectations and geographic knowledges, our perceptions and myths of place?
Topographies & Tales is part of Proboscis' Liquid Geography research theme and is concerned with relationships between people, language, identity and place.

The last 100 years have seen huge changes in the way we think of the spaces between "the city", "nature", "the countryside" and "the suburbs" and how boundaries, barriers and borders come to be formed. This project is a series of investigations into these issues of geography; using collaborations and creative activities as a focal point for uncovering experience and knowledge and playfully exploring languages, communities, landscapes and boundaries.

The ideas being explored by Topographies & Tales grow from Proboscis' Landscape & Identity; Language & Territory project and revolve around four loose areas:

  • storytelling and memory
  • place and identity
  • landscape and language
  • belonging and nationhood

Collaborations have been developed to bring people together from different backgrounds to address these areas through a range of skills and points of reference.

Outcomes and Sites
Topographies & Tales will result in a short film, a set of StoryCubes, series of Diffusion eBooks, a Creative Lab as well as a workshop and events in Dawson City, Canada.

The project research has taken place as part of collaborative ventures in Scotland with Glenmore Outdoor Education Centre; in London in the Proboscis Studio; with the Canadian High Comission in London and in Dawson City, Canada with the Klondike International Arts Centre.
>Project Postcard [PDF 78Kb]

Joyce Majiski (2004/05)

Glenmore Lodge, Aviemore, Scotland and Klondike International Arts Centre, Dawson City, Canada.
Artist and wilderness guide, Joyce Majiski, is collaborating with Proboscis during 2004/5 on a collaborative film using sound, drawing, animation and storytelling; as welll as a new Diffusion eBook, series of StoryCubes and workshops.

She was resident in the Proboscis studio in London followed by residencies with Alice Angus at Glenmore Lodge Outdoor Education Centre, Aviemore, Scotland (March/April/May 2004) and at the Klondike International Arts Centre, Dawson City, Canada.

Joyce and Alice began working together as part of Alice's Landscapes in Dialogue project in 2003 and the Artist in the Parks project organised by Joyce in Ivvavik wilderness reserve in Canada's Northwestern Arctic. Their work for Topographies & Tales has foucsed on local and personal stories, memories and myths against the larger picture of how our concept of space and environment is shaped by ideas of "belonging" and "nationhood".

The first stage of this project was for Joyce to spend time in London at the Proboscis studio where she brought her unique naturalist's eye and wilderness guiding experience to bear on the experience of navigating central London. The second phase took Joyce and Alice to Glenmore Lodge Outdoor Education Centre in Scotland. The third phase is a residency in the Yukon, Canada hosted by Klondike International Arts Centre in Dawson City.

Glenmore Lodge is in the process of incorporating creative environmental education into its traditional and well respected programme of outdoor and mountaineer training. The people working there on outdoor skills, mountaineering, white water sports and survival specialists, bring a very unusual set of skills and knowledge to an artistic venture and extended the perspective of the project. Glenmore is also uniquely placed, socially and physically among various stakeholders and people with an interest in the land, from those who work on the land to local and national government. Therefore this collaboration, a first for both Proboscis and Glenmore, allowed the artists to see the social and physical geography of the Cairngorms through the the multiple layers of usage of the area. Much of the research in Glenmore looked at the physical skills of navigation and wayfinding as a way to explore peoples connnection to place and the more metaphorical notions of navigation through our own history, our ideas of home, nation and the language we use to define these concepts.

Joyce and Alice are continuing to develop this work at Klondike International Arts Centre, Dawson City, Yukon, Canada (January/February 2005). Dawson City, a goldrush town once known as 'Paris of the North', with its clapboard main street of ornate wooden facades is the perfect place for them to look at how expectations of other places are formed and to uncover the relationships between the lived experience of a place and how we might imagine it.


Loren Chasse (2005/06)
Sound artist and educator Loren Chasse will be collaborating with Proboscis to create new sound works in London during 2005/6.

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