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A new short film about our 2014 Cambridge University commission, 'Tomorrow, Today' edited by Neil Lenthall

Nice Wee Film

We spent a day a while ago with our new-to-us editor Neil Lenthall making this short from previously unseen footage of our 2014 public art commission at North West Cambridge (now christened 'Eddington', and inhabited by actual people and buildings too).

Enjoy and share!

Karen & Nina at NW Cambridge, Nov. 2015

Prospect-a-way

We're quietly getting on with a new project called Prospection, which you can see more about here. It's a 25 year survey of a new area of Cambridge, under development by the University and where our artists residency a few years back took place (and where we built our mudopolis 'Tomorrow, Today').

Working with a mixed team of sociologists, archaeologists and artists we're visiting each year and surveying anything about the place and its inhabitants that takes our fancy. We then put the stuff in a box in the county archives for posterity.Simple!

This week we work once more with the wonderful editor Alice Powell on a short film drawn from our two days filming at the site in November 2015. Expect much high-vis, wind, rain, tea and hard hats....

Walk with us ... this weekend

This Saturday July 12th you can walk & talk with us about our new project WHAT WILL THE HARVEST BE? We will be leading a walk from Abbey Gardens around some of Newham’s other green spaces:

3.00 pm Abbey Gardens (Bakers Row)
3.15 pm West Ham Park
4.15 pm St Mary’s Allotments
5.00 pm The Greenway
5.30 pm West Ham Allotments
6.00 pm Abbey Gardens - Picnic

Come & join us for the walk to hear more about our proposed projects for Abbey Gardens and meet some Newham residents with green fingers. Following the walk there will be an informal gathering for a picnic with the Friends of Abbey Gardens, which you are also very welcome to join. Feel free to bring along some food (especially home-grown!) Elderflower drinks will be available made with the flowers I gathered on the site.

To book a place on the walk please email us.

Click here for more information on the project.

Abbey Gardens is located at the end of Bakers Row, Stratford, East London E15 3NF

Thanks to Andreas for these photos
which I've joined together ...

Summer Seed Shape

We have recently been commissioned by Newham Council to work with the Friends of Abbey Gardens to re-vision the site opposite their houses on Bakers Row in Stratford. The scheme will take several years to complete and we are currently making proposals for a series of events and projects during this time.

Our current thinking is around the cosmopolitan social and commercial hub that medieval abbeys - such as that which once occupied the site - would have been. We plan to relate historic influences (including the more recent history of the site) to East London today and the needs of both the local and commuter communities. We are committed to using the site to produce food or other distributable products, and to raising community engagement in this endeavour via a long term scheme of events. These objectives will be also be embedded into the permanent design scheme by working with the Council's landscape architect on the planting and layout of the garden.

The Council are currently rolling out an interim scheme of sowing a wildflower seed mix onto imported topsoil, bringing colour and wildlife to the area over summer 2008.
To retain a small area of 'original' soil for observation, we have been constructing an area which mirrors the shape of the nearby archaelogical remains on the site. The soil in this section will be left uncultivated, and its natural seedbank allowed to germinate and grow. After three days of hard digging we finally achieved the modest aim of protecting the shape from the seeds about to go down!

You can see more photos of the area and a large version of this one on our new Flickr Group for Abbey Gardens/Bakers Row.

The final countdown

As Nina finishes her packing before we join 1578 for our new film shoot, I thought I'd share my latest craft outbreak - a range of bespoke Tudor handbags to conceal our stuff. The one on the far right is - sad I know - exactly tailored to hide a one litre plastic water bottle.
I think I might have become a fully paid-up re-enactor....

Donald Campbell mascot in progress

It's a Lake District Knockout

Whilst Nina heads for the Edinburgh International Film Festival for our Bata-ville premiere, the multi-project juggling continues, with emails from Tudors all day for the Sometime Later project, a 1569 ruff order for two (Nina and I's necks are the same size - bizarre?) and a few hours this afternoon with a soft pencil trying to nail some caricatures for our 'It's a Lake District Knockout' event on Sept. 18th.....We're having 4 big mascot heads of local luminaries made so that each competing team has one to support them, and these will remain with Coniston village for them to use in any way they like after our event. So far we're going for Ruskin, Wainright, Beatrix Potter and Donald Campbell....Echoes of our earlier Grizedale pieces that used local celebrities here!
To your right you see my best effort so far - the water speed nut Donald Campbell who until recently remained at the bottom of Lake Coniston after his untimely death during his last record-breaking attempt. He'll be the mascot for the Coniston Sailing Club team - I had to ring the Ruskin Museum today to ask what colour his helmet was.
In real life Campbell had his own 'lucky' mascot called Mr Woppitt, a teddy who in fact was the sole survivor of a number of family 'crashes' until someone realised he was in fact a herald of doom.