We are more than halfway through the Talking City Project now, and it has been going down a storm.Culturing Stuff Oatcake demo
The interviews have gone really well - we have had oatcake demonstrations, live draws and a couple of music gigs. Michael Colley playing the Hang
There have also been two New Generation Space events, the first where I gave a talk about my practice and the second a tour of stoke and revisioning/rebuilding activity for artists.Saturday 16th October - just before I gave a talk about my practice
We walked the streets - looking differently at the familiar - using binoculars and peeping through letter boxes for new ways of seeing the cityWe then returned to SHOP and everyone shared their thoughts before getting started on the rebuild program.
Some of the ideas which the artists came up with included wi-fi hubs at spots around the town. A botanical garden walkway from the train station. A green bridge bringing visitors from the train station through the civic centre and into a fantastic green square with a fountain. The town became pedestrianised and cycle friendly - and a star shaped arts hub was built. Also GR codes were mentioned as something that could happen quickly and cheaply - which could act as a permanent tour through Stoke town history. I will write up the artist's findings to send through to URBED the Urban Design company currently working on the Masterplans for Stoke Town.
Friday night also saw the second episode of Talking City Live to broadcast from SHOP. There were an exciting array of guests including Kevin bell: Stoke Town regeneration Manager. ASK ANNA asked Kevin all about his role in the town and the sorts of activities he has seen happening.
Next up were David and Andrew, Directors of AirSpace Gallery. ASK ANNA asked them how they got started, what impact their activity might have had on the regeneration of Stoke, and finally how they plan to survive in light of the difficulties facing the arts.
The Behjat Omer Abdulla spoke of why, as a recent graduate, he had stayed in Stoke. Behjat surprised the regeneration agony aunt by asking her to draw the winner of his 'Familiar Face' competition live on air - which was very exciting.
and then finally Kate Barfield and Greg Stephens (of the Boat Band) came along to talk about some of the site specific theatre projects they have been working on for the past few decades - they then closed the show with a lovely tune.