Friday, February 22, 2008

The Broad St. Photo and Stats. in Window 204, Gloucester Rd. Bristol.

The Gloucester Rd. Photo and Stats. in AirSpace Gallery, Stoke-on-Trent.

The Consultation Process.

Broad St. Stoke-on-Trent

Gloucester Rd. Bristol

The Gloucester Rd. photograph and statistics are now on show at AirSpace Gallery, No. 4 Broad St. Stoke-on-Trent and the Broad St. photograph is now on show at No. 204 Gloucester Rd. Bristol. Both works will be up for two weeks.

The mini-project 'There Is Beauty In The City' commences tomorrow...more details and images to follow.

Thursday, February 14, 2008

These posters showing some of the results of the public consultation process, as well as the photographic documentation carried out on Broad St. Stoke-on-Trent go on display in the window of 204 Gloucester Rd. Bristol on Saturday, 16th Feb. from 12pm. The other half of the project - the public consultation process on Gloucester Rd. will take place on Gloucester Rd. Bristol from 3pm on Saturday, and the results of that process will go on display at AirSpace Gallery, No.4 Broad St. Stoke-on-Trent from Wednesday, 20th Feb.

Saturday, February 9, 2008

Cup Sculpture

Cup Sculpture can be found on Clough St. Hanley, Stoke-on-Trent.
The piece has been in situ for over a year now, longer than many public, artistic interventions being commissioned. The piece can be seen as a success in as far as the success of a work of art can be measured without an intensive period of evaluation, research and public consultation.
Guidelines for Public Art can be found at
taken from those guidelines:
"The work or contribution is likely to be commissioned and created specifically for the development. In many cases it will be developed in collaboration with the architect or designer and in consultation with the users of the site.
'Public Art' refers to any contribution by artists in a publicly accessible location.
Public 'ownership' of the resultant art is important for its long-term acceptance and life. In some projects community involvement in the design and realisation of the artwork (under the direction of an artist skilled at working with groups of people) may assist in the community taking ownership of the artwork and thereby reducing the risk of vandalism or wanton damage ."
The cup sculpture can be regarded as a successful piece of public art, as it adheres to many of the guidelines set out by policy makers. In particular: the work has been created specifically for the site, and is relevant to the site and its users, as the piece is located on a market site where market stall holders and customers regularly drink from polystyrene cups. The project has evolved over a period of more than a year; The interesting point here is that the sculpture works equally well at this time of year (winter) as it does in summer, when the branches (or structure of the sculpture) grows leaves. For this reason it is worth visiting the piece periodically over the year to watch its transformation.
It is unclear whether this is an intervention by one artist or whether this is, in fact, a collaboration between the artist and the public, but the longevity of the project and its ability to adapt to its surroundings shows it to be a success.
An evaluation toolkit for Public Art has been set up by IXIA - more details

Friday, February 8, 2008

Confirmation of the March and May Projects

Confirmation has today been received concerning the year of finding spaces in the city for art's projects for march and may.
The First is the 'Play' exhibition at AirSpace Gallery, Stoke-on-Trent. Which will be a five person show (Anna Francis, Katie Shipley, Karen Boulton, Sam Knight and David Bethell). Which opens on March 21st and runs til all fools day. More details to follow.
The second great piece of news is that a residency has been secured for May, at The Institute for the Art and Practice of Dissent at Home. This is an exciting chance to carry out a research project and spend time in the institute, based in Liverpool, where a certain level of resisitance to Liverpool's capital of culture status is expected. Part of the Institute's manifesto is as follows
"We have decided to organize a programme of events in our council house for the duration of Liverpool 08. We have decided to voice our discontent. We have decided to ask questions around art and culture, money and capitalism, private and public, familial and civic life. We have decided to disobey."
The residency will be an opportunity to spend time within the capital of culture, within an art space which is operating outside of the capital of culture. It is a chance to carry out an investigation into how creative people in the city are reacting to the status, as well as gather first hand experiences from the cities users. More later...

Tuesday, February 5, 2008


Number 4, Broad Street, Stoke-on-Trent,
and Number 204, Gloucester Road, Bristol.

What has been going on in the windows of Number 204, Gloucester Road, Bristol and Number 4, Broad Street, Stoke-on-Trent over the last year? And how do they relate to each other?

Anna Francis’ current practice is involved in examining the impact of art and cultural activity on our changing cities and for this has embarked upon an investigation into the two window spaces, in order to try and uncover just what sort of an impact the current use of the buildings has had on their immediate environs.
This investigation has involved a number of activities;
- a photographic exploration into the context of the buildings in their surroundings;
- an excavation of the two sights, in order to uncover the remnants left by the previous artist/occupants of the window spaces,
- a public consultation process, which aims to look for the impact and recognition of the people using the streets where the spaces are situated.
This consultation process aims to find out what the public think about artists bringing the disused buildings in our cities back into use; and more specifically what impact the projects at No. 204 and No. 4 are having on the public.

Art and cultural activity are now being accepted as important factors in the regeneration of our cities; however, there is a sense that some governing bodies are viewing such activities as a cure-all, while others are yet to fully take on board the benefits of building art into their plans in a meaningful way. The investigations in Stoke-on-Trent and Bristol will show up the differences and similarities between the two places, and the reactions which the public are having to the artistic activities being undertaken there. This window twinning event marks the start of an ongoing project for Francis, examining the inherent problems of finding adequate and appropriate research methodologies for measuring the impact and success of public art activities (in their broadest sense.)

The findings from No. 204 will be displayed in the window of No. 4, and vice-versa. The No. 204, Bristol project will be installed on Saturday, 16th February, and the No. 4 Stoke-on-Trent project will be installed on Wednesday, 20th February, 2008.

The Year of Investigating Spaces in the City for Art

2008 will be the year to investigate spaces in the city for art. As part of the investigation into the impact that art and cultural activity can have on our changing cities, I aim to undertake at least 12 (approx. one a month) projects in spaces around our cities.
The first two are already underway...part one is an investigation into the no. 4 Broad st, stoke-on-trent (AirSpace Gallery) and part two is an investigation into no. 204. Gloucester Rd. Bristol (Windows 204).