Place Beyond Place
I attended a one day symposium in Preston called Place Beyond Place. The symposium aimed to analyse the impact of the global on the local, looking at urban design, public art and regeneration. I was particularly interested in attending due to my interest in local distinctiveness.
It was an absorbing day with talks from Loraine Lesson, who has worked on socially engaged projects around the theme of urban regeneration since the 80's, and Paul Goodwin, who has recently carried out a research project on 'Re-Visioning Black History'. A key point for me in Paul Goodwin's talk was the consideration of modernism as dehumanising. He talked about the idea of vernacular architecture, sighting 'shanty towns' as an example of the people's architecture and mentioned a book in relation to this called, 'Learning From Las Vagas', which I am keen to read.
In the afternoon we went on 'alternative' guided tours around Preston, exploring the city through its social, cultural and natural connections to other, global places. I thought that this was a really interesting idea and I was fascinated to see how the four different artists conducted their tours. The two that interested me the most were William Titley's and Rebecca Chesney's.
William gave an experience of Lahore through the streets of Preston, which linked with my interest in how we interpret place through our own personal associations. (Picture Credit Above: William Titley, Road Block)
Rebecca on the other hand gave a tour of weeds around Preston questioning where the plants have come from and examining the ever changing urban environment alongside human activity. This connects with my interest in nature verses the built environment and how the two sit together. (Picture Credit Below: Rebecca Chesney, Dandelion)
You can read more about the symposium here: http://www.placebeyondplace.info/