1878 and an inexplicable series of visions
Part 2: a fraction of a second after the previous one
‘1878: moment to moment’ – a re-visiting of one of the “inexplicable visions” of the 2015 work – formed the basis a new installation for the Cupar Arts Festival 2016.
Part one – Shine at the Byre
Devised as a collaboration between the School of Physics and Astronomy and the Music Centre of the University of St Andrew, Shine is a very exciting project for 2015 and established to celebrate the International year of Light in St Andrews.
Led by astronomer Anne-Marie Weijmans, Shine aims to bring together Science, Music and Art in this highly innovative project which staged its main event for the year in the Byre Theatre, St Andrews on Saturday the 7th of November.
The music element of the project has been led by Bede Williams, director of New Music at the University of St Andrews, and as a key part of the main event on the 7th of November, new music was commissioned from the composer and flute player Eddie Mcguire.
The final member of the team is Tim Fitzpatrick of The Red Field and Tim’s task has been to create an installation for the Byre Theatre drawing inspiration from the work of Anne-Marie – and in particular her mapping of near galaxies – and the new music of Eddie McGuire.
1878 and an inexplicable series of visions
1878 and an inexplicable series of visions by Tim Fitzpatrick was a multi-site installation commissioned for the Pittenweem Arts Festival of 2015.
With its starting point as a re-imagined moment in September 1878 when the Lorimer family spent their first night in Kellie Castle, the project revolves around a cocooned and sleeping figure – the sleeping Louise – who has been waiting for the moment and for her awakening.
1878 was a year long project of intimate happenings – at Kellie Castle, in the grounds and beyond in Pittenweem – involving public participation, and artists from various media.
Over a year the project unfolded in a series of visions where coincidences, history, time and an inexplicable world entwined and un-entwined and, through all of which, Louise slept on.
1878’s finale, on the last day of the Pittenweem Festival was a mixed media evening with film and music and with many of the collaborating artists present. These included Maggie Moffat, David Sim, Hilke MacKintyre and musician Feargus Hetherington.
In 2015 The Red Field completed a community arts project for Clayfest. This was festival for Earth Build UK, a non-profit organisation fostering the understanding, appreciation and development of building with earth, and featured a week-long programme of earth workshops and events around in international conference in Errol, Perthshire.
The theme of the conference was the culture of earth building and this explored how people and places reflect the experience of building with clay.
As part of the festival The Red Field created a community arts project inspired by the various sites of disappearing former clay dwellings that punctuate the landscape.
Un-melting re-created and re-imagined these sites through clay, reflecting on the theme of habitation, and with the words of award winning poet Kathleen Jamie.
The project now continues as we document and photograph the newly created sites and how they re-melt back into the landscape.
The Fragments project
After its two year tour of the Scottish Borders, the Fragments project drew to a close with a stunning one-off event at Glasgow Cathedral and with new music by Goldie and performed by the Andante Chamber Choir and our own Goldie orchestra in Scotland!
As with our earlier collaborators of Séan Doherty, Michael Nyman and Grayston Ives, the inspiration for Goldie’s new work are the ancient chants that came to light with the discovery of the Hawick missal fragment.
The Fragments project was led by art director Tim Fitzpatrick and music director Matthew Cheung Salisbury. More on Fragments here.
Stories of daily life in China told in a unique rickshaw theatre during the Edinburgh festival in August 2014.
In the rickshaw a pair of performers create a miniature world for an audience of just two. Step into the rickshaw, sip a cup of Jasmine tea, choose an object, relax for ten minutes, and enter the world of Dumpling Dreams…
…’How many eggs do I need to pay for a year’s school fees and books?’ wonders a 7 year old girl in a Shandong village.
…Why would a mother leave her children and work 16 hours a day on a construction site, carrying hods of bricks?
Through image, music and words in a mix of Mandarin and English, no two stories are the same, but all of them are true. The performers’ dreams will be complemented by a programme of short films, music, crafts and pop-up events all centred round the Rickshaw
The Night of the Moon Festival is a time for imagining new worlds and other lives and this collection of stories remembered and retold gives a flavour of the hopes and dreams of ordinary…and extraordinary…..Chinese people.
This project is a product of several innovative organisations and individuals in China:
• the Beijing Community Rickshaw Gallery is a unique project working in migrant villages in the suburbs of Beijing, gathering stories & featuring exhibitions from artists & communities in the city.
• Hua Dan Theatre, founded by social entrepreneur, Caroline Watson, is a pioneering Chinese NGO that uses grassroots theatre to work with migrant women, workers and families in urban Beijing and rural Sichuan. It is celebrating its ten year anniversary this year;
• Entrepreneur, Li Peng and theatre maker, Jessica Fusco-Naish work between China and Europe to support artistic exchange.
None receive any state funding in China and exist on donations, sponsorship and small self- generated projects. They are here thanks to the generous financial support of the Confucius Institute for Scotland, in collaboration with Scottish companies, Tinderbox Theatre Project, and The Red Field.
Venue: Summerhall Courtyard , Performers: Dong Fen, Guo Jin Lian and Tao Yang Yang Director: Jessica Fusco-Naish
On a clear day
In October 2013 a new performance piece ‘On a clear day’ was created for the dementia patients and staff of the Forth Valley Royal Hospital and the Clackmananshire Community Healthcare Centre by The Red Field in collaboration with the physical theatre company Oceanallover.
Over three days of meeting staff and patients and developing the performance pieces, the performers and production team created a final event with music and movement for each hospital.
From our conversations with patients and staff and with the memories and reflections of the patients, Tim Fitzpatrick then developed a narrative that would form the basis for a short film project ‘On a clear day’ using filmed material from the events and additional material filmed in rural Dumfries and Galloway.
Looking in, looking out: The life and work of Wilhelmina Barns-Graham
Looking in, looking out is a recently completed film project for the Barns-Graham Charitable Trust. The trust was established in 1987 to safeguard Wilhelmina Barns-Graham’s archive of work and promote her legacy, in addition to supporting contemporary artists, writers and researchers.
It provides artists and writers the space and resources with which to develop their work through administering a residency programme and provides financial support for Arts students, through scholarships or bursaries to further their education in the Fine Arts and the History of Art.
Wilhelmina Barns-Graham (1912-2004) was one of the foremost painters working in St Ives after moving there in 1940. Her paintings, alongside those of her contemporaries that comprise the St Ives school, contributed greatly to the development of Modernist British painting in the mid to late twentieth century. From 1960 she divided her time between her homes in St Ives and St Andrews, affirming herself as much a Scottish as Cornish artist. She was completely dedicated to her art, with a drive and energy that sustained her for over sixty years of her professional life. She was still working daily at the very end.
The beginning of a story
In 2012 the Royal Forth Valley Hospital commissioned a light and sound piece for the public atrium of the new Forth Valley Royal Hospital in Larbert.
The imagery of the piece was projected onto the huge white atrium wall of the hospital entrance with the sound set at various points in the vast roof space.
The relationship between image and sound was re-made and transformed with each cycle and, through this, the piece combined the idea of a pathway through a forest and the beginning of a story along with all the possibilities, chance occurances and new pathways that this might allow for.
Shadows 2012 built on our launch event of the previous year and began what we hope to be a journey around Scotland through each of the five World Heritage Sites to mark World Heritage Day on April the 18th.
An alphabetical approach seemed like a good way to go so off we headed to the Antonine Wall, the Roman wall across the narrow bit of Scotland that, for a brief period in history, marked the most Northerly frontier of the Roman Empire.
The Croy miners’ Welfare community hall offered us a fantastic venue at the foot of Croy Hill, over which the wall once passed, and from the four other sites across Scotland came over 100 participants combining music, sculpture, film, photography and physical theatre.
Shadows of our Ancestors
Shadows of our Ancestors was a project that focussed on the five World Heritage sites of Scotland. It began in January 2011 and concluded on World Heritage Day, the 18th of April 2011. The project was carried out in conjunction with Historic Scotland and the management organisations of each of the five sites with overall creative leadership by Tim Fitzpatrick. Scotland’s World Heritage Sites are: St Kilda, Orkney, The Old and New Towns of Edinburgh, New Lanark and The Antonine Wall.
With each site the project worked with a key community group, each through the leadership of a local artist, and the outcomes of each group were in the form of cultural connections to the five sites. Those connections were linked across the five sites on the website, through the media and in bringing the ideas and materials together for five simultaneous events to celebrate World Heritage Day.
A story preceded the event and in it a traveller criss-crossed a landscape from dark hinterlands to the sea and came to see it and understand it as a timeless and infinite place.
In the story, a sense of timelessness and of a world hovering between the natural and the supernatural, is routed in medieval Fife. A place, like the world around it, where powerful and elemental forces, natural and political, were at work shaping the land and its people.
In her innocence the traveller accepts what she finds and follows an instinctive path. The only thing that she carries to the end of the journey is memory. A truly amazing memory.
The project Another Land created a path back and forth across Fife from the summer solstice of 2010 to a final event on the 25th of February 2011. We were helped by numerous Fife schools, community groups and the artist members of Contemporary Arts Dunfermline. It concluded, as The Pilgrim had before it, at Dunfermline Abbey and with the births of three children! Baby Docherty was born at five past eight AM on the 25th, Ruari Cunningham at 3.25 AM on the 26th and Bryan Harry Thomson at 8.07 AM on the 27th of February. The final event at the abbey revealed the earlier journeying across Fife to have been the dreaming of an un-born child.
Although the site specific project ‘The Pilgrim’ was completed before the formation of The Red Field, many of the Red Field team were involved with The Pilgrim and the project came to form the basis of much Tim Fitzpatrick’s approach to site specific ideas in light and sound. The Pilgrim also acted as a blueprint for the larger project of 2010/11, ‘Another Land’.
“The Pilgrim: a path, a voice, a vision and ten thousand burning stars” was a site specific light, sound and performance piece that took place at Dunfermline Abbey over two nights in November 2008.
The project found its inspiration in a building that had been a place of pilgrimage for hundreds of years and the installation and public event over the two November nights set out to imagine a journey and a journey’s end.