Over the course of our research and development, we have been developing a new way of making work, which seeks to share as much of the research process as possible with the public, as the project developed. This commitment was made as a result of wanting to share with audiences not only the artistic results of our research process, but also the insights gained along the way. In practice, this has entailed both online and live engagements, including the creation of the World Factory shirt, a digitally-enhanced consumer item that reveals the people and processes behind its making.
The Digital Quilt: The process of artistic research has been shared in public through this bespoke interactive website. A patchwork of texts, images and videos, the digital quilt provides a communication platform and research-sharing tool for international exchange and conversations between artists, and a way of involving the public in sharing stories and knowledge. See here for more details.
Café Conversations: These are small-scale public events where we invite experts to share their stories with us, in the informal setting of a café or gallery, with the dual purpose of: (1) bringing together different perspectives on the history and politics of the global textile system, to further our research (2) developing a live, public, political conversation around these questions These events not only enabled us to invite experts to share their perspectives with a wider audience than just the artists involved in the project, but through attracting an excitingly diverse audience, has brought us into contact with further experts we might never otherwise have met (e.g. Anne Lally, consultant with the Fairwear Foundation, and Mark Dowling, an expert in investigating companies’ resource-use with Giraffe Management – both of were attendees at a Café Conversation who we then invited to speak at subsequent events). The other outcome of this process was to hone a mode of public face-to-face conversation about political issues, bringing together strangers in groups of between 25-50, depending on the event, to address some urgent questions of our time. These experiences fed directly into the way we then structured the parameters for the conversations invited in the World Factory performances in April-June 2015.
For further details of speakers and events, please see:
CVS Media House residency – February 2015
World Factory: considering consumption – January 2015
Pulse: The Shirt and The Shop – June 2014
World Factory: 28 Hands Make Light Work – February 2014
World Factory: A Conversation in Progress – November 2013
World Factory: Presenting Research – May 2013