The last example of the Saxby & Farmer Type 8 design on the ex L.Y.R. Built in 1876. it's future is uncertain. demolition is on the cards. let's get a conversation going about how to save - and use - this brierfield LYR icon
Despite the deep onset of 'busyman-flu' I had the pleasure of the company of two gentlemen willing to share their life experiences and knowledge of Soul over several cups of black coffee and pots of tea. We made plans for next years 'Recorded Soul: The All-Nighter' at Manchester's Victoria Baths. Details will be released once DJs are confirmed but if you are interested in Art & Soul then you need to block out the 3rd and 4th May 2014. Off on a tangent time: Occasionally life gives us a sign to confirm that things are ok and that we're on the right path and today a sign appeared all by itself when we were discussing a small personal collaborative research project between Bernard and Roy. You will however, have to wait until the event at Victoria Baths to see what that collaboration produces but as we were talking Bernard began to refer to their collaboration as R & B... referencing their names Roy & Bernard. For me this was a eureka moment (could be the drugs I'm on for my cold?) and I immediately got excited and haven't stopped thinking about it and how relevant it is given the subject of Soul music. End of tangent. On another note. The original Russ Winstanley record boxes finally arrived and I can now start working on the design to house the Recorded Soul archive. Again... watch this space for further developments.
Inspired by an annual theme within the libraries, In-Situ were successful in securing funding from the local initiatives fund through Lancashire County Council. This fund has enabled us to create a series of creative sessions for young people aged 13 +. The seasons have been planned around the types of activities young people we have been meeting in the library and at the local college Marsden Heights. We have started exploring music making with More Music in Morecambe, digital arts with Art Locates Me and Fashion with Street Style Surgery. We are working with local partners Project Pride.
The young people haven't really experienced any form of creative workshops and therefore this process will open up ideas as to what they may like to develop in the future with In-Situ and also gain experience working along side artists and creative practitioners. Here are some of the early results:
Laying down some beats and writing raps
Playing with manipulated images for projection
Spray painting t-shirts
As part of the work some of the young people are aiming to achieve there Bronze Arts Award and we visited Contact Theatre in Manchester to see a modern version of Romeo & Juliet.
Here is a quick update on our project exploring the culture of Northern Soul.
We are aiming to complete the dance video by the end of the year with a view to having a launch party. The upcoming short film is a blend of moving biographical anecdotes from local dance legend Roy Stewart together with footage of the young people at their dance lessons over a period of 12 months culminating in them entering The World Northern Soul Dance Championships at Blackpool Tower.
The submergence into Northern Soul culture has allowed In-Situ to collect over 2500 photographs of items (vinyl, tickets, badges, tattoos, magazines, posters etc) and this number continues to rise at a rapid rate. This ultimately led to the creation of 'Recorded Soul': an archiving project of all things from the 'The Northern Soul Scene'.
The project has a Facebook Page to share information regarding the current soul scene, which is undergoing something of a global revival.
The digital archive will soon have a physical presence in Brierfield Library and we see this as a major development in locating this fascinating collection of photographs/videos locally, just around the corner from Walter Street Working Men's Club, which incidentally used to be a 'Feeder' club to Wigan Casino in the 1970s: place where dancers would hangout before going to the 'all-nighter' sessions at The Casino.
The photograph below is of an original 45s (singles) Record Box designed/produced by the legendary Northern Soul DJ Russ Winstanley and was shared with us by Jordan Wilson, one of The Wigan Young Souls.
It is the inspiration for a design to house the Recorded Soul archive... watch this space (box)!