This summer, visitors to CAT can meet a very special quarry resident. Artist Holly Owen introduces Geoffrey Grey, our resident story-collector, and looks at how you can get involved in an innovative project exploring responses to climate change.
Blending our different art practices together, our project seeks to inspire environmental action through shared empathy, honesty and the lived experience.
Using our unique combination of immersive sound technology, environmentally un-intrusive sculpture and film, our project celebrates areas around the world that are environmentally significant. Spending time in these places, we invite local people to share their stories, concerns and solutions in the face of global climate change with a life-size head sculpted from site-specific materials. Audiences are drawn into a continuous switch between home and place, stimulating emotive response, shared concern and grassroots action.
The first film in our series entitled Switching Heads – sound mapping the Arctic was filmed in 2015 in the remote frozen city of Tromsø, deep within the Arctic Circle. Searching always for the true story, we captured local people’s concern for their home sinking beneath the rising Arctic sea, the loss of their traditional and contemporary culture, and the extinction of their iconic species, as well as excitement at the idea of one day having a longer, hotter summer.
This year we are delighted to bring Switching Heads to the Centre for Alternative Technology. Having spent seven months at CAT as their 2015-2016 artist in residence I am delighted to have the opportunity to work alongside this influential organisation again and this time to be able to transport audiences around the country and beyond to this unique and beautiful location.
Every day from 24th July to 1st August Kristina and I will be filming Switching Heads – sound mapping the Quarry alongside the third member of our Welsh team Geoffrey Grey. Geoffrey, a life-sized head that we have sculpted from CAT’s very own quarry slate, will be waiting to hear stories from CAT’s visitors as they explore the centre’s gardens, woodland paths and exhibits.
Keep up to date with Geoffrey’s adventures on the Switching Heads blog.