5 Days in Liverpool – Day 5

The final day! We each presented our musings to each other during the course of the afternoon. Some have responded to the local area by collecting photographic and audio evidence, others talked to local community groups and thought about re-appropriation of space. There have been artistic interventions using ‘objets trouvés’, a deeply personal communiqué inspired by the week and ongoing, unrelated work which has been progressed within the framework of the LAB. For those that responded to the local area, and I count myself one, a common theme was reclamation/re-appropriation of space and in particular re-designation of ‘liminal’ spaces, ie those in-between areas that have accrued meaning through usage and social signification.

I presented my explorations as described in the previous post and also another idea linked to reclamation of the ‘sheep pens’. I imagine how augmented reality might be used to create a game and/or an event. A free app would enable users to participate.

A game might feature ‘virtual sheep adoption’ and perhaps a time-limited competition with some sheep-related prizes – an inflatable version of the winning sheep? Tending and virtually feeding the sheep by visiting the sheep pens with the largest sheep winning might be a simple approach. Throw in a virtual bogeyman who occasionally steals sheep just to spice things up.

An event appeals to me in terms of blending virtual with real. Perhaps every evening for a week a huge virtual bogeyman appears precisely at sunset to devour a poor sheep resident in one of the pens. Crowds gather in anticipation. A sound system is used to add impact – placid sheep grazing noises are overwhelmed by a blood curdling yell as the bogeyman materializes. Although visual impact would be achieved via augmented reality objects rendered on handheld devices, audio would be heard by all and I wonder if this aural ubiquity coupled with a carefully nurtured sense of anticipation would lead to greater suspension of disbelief?

Although having fun, these ideas are borne out of the serious notion of re-invigorating a desolate area through the transformative power of art.

Many thanks to Metal Culture for inviting me to the LAB, adios Liverpool, see you soon I hope!