I have spent the last few months mulling over how to approach the 'Donning Oxford' project that, as well as co-curating, I am exhibiting in. The text below gives a good insight as to how my own work is going to take shape...
The Truth behind Oxford?
On my first research visit to Oxford I set out with the intention of unearthing what it was that made Oxford, Oxford. I wanted to try to capture the essence of this city; I was looking to make sense of it. I observed and recorded in an effort to uncover clues which would help me decipher its truth.
It became clear as I explored this city that it is one of mystery: Buildings and places where entrance is restricted yet which display tantalising views and hint at a secret world beyond.
View over the wall: one of the Oxford University Colleges
Walking its streets, I observed how the city imparts compelling extracts of its narratives; snippets of conversation overheard or fleeting moments observed; stories of which we can only guess the beginnings or endings. In this exploration of the city I found myself drawn to the detritus and marks left behind, whose traces belied the stories played out on the city's stage.
I find myself approaching this enquiry as a detective would a mystery. I am trying to piece together the evidence in an attempt to reconstruct and retell this city's stories.
Strange signs on the Oxford streets