‘Just Grazing @HOME’
Residency, 2015, Installation & Engagement, fostered by Life in Vacant Spaces, Christchurch, New Zealand.
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To coincide with the demolition of our home in Christchurch, and to fill the gap before the rebuild, I felt it only natural to consider the concept of ‘home’. Being 18,000km away from my home helped open my mind to re-imagining what this actually means. To me. To you. To Christchurch as they bid farewell to their previous ‘home’, build new roots and welcome their future ‘home’.
The project started with a proposal made by myself to Life in Vacant Spaces as a time to ‘graze’ in a central location within the CBD. Here, I gained a great opportunity to base myself within the city’s liminal space for a week to explore ‘life’ in a quake city as well as help feed the city’s ever evolving ideas development.
Inside, I aimed to create a simple interactive experience, with the theme of ‘home’ being an anchor for initial ideas exchange. Essentially, I wanted to use the space in view of meeting likeminded people, encourage an informal exchange of ideas and help to foster the sustainability of creative ideas development within the CBD during this transitional time.
I would create a homely space, where I will facilitate the opportunity for people to drop-by for a cuppa, chat and to connect others as well as a base from which I could gather ideas and develop them. I collected stories, experiences and artefacts and culminated this period of exploration in a collective exhibition inside the Microhouse. The end product was an evolving installation piece that took shape from connecting with the community, growing relationships and documenting stories. I used this to reimagine ‘home’ and write a new story of this experience, exhibited to the public throughout and as a showcase as a one-off ‘housewarming’ event.
I saw this experience as important grazing time for me, and the city, and a useful recipe to help feed the bigger picture. It provided me with a valuable opportunity for fresh documentation of this ever-changing city space, unjudged, just, insightful, poignant and laid bare. I came to realise that if you feel truly ‘at home’, you feel you can lay bare your expressions. Simple. On paper. Handmade ideas and work. Handmade city.