Architecture, Building and Planning > Architecture, Building and Planning not elsewhere classified
Social studies > Human and Social Geography by topic
Creative Arts and Design > Fine Art
Creative Arts and Design > Visual Communication
Creative Arts and Design > Film & Video
Creative Arts and Design > Photography]
Out of a residency by artist Tom Hunter on the Woodberry Down estate in Hackney, east London, comes a film he made with older residents called A Palace for Us.
This is a magical film. It weaves the memories of people who grew up in east London and have lived on the estate since it opened into a silvery thread of meaning illuminated by dramatisations of their experiences filmed in the aged, but dignified, Woodberry Down buildings and public spaces. The estate, begun in 1946 and completed in 1963, was like a "palace" to those who remembered the East End slums, remembers one participant. But the film is also a palace of memory. Contemporary art often seems obsessed with youth: here it listens to the stories the old have to tell.
It evokes all our stories. Britain in 1945, out of the ruins of war, built the welfare state that clever rich kids are now so casually pulling apart. Estates like Woodberry Down embody an ideal of decent housing for all that was born out of the miseries of the 1930s and terror of the 1940s. A Palace for Us gently and acutely bears witness to this history that is now being dismantled.
Hunter's film is not a rant, but a moving homage to lives and memories that today are obliterated by harsh and violent caricatures of the white working class. Everyone should go to the Serpentine to learn to see through his subjects' eyes. The government should go.
|Type of Research:||Show/Exhibition|
|Your affiliations with UAL:||Colleges > London College of Communication|
Research Centres/Networks > Photography & the Archive Research Centre (PARC)
Research Groups > Historical and Cultural Studies
|Date:||12 December 2010|
|Copyright Holders:||tom hunter|
|Funders:||The Serpentine Gallery, Age concern, Hackney Council, Bloomberg, Rayne Foundation, City of London, Smoke and Mirrors, Lottery Founded, The Housing Corporation, The City Bridge Fund, Camden Council|
|Related Websites:||http://www.serpentinegallery.org/2009/01/the_skills_exchange_project.html, http://www.guardian.co.uk/artanddesign/2010/dec/09/tom-hunter-serpentine-gallery-review, http://www.serpentinegallery.org/2010/12/tom_hunter_a_palace_for_us_8_d_1.html|
|Related Exhibitions:||East London Film Festival, Land of Kings festival, London, Students, Patients Paupers, LSE, London|
|Projects or Series:||Research Outputs Review (April 2010 - April 2011)|
|Locations / Venues:|
|Measurements or Duration of item:||19 mins|
|Deposited By:||Professor Tom Hunter|
|Deposited On:||02 Nov 2011 14:37|
|Last Modified:||09 Dec 2013 13:29|