A giant hunt in the North

Over winter, I worked with The Bare Project, an interactive arts company from South Yorkshire, on a film about their two-week residency at Lyth Arts Centre in Caithness. After research on people's relationship with the land, big social and environmental challenges we face today and a hunt for modern-day giants, the film is out now. Poetic, full of wisdom and Caithness' big big skies.

Created in collaboration with artists/researcher Malaika Cunningham, sound designer Lee Affen and myself. Commissioned by ESRC Festival of Social Science and supported by the Centre for Understanding Sustainable Prosperity, Creative Carbon Scotland and Artsadmin.

The Bare Project's work - be it traditional stage productions, conversation evenings or projects told through the post - is often led by a question that the project tries to answer. In Caithness, they asked us:

If you were a more-than-mortal power that could shape the landscape, what would you do?

I spent three days following them to remote beaches in Caithness, local food producers, old forests and to the feast they organised for the local community at the end of their residency, as they posed this question and invited people to dive into the magic of their imagination.

Meet the artists behind The Bare Project in the film and their giants Grinshunk, Varnaclay, Hahm and Losbyrner. As Malaika and producer Charlotte Mountford write:

'These characters are starting points, and this residency became a testing ground for whether this approach to thinking about land is fruitful: artistically and politically. We know that stories can help us lose ourselves a bit, to open a realm of possibilities and magic. And from this space, perhaps we are better able to look at the world around us—and to reimagine more reciprocal and respectful relationships with the land upon which we depend.'

Read their full blog here: https://cusp.ac.uk/themes/a/the-fifth-giant/

Stills from The Fifth Giant

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