Three images and a soundscape from my locative art walk ‘here nor there’ are included in a central section of ‘space boy’. More details can be found on my website www.davemd.co.uk.
This story was made at a four day workshop for artists interested in facilitating Bristol Stories workshops. The theme was “Maps and journeys”.
The workshop was led by Aikaterini Gegisian and Liz Milner and was supported by Bristol’s Museums, Galleries & Archives.
As a child of the 1960’s, space exploration and the dreams of space age technology had a big impact on the culture (TV, games, toys) I grew up. Along with 723 million others I watched the grainy black & white TV pictures of the 1969 moon landing, and still have vivid memories of the experience - I’m not sure what was more exciting: man landing on the moon or getting up in the middle of the night to watch it on TV!
As an adult my world is filled with the technology (mobile computing and communication devices) that 1960’s popular culture alluded to and that I could only dream about as a boy: what was once thought of as ‘space age’ is now deemed to be ‘every day’. With every technological advancement I have always embraced the arrival of new gadgetry and without too much thought accepted them as part of my everyday life.
However my recent use of GPS technology and the satellites spinning in the sky have made me stop and think. By documenting a series of walks in Bristol, and then allowing others to locate my sounds and images using satellites and a handheld computer, I have once again made a connection with Space and with it, myself.
As a child I looked up and out at this and other worlds. As a middle-aged man, although open to possibility and change my tendency is to look down at my own children, back at my own past and reflect on the detail rather than the bigger picture. The use of GPS has taken me back to my childhood, and in a sense closed a circle. It feels as if I have shaken hands with myself as a boy, and again I feel excited and in awe at the possibilities that new technology may bring.
All media not otherwise credited created by the story author, or permission obtained, used under copyright licence.
Moon picture created by jurvetson, flickr.com, used under Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 2.5 licence.
Action Man created by Pikaluk, flickr.com, used under Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 2.5 licence.