Abstract

Site-integrity is a particular but original mode of site-specific practice that responds directly to the site and its community. Artistic devices articulate the material, architectural, social, institutional discourses present in site as a dynamic network or system of exchange. In site-integrity place is apparatus, in each specific site the recording device operates in a distinctly different manner providing different techniques and outcomes in each site. This methodology offers a collaborative approach to fieldwork, transforming the traditional anthropological ‘subject of research’ into the producer of its own voice. This egalitarian approach to art making encourages reflexive conversations that avoid reductive ethnographic portraits of ‘subjects’ and fixed representation. 

Site-integrity performs site through artistic devices operating in temporal relations with space and place. Within this site-specific context the artworks produced cannot be separated from the temporal. Taking a non-representational position (Bolt, 2004, p.12) this research builds upon “place as emergent, relational and beyond representational regimes” (Massey, 2005, p.11). It builds upon Massey’s rejection to collapse space into representation, that is, to a given, pre-existing cognitive structure or conceptual schema by implicitly performing involvements in, as opposed to observations on, site.

keywords: site, community, performance, site specific, architecture, representation, cultural heritage, archive.

Assembly

Assembly is a series of site-specific installations that perform Muslim prayer spaces, comprising of 1:1 scaled moving floor projections with 5.1-surround sound. As the audience enters each prayer site the projection is activated, revealing a pre-recorded film of congregational prayer. The digital moving image hovers improbably above its ‘real’ counterpart, providing an opportunity to experience prayer in situ, via the site-performance. 

Siting cinema

Siting cinema visually explores the cinema space as ‘site’ through a series of film installations made in independent art cinemas across the UK. The primary experience of watching and the secondary experience of representing are merged, through a machine that records the space in the past and acts in the present.  The artwork has two roles: one to locate (anchor the audience within the cinema space) and the other to disorientate (see the cinema space in a new way).  

Screen space

Screen space explores the space between site and it’s representation. iPads are mounted on motorised tracks that creak and squeak following their designated path. As the iPad moves over the static architectural site, the exact representation in scale is seen on the screen. The screen’s scanning movement simultaneously conceals and reveals the real architectural site below.