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A Seat in the Memory – can you help?

Almost eight months into the four year part time masters degree in Fine Art, James Kowacz, one of OCA’s current MA students, is embarking on a fascinating participative project,  ‘A Seat in the Memory’.  He is looking for people to contribute to it.  Whether you are a photographer, artist or creative writer, you can contribute to this project.  He says:
‘The year so far has been met with a range of intriguing and thought provoking challenges that is already turning our artwork on its head, but by far the most challenging project so far is to create and exhibit a piece of work that breaks the norm. As the saying goes “If you always do what you always did, then you’ll always get what you always got.” Breaking the boundaries is the title of the project and is designed to get you out of that comfortable shoe that is your artwork and stick on a pair of high heels as you stumble through a realm of ideas, trip up on the different challenges you find yourself up against until you fall flat on your face, and hey presto, you have a piece of work. Or maybe this is just my experience of it so far?
My usual line of work is based around using sugar to create artwork to reflect on the daily life of a diabetic but ‘Breaking the Boundaries’ demands something completely different.  ‘A Seat in the Memory’ is a project relating to our memories of using benches. Benches are everywhere and play an important part in our lives. They are where we sit and have a sandwich, meet a friend or write a postcard.  Benches are often used as memorials to people, but can we consider what the benches’ memories are? Imagine what the benches have seen!
‘A Seat in the Memory’ asks the audience to take a postcard sent to them and write memories of a time or different times they remember using a bench. The postcards have images of benches on them that have been taken in many different locations across the country, to jog the memory of the audience. These memories are then to be returned to the artist to form a pure and transverse collection that will continue to grow and form its own memorial to the bench.  All you have to do is write of a memory including a bench. This could be a mundane every day break for a bite to eat or something more profound.  If you would like to take part in this project, please send an e-mail to jameskowacz@hotmail.com registering your interest. Please include your name and your address so that a pre-stamped postcard can be sent to you.

Posted by author: Jane Parry
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8 thoughts on “A Seat in the Memory – can you help?

  • Sounds a fascinating project James. I have e-mailed my details to you and look forward to seeing how the research progresses!

  • It is a very interesting project: I’ve sent an email. By strange coincidence, I was recently asked to do some work in response to another MA student project and chose the theme of a memorial bench. I wrote a piece about it on my blog.
    I am told this was the most popular subject and got a wide range of responses, so clearly the theme has resonance for many. Best of luck with your project.

  • What a fascinating project ‘A Seat in the Memory’. I have an image in mind that I love, but have never given it any real consideration before. It was just a quite place to reflect. I will email you my address. It is one of my favourite benches in Lanzarote, Canary Islands, where I live, (and often sit and reflect on life and my Textile related projects from time to time).

    • I Lost my father recently and would like to arrange a memorial bench in Lanzarote my dad’s favourite promenade. Would you be able to point me in the direction of anyone who could help me?

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