The Culturapedia team are keen to continue to offer digital opportunities to engage in great art. Working with a group of library and museum staff from across Lancashire, we have commissioned Parvez Qadir to create a soundscape reflecting our prized and everyday cultural spaces.
The soundscape is due to be released in Spring 2023 and will tour to libraries and community venues across Lancashire.
Six new linked digital stories will add to our growing collection of intimate short videos, available on the Spot On website. A group of Spot On supporters and audience members are working with artists to curate a theme for this new season that will air in the New Year. We are working with artists who might not typically tour our Lancashire venues. Contributors range from Rosie Garland, a writer and poet; American-born writer, playwright and director Cheryl Martin; Nick Cassenbaum, who is a London-based theatre maker; shalan joudry, a Mi’kmaw narrative artist based in Canada; Ellen Renton, a poet based in Scotland and Sonia Hughes, an artist, writer and performer based in the North West.
Here at Culturapedia, we have embraced the hybrid world. We have a small but growing gallery of digital art commissions on the Spot On website. ‘Hit the North’ by Matt Wilkinson explored Lancashire accents from different parts of the county through found poetry.
We commissioned Elliot Flanagan just as Covid-19 hit. ‘Monument’ is a short film lamenting the social interaction we missed through coming together to share a cultural experience.
We worked with a group of young librarians from Lancashire to co-curate these commissions. Hit the North toured to library and rural venues in the Autumn of 2019 and featured in the Burnley Literary Festival. Due to the pandemic, Monument couldn’t tour the same way but was projected onto Blackburn Town Hall over New Year 2021. We are currently planning another digital commission for 2022.
In March 2020, the Spot On Spring season of live shows came to an abrupt halt. At this point, we came up with a plan that would give employment opportunities to underemployed artists (initially those that we’d cancelled) and keep Spot On in the public eye.
Spot On Stories and Spot On Shorts are low-cost-self-capture videos by professional performers made freely available on Facebook and YouTube and targeted at library and rural audiences in Lancashire.
Between April and July 2019, we put out two a week – one focused on children and families and the other on grown-ups. We will never compete with NTLive or commercial movies for production values without massive budgets. Most views have occurred on mobile phones, followed by tablets. People know and understand the difference between something they might see on the BBC and watching on YouTube. The difference in production values has not deterred YouTube viewing figures. Low-cost capture provides intimacy, immediacy and an audience connection that is not the intention with high-level productions.
Our second season of Shorts and Stories was commissioned by The Space. We then followed up this project with Flash Fiction – even shorter stories featuring prompts to viewers for developing their own writing.
Our Shorts and Stories are analogue activities, recorded and shared digitally. Youtube and Facebook are our online gallery.
You can access our guide to low-cost self capture for artists on our resources page.