Concerned with issues of peaceability and citizenship, the project links three cities with complex histories: Regina is a place struggling with the legacy of colonization and Canada’s cultural genocide of Aboriginal people; Coventry (UK) is officially designated an International City of Peace and Reconciliation related to its devastation in WWII; and Gyumri (Armenia) is a city recovering from the legacies of war, genocide and natural disaster.
The aim of the project is to create a context where new forms of translocal dialogues can emerge. For the duration of the two-week ‘live’ phase running November 3-14, a gallery space in each city hosted students as they create an unfolding dialogue of images, sounds, videos, physical structures, objects and stories in response to the question of how artists can shift the narratives of their cities beyond histories of trauma towards linked, creative futures.
Together, students transformed each space into an imagined translocal place drawing from elements of each of the three cities. A library area in each gallery featured research materials such as maps, newspapers and catalogues giving insight into the context of each location.
#3CityLink was supported by Coventry University’s Disruptive Media Learning Lab.
Students in each of the locations investigate their city – the current concerns of their locale, its histories, its systems and structures, and question the role of the artist in building narratives, revealing lost histories and imagining the future of where they live.
The three groups used Skype and social media to be connected, and ‘live linked’ for 2 hours each day, working together to find common links, build intercultural connections and create artworks in each of the three gallery spaces.
Documentation of research and creative work will be used to create a co-produced publication as a final outcome of the project (in collaboration with the Gyumri Times, Armenian cultural publication) and an online wiki archive.
CU Student Participants: 103 students in the academic year 2014-15.
Modules: Developing Fine Art Practice & Introduction to Fine Art Practice
Courses: BA Fine Art, BA Fine Art & Illustration
Level of Study: Undergraduate, Years One & Two
The project was one of the two finalist in the category Online International Learning of Coventry University Excellence Awards 2015.