New Lanark’s autumn exhibition looking at the decline of Scottish industry gets underway this Saturday.
As a historic hub of learning and leisure, New Lanark is hosting Snapshots of a Lost World: the Decline of Scottish Industry.
The exhibition displays the Historic Environment Scotland (HES) photography exhibition, Industry and Aesthetics, which explores emotional responses to photographs of abandoned industrial spaces as a jumping off point to explore reactions to New Lanark’s decline as a working mill, and living village. The exhibition takes you on a journey of its past, present and imagining its future.
Running from 14 September – 27 October, this unique exhibition is displayed in three parts. Firstly, soak up the Industry and Aesthetics HES touring exhibition before absorbing the historic images from the New Lanark Archive, showing the abandoned industrial landscape of the 60s/70s/80s.
This will be supplemented by contemporary pictures submitted by visitors as part of a summer photography competition which will serve to lead the narrative into the opportunities that these abandoned spaces present, and this is reflected in. And lastly, enjoy the projects from Architectural undergraduate students from Glasgow School of Art that imagine what direction the industry and work in New Lanark could go in the future.
This exhibition was created by Historic Environment Scotland (HES), the lead public body established to investigate, who care for and promote Scotland’s historic environment. The exhibition images were taken by (HES) as part of its ongoing mission to document Scotland’s historic environment. Multiple images are taken as part of creating a record in order to help us remember and better understand our industrial heritage.
As well as being responsible for over 300 properties of national importance, HES has a large and ever-growing archive of drawings, photographs and information on the nation’s archaeology, architecture and industry. The photographs in this exhibition form part of the National Record of the Historic Environment (NRHE) which is maintained by Historic Environment Scotland (HES). The images aim to capture the everyday, the exceptional, the marginalised, the ignored and the undervalued within our industrial heritage.
The photographs were chosen for the exhibition as a result of a crowd sourcing exercise. Participants were invited to choose which words, feelings and emotions each of the images conjured up. Scotland was one of the world’s first industrialised nations but this extraordinary achievement was not widely studied or appreciated until relatively recently. In the post-industrial age, our legacy of industrial sites and places can appear a negative one, synonymous with decline, pollution and blight. With the passing of time, the way in which Scottish industry has shaped our communities and landscapes has even, in some places, been forgotten entirely.
A few of the industrial sites included here are protected because they have already been recognised as significant or historic, others have been recorded for their interest or rarity or because they were destined to disappear through demolition or decay. Some are still in operation and some long abandoned. The common theme which unites these industrial places is threat – they are all going to be changed, or lost.
The Snapshots of a Lost World: the Decline of Scottish Industry exhibition incidentally coincides with New Lanark’s spectacular immersive sound and large-scale light installation illumination projecting images onto New Lanark’s impressive building facades – ‘Shining Lives: Fortunes of Fate’ which takes place from the 11-13 October and 17-20 October.
Shining Lives is an innovative light and sound experience at New Lanark World Heritage Site brought to you by Double Take Projections, where the 230-year-old buildings are turned into screens for lights, colours, historic images and videos and will tell the story of a crew of Highlanders who set off on a brave voyage from Skye to North Carolina – and nearly didn’t live to tell the tale – find out how they ended up at New Lanark. The exhibition takes you on a journey of New Lanark’s past and overlaps with the Snapshots exhibition in many ways.
To find out more visit www.newlanark.org