Memory, Stories and Senses is an ongoing resarch project led by Ben Ratclife, Module Coordinator – Lighting Design.
This project was part of an experiment that began many years ago with a devising workshop with the State of Space Theatre Company, which used a series of spaces that dictated physical vocal and emotional responses to create relationships with environments that participants carried into other spaces, synthesising characters and relationships with other participants characters. The work was heavily documented and used to develop a theatrical performance.
Last year’s Nest workshop moved this on to explore the role of environmental triggers in the creation or manipulation of stories, with participants being asked to use a personal object to start a narrative which they then took into a range of constructed environments with the aim of creating a narrative with form and content.
The workshop produced a variety of outcomes, although the number of participants limited their evidential weight.
For some it was an intensly emotional response “I sat in the woodland area and wanted to cry”
For others they revisited childhood memories and others created whole narrative strands based on the spaces and their responses alone.
For this year’s workshop we wanted to explore the relationship between the story and the environment, stimulating the creation of a story through memory stimulation
The work is immersive and honest, creating an environment where participants experience an elemental, deep and honest response unfiltered by the super-ego that allows an exploration of the sources of creativity, imagination and research.
The project allowed for a revelation of self in context and could be used for the following: Acting, Design, Directing, Contextual studies and research and unpacking stories.
The environment allowed for an exploration of the relationship between their environmental stimuli from a wide variety of view points much like in Calvino’s Invisible Cities.
The collaborative relationship of the workshop leaders allowed not only for synergy but different perspectives on project and outcomes.