Demolition, Deconstruction and Digging

Mark Foley worked with Shape East recently, when they ran the third in their series of Kettle's Yard workshops, using guest professionals to bring to life built environment topics for primary and secondary schools.  

The Space Makers Project follows the building process of the new Education Wing at Kettle's Yard, Cambridge. Over a two-year period, Kettle's Yard are working with two schools, two artists, Shape East and project evaluators Flow Associates. The project will see the artists work to creatively develop the knowledge and skills of the young people in the fields of architecture and the built environment. Different built environment professionals will be involved in each session, to support the artists and provide their professional expertise.

In March, the Comberton Village College BTEC Art and Design pupils met with Mark Foley to delve into the world of demolition and deconstruction, led by artist Raksha Patel.  They discovered how buildings are demolished and the emotive response felt by those experiencing the sight of a demolished building as well as the demolishers. These were linked to artists such as Gordon Matta-Clark (Anarchitecture), Do Huh So and Mike Nelson.  Video clips of 1960’s tower blocks being demolished in the 70’s and 80’s introduced the young people to the awe surrounding the act of demolition leading to the impact that the footage of the Twin Towers made on the world. The pupils led their own deconstruction session, tearing, scrunching, cutting, taping, reforming, drawing and re-assembling. They created sculpture, which others destroyed and recreated to explore issues of transformation, fragmentation and meaning.