Federation House Residency: Shred Project

Monday 11th November I started a six month residency at Federation House in Manchester. This is part of an ongoing New Arts Spaces scheme by Castlefield Gallery to utilise empty buildings in Manchester for artistic projects. Federation House is a seven floor office building owned, yet vacated,  by the Cooperative.

Federation House (From Dantzig Street)

Federation House (From Dantzig Street)

The vision is to create a large scale installation consisting of piles, circles, blocks (to be decided) of shredded printed materials such as books, magazines, maps, documents.

Other research in the space will involve creating 3D shred sculptures and 2D shred collages.  I want to research what it might mean to translate text into non-textual forms.

I will explore specific issues with more emotionally charged texts such as the Bible, works of Freud, Shakespeare etc. How might a viewer respond to a shredded bible? Can I claim this is a translation? Or is it a transliteration? Or just destruction? What is the authority of a text? Is one book more powerful than another? Why? In this age of digital text, is there still a taboo against destroying books? Personally I still feel a certain resistance to destroying even an out of date book. Interesting areas for reflection.

Shred Dance

Another dimension of the project could be to include dance/physical theatre. This could be a live performance or a video piece. I imagine dancers interacting with piles of shredded paper; the dancers shredding paper, creating piles of it, picking it up, moving with it.

I will also use my time in the space to research dancers and video options.

Preparing the Space

Fist job was to pull up all the Lino.

Open plan space and my 'office' door

Open plan space and my ‘office’ door


The ‘office’ residency space 

Clear floorboards and first piles of shred

Clear floorboards and first piles of shred



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