The residency is completed and the project has changed how I experience my local environment hugely and I hope that it will help others to think differently about seaweed, microbiology and the Living Coast. The journey has been hard, I but worthwhile, there was so much research to be done and I wanted to give it my all, despite it being a very short residency.
The next step is that I am pleased to announce that I am working on a series of marker sculptures on Brighton beach near Black Rock, with collaborator Alex May. In the first of these sculptures we will use photogrammetry scans of seaweed from the area to tell the story of Mary Philadelphia Merrifield and talk about the natural history of the area. The sculptures will also have augmented reality elements.
In the future I want to explore how I can take this research forward to develop new artworks or bodies of work. The issues of climate change and of agar security are very important, and reflecting on how seaweed collecting changed opportunities for women who wanted to work scientifically in the Victorian era and the situation of women in science globally. I welcome contacts from scientific collaborators, curators and producers as well as art or science historians/theorists in the field.
Finally I want to give a huge thanks to Liz Whitehead and Laura London at Fabrica Gallery for supporting this project and to Sarah Stewart, Jane Freeman, Kerrie Davies, John Paul, Stephen Forsythe and Ella Garrud for participating in interviews for the blog.