This is a partnership project with the University of Nottingham’s Mixed Reality Lab. PHD researcher Roma Patel is exploring Digital Technologies used by older adults and conductive materials that can be linked up to circuit boards to create some playful results. Roma will be drawing upon inspiration from self-taught artist Joseph Cornell who produced work in the 1950’s and 60’s.
Cornell’s most characteristic art works were boxed assemblages created from found objects. These are simple shadow boxes, usually fronted with a glass pane, in which he arranged eclectic fragments of photographs or Victorian bric a brac. Many of his boxes, such as the famous Medici Slot Machine boxes, are interactive and are meant to be handled.
Initial workshops with residents from Abbeyfield Care Home in Sherwood and Nottinghamshire Hospice will engage residents with pre-made boxes consisting of a range of objects, a camera and drawing materials as way of stimulating ideas and getting to know individuals better. This will be the starting point where feelings, experience about art, technology and cultural activities and a better understanding of people’s preferences shape the work that follows.
A series of creative workshops will follow that explore crafted objects such as knitting, sewing and felt making; with the addition of digital technology and making of boxes that will be based on a range of themes that resonate with each individual.
As far as we know this work hasn’t been tried out in this way before with older people and its playfulness and innovation should produce some exciting results !