Back in December, HERE + NOW's Curatorial Director and co-founder Jenny Humberstone was asked to present her previous work activating stalled or vacant spaces in Australia at the Architecture + Design Scotland 'Stalled Spaces Seminar'. 

Jenny presented her work developing 'Secret Cinema', a series of outdoor cinema events in Melbourne and Brisbane, which worked with both local volunteers as part of the Urban Fabric collective, together with local businesses, artists and film-makers.  These vacant city spaces became catalysts for connection, activity and community through a variety of short film outdoor cinema events and exhibitions which brought together key stakeholders from the local area. 

Architecture + Design Scotland interviewed Jenny about what she had learnt from organising these Secret Cinema events and how this related to the Stalled Spaces initiative in Scotland.

Other highlights from the Stalled Spaces Seminar included Bobby Niven speaking about The Bothy Project and Walled Garden in Glasgow, and Andreas Lang of Public Works speaking about participatory methodologies and co-production in London.



Here + Now's Curatorial Director - Jenny Humberstone - is currently on location in the remote hills near Aviemore doing an artist residency with The Bothy Project.

Jenny is spending a week amidst this beautiful landscape in a small off-grid bothy, designed and built as one of three such structures across Scotland as part of The Bothy Project. Living in such a well-designed structure - which fulfils the necessary most basic needs to create a haven for simpler living - fire for warmth and cooking, shelter from the elements, a safe protected place to sleep - immediately surrounded by such stunning landscape away from the usual lights, bustle and noise of more urban places - drives a great deal of inspiration. A great place to contemplate the role of man-made intervention in the landscape, the relation of people to place and how the meanings and relationships we develop with a place (either individually or as a community) evolve over time, and the way modern digital instant of technologically dependent lifestyles inherently create a different outlook of the world compared to a more grounded experience of place. Plus of course, the immersive and inspiring experience of living within a landscape where you are much more acutely aware of every sound, from the distant rushing of the river to the owls at night, the movement of the heather and tree branches in the wind, and the greater impact the pattern of the light of day and moonlit darkness of night has on what you are able to do.

Jenny is working alongside her brother and musician Ian Humberstone at the bothy to create a primarily analogue photography series, field recordings and documentary film snippets. The result will be a short compiled film aiming to represent both their interpretation of the genius loci of this particular place, but also their subjective and contextual experience of their week.

More on the blog soon!