- Date: 22 October 2009
- Artform: Visual arts
- Area: North
Arts Council England and London 2012 announced today (Thursday 22 October) that artists' collective Owl Project, and north east based producer and musician Ed Carter have been selected as the north east winner of a £500,000 commission for Artists taking the lead, one of the major projects for the London 2012 Cultural Olympiad.
FLOW is an environmentally sustainable floating water-wheel and interactive artspace on the River Tyne. A floating millhouse alongside the water-wheel will contain a range of sensors, combining traditional and new technologies to monitor key environmental details, including water temperature and speed, salinity, and pollution. FLOW is in effect a musical instrument, powered by the tidal river and manipulated by the audience.
Entering the millhouse will be like entering a quirky turn of the century workshop, a workshop from a parallel universe where basic electronics, wood and water replace metal and steam. FLOW will avoid high powered computers, projectors and sub-bass sound systems, opting for springs, glass jars and local amplification.
FLOW is a musical instrument powered by the tidal river which when controlled by the audience will creak, groan and bubble.
It is proposed that various engagement programmes, workshops and exhibitions will take place in the run up to 2012. FLOW will be publicly exhibited between spring 2012 and September 2012.
FLOW is one of 12 commissions that will be realised across the UK over the next three years, each inspired by their location and celebrating the London 2012 Olympic and Paralympic Games. There is one commission for each of the nine English regions and the nations of Northern Ireland, Scotland and Wales.
Owl Project and Ed Carter's 'FLOW' was selected by an independent panel of artists and producers from the five projects shortlisted in August from a total of 83 regional entries.
Ed Carter said: 'We are amazed and honoured to be selected as the artists for this new work specific to the north east. Not only is it an incredible opportunity for us to expand our practice, but importantly for us to engage with a large audience and invite them to join us in questioning society's relationship with nature in a increasingly technological world.'
Owl Project said: 'Through FLOW we intend to explore the links between art, sustainability and technology, responding to the constantly changing nature of the River Tyne.
'We can't wait to get started on the project and look forward to the journey that FLOW is embarking on between now and 2012.'
Alison Clark-Jenkins, Director, Arts and Development, Arts Council England, North East said: 'We are thrilled to announce that Owl Project and Ed Carter's FLOW is the winning project in the north east. The project is of outstanding artistic quality and not only takes its inspiration from the region but also offers the chance for people from across the north east to really get involved and learn more about the River Tyne.
'It's been a really tough job for our panel of artists to choose a winner from the exceptional ideas that were submitted which truly demonstrated the vibrancy of arts in the region.'
London 2012 Chairman Sebastian Coe said: 'The winning commissions will be the catalyst for a truly national showcase of culture inspired by the London 2012 Olympic Games and Paralympic Games. Each project will explore the nation and region's creativity as part of a UK-wide celebration of London 2012.'