Evergreen at Control Room Bristol

Janine Partington Evergreen Control Room b

In the summer I thought – I’m not doing enough with all the fairs, stocking shops and galleries and oh, yes, starting a part-time MA this autumn – what else can I do? So I decided to apply for the Creative Spaces scheme that Bristol City Council run.

Through the Creative Spaces scheme Bristol City Council gives free space in an Edwardian Cloakroom and a Redcliffe Bridge Control Room to creatives to do with pretty much as they like for a week (though some rentals are longer).

There are some health and safety restrictions, but largely you are allowed to submit any idea and it is considered. I’d been doing some experimental work with scalpel cut line drawings and wanted to explore this further. To this end I submitted the idea for the ‘Evergreen’ installation. The idea was to turn the Control Room into a light box and illuminate the night with vignettes of pattern. The idea was accepted and the installation took place over a week in early December 2015.


The scheme I decided on was gradually scaled back due to practical and time considerations, and in consequence I wasn’t initially particularly happy with the end result. However, as I visited it each day to turn lights on and off in the morning and evening I grew to like it and find lots of points of interest that I now feel I can take forward.
Controlroom12x72There were a lot of creative considerations I had to make in creating the installation including taking into account the climatic conditions such as the dampness of the space and condensation during the day – there are also leaks in the roof. Because of this I decided to use tear resistant, waterproof Aquascribe paper and this brought its own limitations as I could only source A2 paper and the windows required larger pieces to cover them. This meant that I had to overlap pieces and create a repetitive pattern as part of the installation.

As well as the paper cuts in the windows facing the road, I produced a small number of leaf crowns which I lit with battery powered led lights. These were the part I most liked about the final installation and, in retrospect, would have filled the space with these. Maybe I will get the opportunity in the future.
Controlroom9x72Controlroom1I took lots of photographs of the installation from different angles at different times of the day, from both outside but also inside the space. Some of the images observed really reconciled me with the work I had produced and I look forward to exploring the ideas they threw at me in the future.