University of Warwick: Emerging from Lockdown: The Coventry Grid Project 2021

A ground-breaking photographic project will chart the centre of Coventry as it emerges from the post-Covid lockdown.

Emerging from Lockdown: The Coventry Grid Project 2021 is a mass participation, map-based photographic survey of central Coventry – and it is looking for people to take part.

Open to all, the project will see local people chart a small area of Coventry city centre, capturing it as the Covid restrictions are lifted.

The resulting photographs will be exhibited online and an exhibition will be mounted at Warwick Arts Centre.

The city centre area covered by this project is small – less than one kilometre from Coventry Railway Station and spans the area from the Coventry Transport Museum in the north, the Cathedral and Herbert Art Gallery & Museum to the east, The Wave to the south and the retail market to the west.Dave Allen

The project has been guided by interviews with 25 people in Coventry city centre which took place in June 2021, in which they were asked about their loss of freedom and what their new-found liberty felt and looked like as they emerged out of lockdown and returned to the city.

Dave Allen, a photography and graphic design teacher is organising the project as part of the Resonate Festival, a year-long themed programme of public conversations, talks, exhibitions, film festivals, walking tours, debates and a family festival day organised by the University of Warwick, a principal partner in Coventry UK City of Culture 2021.

He said: “A photographic grid is a collaborative venture which aims to make a meaningful visual statement about an environment by adopting a systematic approach to bring to life what a place – in this case in Coventry – looks and feels like.

“We want members of the public who are interested in Coventry and possibly photography – but they certainly do not have to be photographers. The development of the smartphone has created photographers of all of us, and we want those to take part to represent that.”

People who are interested in taking part in the project are invited to free sessions this Saturday (10.30am and 2.30pm) at the Herbert Art Gallery & Museum in Jordan Well in Coventry city centre, and on August 7 at 10.30am at the Coventry Caribbean Association in Spon Street.

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