StoryCubes

playful cubes for storytelling, brainstorming ideas or playing games in three dimensions

Community & Events

Diffusion engaging with the community, online and out in the world.

Residencies

an ongoing programme enabling residents at Proboscis studio to create eBooks and StoryCubes for their own projects.

Learning, Schools & Education

eBooks & StoryCubes created for learning and educational purposes

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Browse the collection of Diffusion Shareables: eBooks & StoryCubes

Articles tagged with: Community & Events

Home » Community & Events, Community Projects, eBooks, One-Off Shareables
Greenhill eBooks by Gillian Cowell
Submitted by on July 14, 2010 – 8:00 am4 Comments

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Greenhill Digital Storytelling Guide A4 | US Letter PDF 300Kb
Summary of Activities 2009 and plans for 2010 A4 | US Letter PDF 530Kb
A March Back in Time with the Pipers of Allandale A4 | US Letter PDF 96oKb

AboutGreenhill Digital Storytelling Guide: This is a short guide to community research and how the digital story is formed. It details some handy hints about how you identify interviewees, writing your interview questions and how you actually build a historical digital “story”. These stories can be really engaging because they mix images with a real experience of life in a particular community. They can also be shared really easily and are very cheap to produce if you don’t have much of a budget. You can record interviews and combine the voice with digital images from archives or images of objects that have meaning, to create something really visual and emotional.

Summary of Activities 2009 and plans for 2010: This booklet details the Greenhill Historical Society’s wandering and exploring. A “village” situated in Bonnybridge, Greenhill has experienced a significant amount of upheaval and change over the last century. Most recently, hundreds of new and expensive houses have been built on vast tracts of greenbelt; mineral industry, predominantly mining, is all but gone. We’re interested in what this means for the area now. If Greenhill will never be as great as it once was, what does that mean for us? We hope that by exploring the derelict, the hidden, the new, the old, the stories of new and old residents we can come up with a new definition for this place.
A March Back in Time with the Pipers of Allandale: This project retraces the story of one remarkable family’s wartime sacrifice and the heroic journey taken by four brothers during the Second World War. Greenhill Historical Society created a weekend programme of events so that others could share their discoveries – a talk, a play, a walk, an exhibition, and a daffodil tea – as well as a chance to engage in debate about the issues it generated. This booklet contains a summary of the project as well as smaller versions of the exhibition and printed materials for you to view.

Published July 2010

Gillian Cowell is a community worker and researcher based in Bonnybridge, Stirlingshire, and a doctoral student at the University of Stirling exploring civic learning and the construction of public space. Her research interests include public sphere and public space theory towards a better understanding of community education as public education. She is involved in exploring derelict and historical spaces of post-industrial communities with residents, and how these spaces transform into public and political sites, revealing and reigniting debate about contemporary challenges.

Tags: bookleteer, Community & Events, Gillian Cowell, Greenhill Historical Society, local history, memory

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Home » Community Projects, Dodolab, eBooks, eNotebooks, Learning, Schools & Education
Kitchener African Canadian Workshop by DodoLab
Submitted by on June 30, 2010 – 1:25 pm2 Comments


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Kitchener Field NoteBook A4 | US Letter PDF 280Kb
AC Youth Workshop Book 1 : Kitchener Market  A4 | US Letter PDF 8Mb
AC Youth Workshop Book 2 : Victoria Park  A4 | US Letter PDF 9.5Mb
AC Youth Workshop Book 3 : Interview with the Mayor A4 | US Letter PDF 4.5Mb

About : A youth workshop developed by DodoLab in collaboration with The African Canadian Association of Waterloo Region and the Healthy Communities Research Network. The workshop took place on June 25, 26 & 28 2010, in Kitchener Ontario with participants from the African Canadian Youth Leadership Project.

A field notebook was designed for the workshop participants by DodoLab and three eBooks were created by the participants in the workshop.

Published June 2010

DodoLab is an art and design based program that employs experimental and adaptive processes to spark positive change and resiliency. We work collaboratively with a diversity of emergent thinkers/doers to imaginatively and critically repurpose familiar tools of the social sciences, marketing and activism to engage with the public in public. Our focus is the complex relationships between people and their surroundings and how communities define, and are defined by, their environment. DodoLab puts the creative process at the heart of confronting social and environmental challenges.

Tags: african, bookleteer, canada, Community & Events, Dodolab, engagement, health, workshop, youth

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Home » Dodolab, eBooks
DodoLab: Island Stories Book 1 by Andrew Hunter & Paula Jean Cowan
Submitted by on May 24, 2010 – 10:49 am3 Comments

Download A4 | US Letter PDF 2Mb

About : One of a series of publications to be produced by DodoLab as part of their ongoing work in Prince Edward Island (Canada). This book features text and photos by Andrew Hunter of a new work (a hand-made dodo bird made from recycled sweaters) by artist Paula Jean Cowan. The bird is documented at various locations on the island and the text introduces the core focus of DodoLab’s PEI work and the emerging explorations of concepts of islands as physical, cultural and social spaces.

Published May 2010

Andrew Hunter is Director of DodoLab and Adjunct Faculty and Researcher at Waterloo Architecture Cambridge (University of Waterloo). DodoLab is an arts-based creative research program that employs experimental and adaptive processes to spark positive change and resiliency. Led by Andrew Hunter with Lisa Hirmer, DodoLab’s focus is the complex relationships between people and their surroundings and how communities define, and are defined by, their environment. DodoLab puts the creative process at the heart of confronting social and environmental challenges and exploring barriers to adaptation and resiliency. DodoLab is based in Cambridge, Ontario, and is a program of Musagetes and Waterloo Architecture.

Paula Jean Cowan has been a bakery clerk, deli-girl, grocery clerk, produce manager, accounts receivable clerk, bookkeeper, receptionist, children’s art instructor, buyer & seller of used books, print & photo technician, truck washer, auto assembly line worker, parts inspector, and switchboard operator. Based in Sackville, New Brunswick, she produces work in a variety of media with an emphasis on teh hand-made that extends into her animated video works. Cowan has an MFA from the University of Guelph.

*** made with bookleteer.com ***

Tags: Andrew Hunter, bookleteer, Community & Events, Dodolab, environment, Paula Jean Cowan

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Home » Community Projects, Dodolab, eBooks
Cemetery Litmus Test by Andrew Hunter
Submitted by on May 15, 2010 – 8:59 amNo Comment

Download A4 | US Letter PDF 8.3Mb

About : One of a series of publications to be produced by DodoLab as part of their ongoing work in Windsor/Detroit in collaboration with Broken City Lab, Green Corridor and the Tug Collective. This publication is the first in a series related to a community research project called Cemetery Litmus Test led by DodoLab Director Andrew Hunter. The goal of the project is to explore the old tombstones and cemeteries in Windsor (Canada) and Detroit (USA) that are close to the Ambassador Bridge, one of the primary trade and transport links between Canada and the United States. DodoLab is interested in looking at the excessive decay of old tombstones as signs of air born pollution in the region. The Cemetery Litmus Test is one of a number of projects DodoLab will be running and/or collaborating on in Windsor/Detroit over the coming years.

Published May 2010

Andrew Hunter is Director of DodoLab and Adjunct Faculty and Researcher at Waterloo Architecture Cambridge (University of Waterloo). DodoLab is an arts-based creative research program that employs experimental and adaptive processes to spark positive change and resiliency. Led by Andrew Hunter with Lisa Hirmer, DodoLab’s focus is the complex relationships between people and their surroundings and how communities define, and are defined by, their environment. DodoLab puts the creative process at the heart of confronting social and environmental challenges and exploring barriers to adaptation and resiliency. DodoLab is based in Cambridge, Ontario, and is a program of Musagetes and Waterloo Architecture.

Andrew Hunter continues to also work as an artist, writer, independent curator and educator. He has produced exhibitions, site projects, publications and writings for institutions across Canada in the United States and Europe. He has produced a distinct body of work on Canadian art and culture consistently emphasizing a broader vision embracing social and environmental issues and exploring nationalism, myths and popular culture. Collaboration has been central to Hunter’s practice for many years as his projects regularly include the commissioned and collaborative contributions of other creative practitioners, students and family members.

*** made with bookleteer.com ***

Tags: cemetery, Community & Events, Dodolab, pollution, research, tombstones, Windsor

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Home » Community Projects, eBooks, Empty Shops Projects
Empty Shops Workbook by Dan Thompson
Submitted by on February 27, 2010 – 8:44 amOne Comment

Download A4 | US Letter PDF 2.1Mb

About : A practical, step-by-step guide to using empty spaces for arts and community projects – and while empty shops are a focus, the skills can be applied to other temporary and meanwhile projects. Produced by the Empty Shops Network with support from the Meanwhile Project and a-n magazine.

Published as a Diffusion eBook February 2010

Dan Thompson is an artist and writer with an interest in using redundant spaces which has taken in theatres, cinemas and empty shops. He has written widely about empty shops for arts and regeneration magazines. he is founder of the Revolutionary Arts Group and the Empty Shops Network.

*** made with bookleteer.com ***

Tags: art, bookleteer, collaboration, Community & Events, Dan Thompson, empty shops, entrepreneurship, urbanism

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    Social comments and analytics for this post... This post was mentioned on Twitter by proboscisstudio: new on #diffusion: Empty Shops Workbook ...
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Home » Community & Events, Events, Publishing on Demand
Pitch Up & Publish
Submitted by on September 21, 2009 – 12:41 pm4 Comments

Starting in October we will be running regular informal evening workshops for people to literally pitch up and publish using bookleteer.com. Initially these will be held at our Clerkenwell Studio for up to 15 participants – all you need is a laptop and some content (text /photos/ drawings etc) you’d like to create and share as eBooks or StoryCubes (shareables). We will provide free user accounts to bookleteer and guide you through the steps of preparing and generating your shareables to share online, via email or as physical publications. Once created you can publish them on your own website or, if appropriate, we can publish them on Diffusion.

The first workshop will be held during the week beginning October 12th 2009 (date tbc) between 6.30-9pm.
To reserve a place please email us at diffusion (at) proboscis.org.uk
Participants will be asked to make small donation to cover materials and refreshments.

Click to continue reading “Pitch Up & Publish”

Tags: Community & Events, creative writing, eBooks, Generator, public authoring, Publishing on Demand, StoryCubes, workshop

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Home » Community Projects, Dodolab, eBooks, eNotebooks
DodoLab Wants to Know: What Are The Signs of a Creative City?
Submitted by on September 9, 2009 – 9:00 am3 Comments

DodoLab_Creative_City_cover2

Download A4 | US Letter PDF 575Kb

Update 20/10/2009: a modified eBook has been prepared that can be used in any location.
Download A4 | US Letter PDF 438Kb

About : This eBook has been produced as a collaborative field research tool for DodoLab’s community research at the 2009 ICASP Colloquium (Improvisation, Community and Social Practice - www.improvcommunity.ca) and Jazz Festival in Guelph, Ontario, Canada. DodoLab is interested in exploring the idea of the Creative City and this eBook is designed to engage colloquium participants and festival goers in the process of identifying and documenting what they individually consider to be “signs” of a Creative City. Participants will use this ebook to describe signs and their locations and these will then be used by a team of DodoLab photographers to produce a series of photo essays that will be published as eBooks. Like other tools developed by DodoLab, this ebook can be easily modified for other locations.

September 2009

DodoLab is a dynamic and experimental co-creative lab for engaging with communities, organizations and events that is collaborative and fluid. Based at the University of Waterloo’s School of Architecture (Canada) and lead by Andrew Hunter in collaboration with  Musagetes Foundation (Canada), DodoLab brings together creative researchers/practitioners, community leaders, educators and students to challenge accepted ideas, assumptions and methodologies and to develop insights into contexts, processes and situations. DodoLab is not a predetermined package, program or methodology, it is a process-based exploration that emerges out of the needs, challenges, concerns and ideas of the communities, organizations, groups and institutions we collaborate with and draws its strength from the rich combination of skills, knowledge and experience these collaborations contain. The environment, youth, knowledge sharing, leadership, social innovation and community are central concerns of DodoLab and our philosophy of cultivating true collaboration and co-creation reflects the firm belief that we cannot solve the complex problems we face if we don’t work together with openness and respect. DodoLab looks to build relationships with its collaborators that are meaningful and lasting and that emphasize shared responsibilities for action and learning.
DodoLab’s current principal researchers are:  Andrew Hunter, Lisa Hirmer, Laura Knapp, Barbara Hobot and Proboscis.

*** made with www.bookleteer.com ***

Tags: Andrew Hunter, bookleteer, Community & Events, creative cities, Dodolab, improvisation, jazz, public engagement

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  • October Newsletter | Proboscis
    [...] DodoLab Wants to Know: What Are The Signs of a Creative City? http://diffusion.org.uk/?p=1352 [...]
    Comment posted on 11-2-2009 at 15:53
  • Virginia DWI Attorney
    There is a big probability that DodoLab could be a great help for improving a city through the help of ...
    Comment posted on 10-5-2009 at 13:47
  • Dodolab » Blog Archive » Jazz Festival & ICASP Colloquium Day 2
    [...] We’ve been turning out a number of survey projects in response to the panels, presentations and performances and encouraging ...
    Comment posted on 9-10-2009 at 19:40

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Home » Community Projects, Dodolab, eBooks, eNotebooks
Dodolab Wants To Know
Submitted by on August 3, 2009 – 11:08 amOne Comment

DodoLabQuestionsBook_cover DodoLabQuestionsBookSP_cover

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English Version A4 | US Letter PDF 5ooKb
Spanish Version A4 | US Letter PDF 5ooKb

About DodoLab Wants To Know is a community research tool which asks a series of simple questions designed to encourage reflection on the things that we have lost due to cultural, social and environmental change and what we’d like to bring back. This simple tool is meant to both collect information and encourage dialogue within communities and across generations. To use one of these books is to join the DodoLab research team and we encourage those who use them to share their findings with DodoLab (www.dodolab.ca).

Published August 2009

DodoLab is a dynamic and experimental co-creative lab for engaging with communities, organizations and events that is collaborative and fluid. A shared initiative of Render (University of Waterloo, Canada) and the Musagetes Foundation (Canada), DodoLab brings together creative researchers/practitioners, community leaders, educators and students to challenge accepted ideas, assumptions and methodologies and to develop insights into contexts, processes and situations. DodoLab is not a predetermined package, program or methodology, it is a process-based exploration that emerges out of the needs, challenges, concerns and ideas of the communities, organizations, groups and institutions we collaborate with and draws its strength from the rich combination of skills, knowledge and experience these collaborations contain. The environment, youth, knowledge sharing, leadership, social innovation and community are central concerns of DodoLab and our philosophy of cultivating true collaboration and co-creation reflects the firm belief that we cannot solve the complex problems we face if we don’t work together with openness and respect. DodoLab looks to build relationships with its collaborators that are meaningful and lasting and that emphasize shared responsibilities for action and learning. DodoLab is led by Andrew Hunter (RENDER). Probsocis continues to be a valued partner of RENDER’s and a significant contributor to the DodoLab initiative.

Tags: Andrew Hunter, change, Community & Events, Dodolab, Render

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Home » Community Projects, eBooks, eNotebooks, Learning, Schools & Education, Residencies
Kedu? scanned eNotebooks by children of Umologho
Submitted by on February 9, 2009 – 8:21 amNo Comment

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Kedu – eBook 1 A4 only PDF 644Kb
Kedu - eBook 2 A4 only PDF 608Kb
Kedu - eBook 3 A4only PDF 649Kb
Kedu - eBook 4 A4 only PDF 650Kb
Kedu - eBook 5 A4 only PDF 632Kb

About : eBooks help to promote ongoing communication between students in Umulogho Village, Nigeria and students in Watford schools.

Bev Carter’s eBook A Little Something About Me (generated by with support from Proboscis) was used to assist a series of workshops in six schools in Watford during 2008 to communicate through words, paintings and photographs the life, experiences and interests of students attending a secondary school in Umulogho, a rural village in Imo State, Nigeria, West Africa.

During school workshops copies of this eBook were handed out to the students and a discussion was encouraged and facilitated by Bev. The pupils really liked the eBook and it served to generate more curiosity and questions about life in Umulogho. As part of the process another eBook created to capture all the thoughts and enquries the students had.

The next eBook was called ‘Kedu?‘ This means ‘How are you? in Igbo, the main language spoken in Umulogho Village. This was a collection of further questions from students in Watford using pictures created by Umulogho students to give them added visual interest. In July 2008 copies of the ‘Kedu’ eBook were hand delivered to Umulogho Village by Tony Amaechi, a Trustee of Friends Out There, and some Umulogho Village students then filled in their response to the questions in the eBook. Five eBooks were collected by Tony on his return to the UK and some students told Tony that they had enjoyed filling in the eBooks, were thrilled to see their paintings scanned in to them and were happy to know that students in the UK were interested in them, their dreams and concerns.

In October 2008 the completed Kedu eBooks were taken back to some of the schools in Watford that had asked the original questions. The students were amazed and pleased to see they really had been given some answers to their questions, such as ‘are there any crocodiles in the village stream? – some Umologho students had seen some and others hadn’t. The eBooks got the Watford students talking about what time they wake up in the morning and what they do before school as most students in Umulogho were awake by 5.30 am and had gone to the village stream and back to collect water before going to school. The Kedu eBooks also gave the Umulogo students a space to ask some questions that they had for the Watford students such as ‘what seasons do you have in England?’ and ‘what religions do you have?’

The next stage will be to create another eBook to continue the communication between the schools in Umulogho and Watford. The eBook is an excellent resource for schools: students like the pocket sized feel, it’s a great way to capture conversations and enquiries and, even though the school in Umulogho Village doesn’t yet have a computer or internet access, we were still able to send and receive paper copies – using more traditional means of connection and communication.

Bev Carter
February 2009

For more information please contact Bev Carter (Friends Out There)

Published February 2009

Tags: Bev Carter, collaboration, Community & Events, education, learning, Nigeria, notebook

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Home » eBooks, Short Work
Magna Carta
Submitted by on February 4, 2009 – 7:26 pmNo Comment

magna_carta_cover

Download A4 | US Letter PDF 390Kb

About : Magna Carta is commonly perceived to be the foundation of English rights and liberties, but in fact was a legal charter forcing King John to concede rights, follow legal procedures and agree to be bound by the law, mainly for his barons’ benefit. The 1297 version remains in law in England and Wales and guarantees these rights for all “freemen” – most notably the writ of habeus corpus. Magna Carta is often cited as a milestone on the development of English common law, constitutional law and the US Constitution.

First Published 1215
Sourced from The Constitution Society

Tags: Community & Events, constitution, democracy, law, rights

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Home » Publishing on Demand, Transformations
Transformations
Submitted by on November 21, 2008 – 4:08 pmNo Comment

why are we who we are?  what do we want to become?

Transformations is the latest series of Diffusion commissions curated by Proboscis. Proboscis is commissioning a diverse range of writers, artists, performers, thinkers and makers to respond to two questions from different perspectives, why are we who we are? and, what do we want to become?

As we get into the swing of the 21st Century our notions of identity, personal and societal, are subject to new arrays of emerging pressures and responsibilities. Our aspirations for change and growth are being re-thought as we grapple with the growing awareness of environmental changes which may already be beyond our control. How have we reached this point? Where do we go from here?

Transformations seeks to address these fluid notions of identity and aspiration by commissioning works that subtly reflect on individual identities, urban identity and pharmaceutical, biological and technological interventions. Over the next few years we will be inviting selected contributors to add their voices into this mix – through essays and artists books (eBooks) as well as in three dimensions (StoryCubes).

Add Your Voice
For the first time we are experimenting with a new approach to selecting works for this series – publishing as a conversation. Readers are invited to submit their own proposals for the series (through the comments section of this site) – we will provide accounts for the Diffusion Generator (soon to be re-launched as Bookleteer) for readers to become authors and create their own eBooks or StoryCubes,  the best of which we will publish as contributions to the series. We are not asking for quick responses, but for measured and considered contributions to the series – putting an eBook or a set of StoryCubes together is significant creative act. Get in touch if you are inspired by the works we have selected and published so far and have a proposal for a work of your own.

The Contributions

Sponsorship Opportunity
We are seeking a sponsor for Transformations who shares our ethos of collaboration, public authoring and creating cultures of listening. Please contact us for more information.

Tags: architecture, Community & Events, conversation, environment, fiction, identity, listening, poetry, social commentary, sustainability, urbanism

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Home » eBooks
Perception Peterborough – blocks of change by Proboscis
Submitted by on October 28, 2008 – 2:54 pmNo Comment

Download A4 only PDF 2.9Mb

AboutBlocks of Change takes a look at the brick industry in Peterborough and how it changed the landscape and social make-up of the city. It is one of three eBooks created by Proboscis as part of a pack of ‘Impressions’ of the city, its people and environment for the Perception Peterborough project. Blocks of Change was created and designed by Karen Martin.

Perception Peterborough is a dynamic and creative visioning project which brought together key local representatives with creative thinkers to develop innovative approaches to the challenges and opportunities facing Peterborough. Proboscis was commissioned to develop and lead a series of creative workshops alongside consultants Haring Woods Associates

Published September 2008

Proboscis is a non-profit, artist-led creative studio based in London, UK. The team working on Perception Peterborough were: Alice Angus, Niharika Hariharan, Matt Huynh, Giles Lane, Karen Martin, Carmen Vela Maldonado and Orlagh Woods.

Tags: anarchaeology, architecture, Community & Events, creative cities, environment, Karen Martin, landscape, listening, mapping, Perception Peterborough, Proboscis, public engagement, sustainability

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Perception Peterborough – lines of mobility by Proboscis
Submitted by on October 28, 2008 – 2:47 pmOne Comment

Download A4 only PDF 2.6Mb

About : Lines of Mobility is a brief exploration of the role that the railways played in shaping the social, environmental and spatial landscape of Peterborough. It is one of three eBooks created by Proboscis as part of a pack of ‘Impressions’ of the city, its people and environment for the Perception Peterborough project. Lines of Mobility was created and designed by Karen Martin.

Perception Peterborough is a dynamic and creative visioning project which brought together key local representatives with creative thinkers to develop innovative approaches to the challenges and opportunities facing Peterborough. Proboscis was commissioned to develop and lead a series of creative workshops alongside consultants Haring Woods Associates

Published September 2008

Proboscis is a non-profit, artist-led creative studio based in London, UK. The team working on Perception Peterborough were: Alice Angus, Niharika Hariharan, Matt Huynh, Giles Lane, Karen Martin, Carmen Vela Maldonado and Orlagh Woods.

Tags: anarchaeology, architecture, Community & Events, creative cities, culture, environment, history, Karen Martin, landscape, listening, mapping, memory, mobility, Perception Peterborough, Proboscis, public engagement, sustainability

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  • Perception Peterborough | metaspectiveblog
    [...] can also download the beautiful eBooks created by Proboscis as part of the impressions here. Share this:TwitterFacebookLike this:Like [...]
    Comment posted on 5-13-2013 at 12:57

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Perception Peterborough – bus adventures by Proboscis
Submitted by on October 28, 2008 – 1:00 pmNo Comment

Download A4 only PDF 2.9Mb

About : Bus Adventures traces a series of journeys taken by bus through Peterborough and its villages chatting to locals, taking images and recording sounds. It is one of three eBooks created by Proboscis as part of a pack of ‘Impressions’ of the city, its people and environment for the Perception Peterborough project. Bus Adventures was designed and created by Orlagh Woods with Karen Martin. 

Perception Peterborough is a dynamic and creative visioning project which brought together key local representatives with creative thinkers to develop innovative approaches to the challenges and opportunities facing Peterborough. Proboscis was commissioned to develop and lead a series of creative workshops alongside consultants Haring Woods Associates

Published September 2008

Proboscis is a non-profit, artist-led creative studio based in London, UK. The team working on Perception Peterborough were: Alice Angus, Niharika Hariharan, Matt Huynh, Giles Lane, Karen Martin, Carmen Vela Maldonado and Orlagh Woods.

Tags: anarchaeology, Community & Events, creative cities, environment, Karen Martin, landscape, listening, mapping, Orlagh Woods, Perception Peterborough, Proboscis, public engagement, sustainability

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Home » Learning, Schools & Education, Residencies
Lisa Hunter – Diffusion Residency, July 2008
Submitted by on September 14, 2008 – 2:16 amNo Comment

Diffusion Residency with Proboscis, July 2008
Lisa Hunter
Collections Manager, Dundas Museum and Archives
Dundas, Ontario, Canada.

In my curatorial work with the Dundas Museum and Archives, I work with a local history collection, within the environment of a supportive local community, to produce exhibitions and related programming.  At the heart of my curatorial approach is the concept of storytelling, and most of my projects have been based on some form of information exchange with members of the community.  The primary goal of my residency with Proboscis was to explore ways in which I could build on the most successful aspects of these projects, and to develop additional and alternative approaches to the exchange and presentation of historical material.  Specifically, I wanted to learn how I might incorporate eBooks and StoryCubes into the work that I do at the museum, and to see how these tools might lead to new programs or projects.

The best approach for me was to begin by “jumping right in” and producing an eBook.  The technical and intellectual process of making my first eBook became a way of thinking through how I might use the eBooks (and StoryCubes) at the Dundas Museum.  Additionally, having the opportunity to speak at length with Giles, and other members of Proboscis, about the many innovative and creative ways in which the Generator has been used by others, was a very significant aspect of this residency.  Being in the studio, and being able to share ideas and to have an open exchange, was invaluable.  Further, having the opportunity to put some distance between myself and the museum allowed me to see things a bit more objectively, which is often difficult to do when you are in the thick of the day to day work.

I think the greatest benefit of this residency was that it resulted in a definite shift in my thinking about how a museum can interact with, and respond to, the community it serves.  My approach has always been to encourage dialogue between the museum and the public, but the tools for doing so in an informal yet elegant way have been missing.  Consequently, those efforts to facilitate exchange have been sporadic.  Those of us who work in smaller museums can often feel very limited in our ability to disseminate ideas, partly because of a longstanding tradition of thematically narrow, expensive and poorly distributed publishing ventures.  The Generator, conversely, allows for spontaneous, experimental, low cost initiatives that can be distributed more widely than was ever possible.  I think that our future success as a museum will depend on our ability to continue and deepen an ongoing exchange with our local community, and that the eBooks and StoryCubes are excellent tools for us in this regard.

Although the actual residency was for a one week period, I feel that my work with it is just beginning.  Not only have I spent quite a bit of time thinking about how past projects might have been enhanced or done differently with the utilization of the Generator tools, but I have also been developing a number of future initiatives, in consultation with other members of the museum staff.  While it seems that the eBooks and StoryCubes will need some time to become an automatic part of our curatorial “toolbox,” (i.e. to become a part of our organizational culture), there is a lot of enthusiasm and interest within the organization at this time.  There are currently two eBooks under development, and a plan in place to create a StoryCube set for a senior citizens’ education program in the coming weeks. Other uses are also being considered for future projects.

The residency with Proboscis was an extremely useful, thought-provoking, energizing experience, and I feel very privileged to have been invited to take part.  The new insights I gained are being shared with my colleagues at the museum, and I am hopeful that it will be the basis for a new, creative approach that will permeate our organization.  Working with Proboscis has been very inspiring, and has given me a fresh enthusiasm for pursing my curatorial goals.

The eBooks

Button Doll
Despair
Forget Me Not

Tags: collecting, Community & Events, education, Lisa Hunter, local history, outreach, Residencies, storytelling

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Home » Community & Events, Community Projects, eNotebooks, Events
Using eBooks for a treasure hunt as part of a consultative process by Kevin Harris
Submitted by on July 1, 2008 – 6:42 pm2 Comments

I’ve been working recently with Bradford Libraries (West Yorkshire, England) on a few small community engagement projects. They have received funding under the Community Libraries Programme to extend and refurbish the library at Manningham. In June 2008 I was asked to run a public event in the library to engage people with the process and open up a period of consultation.

The intention was to have a two hour early evening slot, with the architect and plans available, plus members of staff of course, but no set programme. So the first condition was to design a consultation event where people are constantly coming and going, but you want to attract their attention, inform them, provoke thinking and capture their views.

The idea of a treasure hunt as a fun way to generate interest quickly became the key component of the event. Working with library staff I developed a set of clues which would require users to go to specific locations in and around the building. The planned extension will be built over part of an existing car park and a community garden will be designed alongside, so we had the chance with the treasure hunt to help people visualise it. I was pretty sure that the Diffusion eBooks would be the ideal mechanism for linking clues to further suggestions and comments.

Here’s how it worked. Visitors were given an eBook, with the first clue printed on the first page. Each clue required the hunter to go to a specific location, inside or outside the library building, where they would find the next clue printed on a set of peel-off labels. They took one of these labels and stuck it onto a space on a new page in the eBook.

We provided space on each page for hunters to write an answer to each clue. Additionally there was a supplementary consultative question, designed to solicit ideas and suggestions for the new building.

So for example, the second clue asked “Where will the disabled parking spaces be?” This required checking the site plans, with the architect on hand to help work out the answer. The hunter then had to pop outside to the specific location, where friendly staff held a folder of labels for clue 3. If necessary, users were shown where the label should be placed in their eBook. The supplementary question asked: “What else is needed to make sure that disabled people have good access to the new library?”

At the location of the answer to the final clue, users found a note saying “Well done! You’ve finished the treasure hunt – please go back to the start and collect your prize.”

We anticipated that some users would rather get on with the hunt, and then perhaps settle down afterwards to write comments in answer to the questions. In practice, we found that most took this course and staff were on hand to encourage and support comment. Nonetheless, it was obvious that a number of hunters lacked confidence writing in the English language and were reluctant to offer any comments. Aware of this, staff engaged most of them in conversation and anyway it didn’t matter – they were in the library, taking part, willingly engaged and ready to contribute in other ways.

What worked well
The treasure hunt clues and the eBooks were developed remotely, with staff locally printing out the eBooks and, never having encountered them before, making them up a day or two in advance. As always, one or two showed greater dexterity than others, but it was done. I travelled to Bradford on the day of the event knowing that the documentation was ready.

In terms of helping to guide people through the treasure hunt process, the eBooks worked flawlessly. No-one got lost or did the clues in the wrong order. And no-one got into any difficulty with the sticking of labels: every one was placed in the right place on the right page.

We printed some eBooks on A3, giving a page format of around 21 x 15cm. These proved more popular and suited being carried around for 15-30 minutes, allowing plenty of space for notes.

What I’d do differently
We had the smaller eBooks printed on yellow paper, but ideally I’d like to introduce some colour in other ways and the obvious place to do this is with the sticky labels.

A key point
It’s important not to see this as an engagement technique in a vacuum. If we did, we wouldn’t get results. We ran this exercise while the library was open, with staff having conversations with users, an SMS option for comments, and other opportunities for people to get involved in the decision-making process. The eBooks fit perfectly in the treasure hunt and the treasure hunt is just one component in an ongoing mix of engagement activities and processes.

Kevin Harris
June 2008

Read Kevin’s post on his Neighbourhoods blog.

Tags: Community & Events, conversation, eNotebook, language, Library, public engagement, treasure hunt

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  • Kevin Harris: eBook Treasure Hunt | bookleteer blog
    [...] this post on diffusion.org.uk Kevin writes that the eBook Treasure Hunt worked well and no-one had difficulty [...]
    Comment posted on 8-18-2010 at 08:03
  • Business trainer bruce
    This is a brilliant idea. Simple but very effective. Although time can always be an issue with treasure hunts, it ...
    Comment posted on 3-11-2010 at 08:44

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Home » StoryCubes
StoryCubes at b.TWEEN08
Submitted by on June 20, 2008 – 1:25 am2 Comments

btween_workshop+day1

As part of b.TWEEN08 in Manchester, Proboscis is facilitating a StoryCubes ‘landscape of ideas’ to help Just b. Productions and the Manchester Beacon Project define the brief for a new commission to create an online public engagement service that maps connections between people, places, knowledge and creative activity in Manchester. Starting with an initial day-long workshop to scope out the wider issues, aspirations and challenges for the design brief, a series of questions are being posed to the delegates of b.TWEEN to add their comments ideas and suggestions to:

 – Who are the key people and networks that engagement tools should target?
 – What makes engagement tools sustainable?
 – What themes would inspire people to connect using engagement tools?
 – What opportunities should engagement tools offer their participants?
 – What shouldn’t engagement tools be or do?
 – What are reasonable and achievable expectations for engagement tools?
 – What local communities should benefit most from engagement tools?
 – What kinds of links to the physical world should engagement tools have? 

b.tween StoryCube landscapeb.tween StoryCube landscapeb.tween StoryCube landscapeb.tween StoryCube landscapeb.tween StoryCube landscape

The word cloud (created using Wordle) above was generated from StoryCubes created during the workshop (June 17th) and on the first day of b.TWEEN08 (June 19th). The StoryCubes will be scanned in and shared online as inspirations for creative teams wishing to pitch concept proposals for the commission…

Update: the word cloud after day two

btween_word cloud_2_v2

Update 2 : We are really excited to be able to say that the delegates of b.TWEEN voted StoryCubes the Best Interactive Gallery Installation.

Tags: btween, Community & Events, conference, creative industries, knowledge transfer, mapping, public engagement, sharing, StoryCubes

2 comments - Latest by:
  • Giles Lane
    Ed, you can find out more about the StoryCubes here: http://proboscis.org.uk/storycubes and download a leaflet about uses of StoryCubes and the services ...
    Comment posted on 6-26-2008 at 11:47
  • Ed
    The story cubes look really really cool. is there an explanation of how they work and what they do anywhere?
    Comment posted on 6-26-2008 at 11:04

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Home » eBooks, Learning, Schools & Education
Anarchaeology at Render, University of Waterloo
Submitted by on April 9, 2008 – 12:26 pmNo Comment

UW Students, Kitchener Anarchaeology Lab

About : These eBooks were produced by students at the University of Waterloo for the Anarchaeology: Collecting Curating and Communicating Culture course, run jointly by Proboscis and Render in Winter/Spring 2008.

Downloads

  • Diane Braga – Cambridge, The City I Didn’t Know A4 | US Letter PDF 1.2Mb
  • Colin Carney – KW Bug OutA4 | US Letter PDF 1.4Mb
  • Meghan Doherty – My Town, My Community, My Identity A4 | US Letter PDF 2.2Mb
  • Angie Gaal – My UW Campus A4 | US Letter PDF 514Kb
  • Christina Gatchene – Alexandra’s Arrangements A4 | US Letter PDF 1.7Mb
  • Katie Gatenby – Your Guide to the Sculptures of the University of Waterloo A4 | US Letter PDF 700Kb
  • Ruth van Gurp – Guides to Galt: A Brief History of Architectural Spaces A4 | US Letter PDF 1Mb
  • Vicky Huang – Something is Missing! A4 | US Letter PDF 3.8Mb
  • Amy Lyons – Guides to Galt: Downtown Restaurants A4 | US Letter PDF 1.84Mb
  • Rebecca Macdonald & Andrew Guaglio – The Dissatisfied Art Student’s Guide to the Lounges of UW: Volume 1 A4 | US Letter PDF 1.6Mb
  • Rebecca Macdonald & Andrew Guaglio – The Dissatisfied Art Student’s Guide to the Lounges of UW: Volume 2 A4 | US Letter PDF 2.6Mb
  • Adam Meyer – Prolegomena to Mundanity A4 | US Letter PDF 1.4Mb
  • Heidi Overhill – The Wreck of the “Julie Plante” A4 | US Letter PDF 2.8Mb
  • Leslie-Anne Purdy – Activism on the UW Campus A4 | US Letter PDF 1.1Mb
  • Nathalie Quagliotto – Guide to Proper Etiquette… A4 | US Letter PDF 385Kb
  • Kristina Rogers – The Result of a Petition from 1896 A4 | US Letter PDF 4.5Mb
  • Jen Stanfel – Campus Space A4 | US Letter PDF 1.8Mb
  • Catherine Telford_Keogh – Positive Space Information Booklet A4 | US Letter PDF 300Kb
  • Katie Thiel – Katie Thiel: Artist, Waitress, Student, Daughter… A4 | US Letter PDF 835Mb
  • Christina Vannelli – Spaces Defined A4 | US Letter PDF 3.8Mb
  • Heather Voituk – Local Culinary Talent A4 | US Letter PDF 550Kb

Published March-April 2008

 

Tags: anarchaeology, art, collaboration, Community & Events, creative cities, eBooks, space, sustainability

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Home » Community Projects, StoryCubes
Greenhill StoryCubes by Gillian Cowell
Submitted by on March 26, 2008 – 1:21 pmNo Comment

Greenhill StoryCubesGreenhill StoryCubesGreenhill StoryCubesGreenhill StoryCubes

Greenhill StoryCubes

Each cube contains a theme with six relating statements. All statements have been said by project participants.

Related eBook: Exploring Greenhill by Gillian Cowell

Greenhill Project

Tags: Community & Events, Gillian Cowell, StoryCubes

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Home » Community Projects, eBooks
Lattice::Sydney Unwrapped by Proboscis, ICE & Lattice Participants
Submitted by on March 8, 2008 – 12:37 amOne Comment

Lattice::Sydney Unwrapped

Download A4 | US Letter PDF 472Kb

About : An eBook for the Lattice Forum (07/03/2008), a day event exploring issues of cities and sustainability arising from Lattice: Collaborative Anarchaeologies of the City. It looked at the workshop’s achievements, discussed the ways culturally diverse communities engage with their environment and considered issues of creative cities and sustainability. Proboscis spent three weeks in Western Sydney working with ICE (Information and Cultural Exchange) hosting a collaborative workshop and exchange labs with Western Sydney artists/ cultural producers and Thai community architect Kasama Yamtree.

Published March 2008

Lattice::Sydney participants include: David Capra, Ali Kadhim, Sanez Fatouhi and Amin Palagni, Ben Hoh, Tiffany Lee-Shoy, Fatima Mawas, Ben Nitiva, Matt Huynh, Tak Tran and Tina Tran of Popperbox, Denis Asif Sado, Trey Thomas, Maria Tran, Todd Williams and Kasama Yamtree.

Tags: anarchaeology, art, collaboration, Community & Events, creative cities, lattice, Proboscis, sustainability

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Home » Community Projects, eBooks
Exploring Greenhill by Gillian Cowell
Submitted by on February 26, 2008 – 3:04 pm2 Comments

Exploring Greenhill

Download A4 | US Letter PDF 1.9Mb

About : Exploring Greenhill as a Place using Computers and the Internet
This action research project was mainly concerned with how participants in Greenhill, Bonnybridge (Stirlingshire) might, (1) Create an identity for where they live; (2) If and how this can be communicated through ICTs versus traditional methods, and (3) What form this might take. Of major importance to the study was how residents saw themselves within their community and how they expressed and developed this through an interactive process with other residents, to form an actual resource or set of resources. It was also interesting to observe whether computers and the Internet were used to create these resources. This booklet is aimed local policy makers as a medium to feed back outputs and outcomes.

Published February 2008

Gillian Cowell is a community development worker based in Bonnybridge, Stirlingshire. She is primarily interested in the ways residents of this community articulate who they are and where they live through a series of interactions with each other and with the community centre. Gillian runs several projects on helping residents to create a sense of place here in Bonnybridge, through both IT and traditional methods of data capture and dissemination.
Greenhill Community Resource Centre; Greenhill Stories

Tags: Community & Events, Gillian Cowell

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Home » Events, Residencies
Friends Out There, Friday 15th Feb Watford Colosseum
Submitted by on February 11, 2008 – 7:17 pmNo Comment

Bev Carter, Friends Out ThereBev Carter, who participated in last year’s Case Study programme, is organising the launch event, Friends Out There, for a charity which will run arts based projects with residents of Umulogho Village, Nigeria at the Watford Colosseum (Map) just 20 minutes by London from Euston Station.

A celebration of African dance, art and music, the main aim of the event is to raise funds to improve facilities in Umulogho village and establish a new school building. Bev’s Case Study project, A Little Something About Me includes two eBooks (A Little Something About Me and Kedu? How Are You?) based on the experiences of children at the school and is part of a long term exchange being developed between Umologho schoolchildren and schoolchildren in the UK.

Visit the Friend Out There blog

Doors open at 6pm with live performances from 7.45pm until 00.45am featuring:

  • Kakatsitsi, Master Drummers from Ghana
  • Chimanimani from Zimbabwe,
  • Fire juggling and stilt walking by Area 51, the Masters of Breathtaking
  • and special guest Rolf Harris performing live accompanied by his friend Shining Bear on didgeridoo

More details and tickets available from the Colosseum box office: 01923 225671

Originally blogged by Kevin Harris

Tags: case studies, Community & Events, Nigeria

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Home » eNotebooks, Learning, Schools & Education, Publishing on Demand
eNotebooks: learning diaries, field notebooks and evaluation tools
Submitted by on November 22, 2007 – 5:36 pmNo Comment

In addition to using the Diffusion eBook format to publish essays and artists books, Proboscis has also been using it to create notebooks for specific activities and projects. The eBook format allows us to design and distribute a notebook that participants in a project or workshop can fill in by hand (writing, drawing or adding stickers as they wish) which can then be scanned and turned back into a PDF file for sharing – either within the group or more widely. This ‘virtuous circle’ moving from digital to material to digital is at the core of the ‘Shareables’ concept. We have designed the Shareables so that they can be used without always needing a computer, but still providing a path for capturing and sharing digitally.

Proboscis has successfully used ‘eNotebooks‘ in our schools projects as learning diaries (e.g. Sound Scavenging, Everyday Archaeology and Experiencing Democracy) and, in our community projects as a simple means of gathering local knowledge and information (e.g. Robotic Feral Public Authoring, St. Marks and Conversations and Connections).

Diffusion eNotebooks

Learning Diaries
The eNotebooks have been very effective for the schoolchildren participating in our projects, giving them a single place to record and reflect on what they have learned from the different activities and how they are integrated into everyday learning. Over the three years we have collaborated with the Jenny Hammond Primary school on Social Tapestries projects, we have worked ever more closely with the teachers to use the learning diaries to make the bridge between the activities of the workshop and what the children are learning as part of everyday school. The diaries themselves are also an invaluable tool for the teachers and us to gauge each child’s engagement with the project and its concepts – some children choose to do the minimum whilst others spend considerable time and effort embellishing their drawings and writings. This serves an additional function in helping to assess the impact on learning that the workshop has had – the diaries show how the children are absorbing new ideas, vocabulary and improving their spelling as the project progresses.

Examples: Sound Scavenging, Everyday Archaeology, Experiencing Democracy

Field Notebooks
We have also used the eNotebooks in community-based projects and workshops to record knowledge about places and communities. The eNotebooks offer a familiar ‘interface’ and technology (paper and pens) that is very inclusive and engaging – allowing people to write, draw or stick photos into them. In communities and situations where access to computers and broadband internet was not possible the eNotebooks allowed us to design a simple and effective means of asking open (but targeted) questions and enabling people to complete them there and then or post them back to us at their leisure. We see many other possible uses of this kind of eNotebook for researchers in the field doing ethnographic or anthropological studies.

We have also speculated on using the Diffusion Generator in brainstorming activities, where the eBooks are used to create iterations or snapshots of the process in situ. This would both provide an immediate outcome to the activity, but also document the creative processes along the way.

Examples: Robotic Feral Public Authoring, St Marks, Havelock Community Mapping

Evaluation Tool
Proboscis has begun to experiment with creating structured notebooks for people to give feedback and evaluation on an event (such as a conference or workshop) or project. The StoryCubes have also been used in this way – at the Enter Festival in Cambridge (April 2007) conference delgates helped create a landscape of ideas, images and themes relating to the event. Futurelab also used the StoryCubes to engage delegates at their Why Don’t You… conference (October 2007) in mapping and exploring ideas relating to new education practices and uses of innovative technologies in schools and learning. Proboscis also uses the StoryCubes as a notetaking tool (instead of taking minutes) for its own advisory group meetings, enabling us to combine the questions and observations that the group members note down in an ever-growing and evolving landscape.

Examples: Enter Conference,

Other Ideas
One of our key aims for Diffusion is to explore its uses in places (such as developing countries) with poor access to publishing technologies (both traditional print and electronic). A Diffusion eBook can, of course, be made with nothing more than some blank sheets of paper which can then be written and drawn on – or even have sections of typwritten text pasted onto them. Once made, these unique handmade books can be scanned and turned into Shareable eBooks (PDF files), endlessly reproducible and distributable through email and web downloads.

Examples: we plan to make some illustrative examples available soon

Tags: Community & Events, conference, diffusion, education, eNotebook, Generator, Shareables, StoryCubes, workshop

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Home » Community Projects, eBooks, eNotebooks, Urban & Social Tapestries
Havelock Community Mapping eNoteBook by Proboscis
Submitted by on November 19, 2005 – 12:10 amNo Comment

Havelock eNoteBook

Download A4 only PDF 868Kb

About : an eNotebook for residents of the Havelock Estate to record and share information, stories or memories etc about the local environment. Created by Proboscis as part of our Social Tapestries project, Conversations and Connections (2005-06), funded by the Ministry of Justice.

Published November 2005

Proboscis is an artist-led studio. The creative team on this project included Alice Angus, Camilla Brueton, Kevin Harris, Giles Lane & Orlagh Woods.

Tags: Community & Events, eNotebook, environment, London, mapping, Proboscis

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Home » Community Projects, eBooks, eNotebooks, Urban & Social Tapestries
Robotic Feral Public Authoring: Pollution Sensing eNotebook by Proboscis
Submitted by on November 19, 2005 – 12:10 amNo Comment

Pollution Sensing eNotebook

Download A4 only PDF 492Kb

About : an eNotebook created by Proboscis for a community workshop on pollution sensing in London Fields, held at Space Media in November 2005. The workshop was part of the Social Tapestries project, Robotic Feral Public Authoring.

Published November 2005

Proboscis is an artist-led studio. The creative team on this project included Alice Angus, Camilla Brueton, Giles Lane & Orlagh Woods.

Tags: Community & Events, eNotebook, London, pollution mapping, Proboscis, workshop

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Home » eBooks, Urban & Social Tapestries
Urban Tapestries: Archilab 2004 The Naked City by Giles Lane & Nick West
Submitted by on October 10, 2004 – 11:43 pmNo Comment

Urban Tapestries: Archilab 2004 The Naked City

Download A4 only PDF 252Kb

About : an overview of the Urban Tapestries project by Proboscis, created for the Archilab Biennial in 2004.

Published October 2004

Giles Lane is founder and Co-Director of Proboscis.

Nick West bio to come

Tags: collaboration, Community & Events, Giles Lane, mapping, mobile, Nick West, public authoring

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Home » eBooks, Urban & Social Tapestries
Social Tapestries: Creative Lab documentation by Giles Lane & Sarah Thelwall
Submitted by on October 10, 2004 – 11:41 pmNo Comment

Social Tapestries: Creative Lab documentation

Download A4 only PDF 336Kb

About : documentation of the outcomes from a Social Tapestries Creative Lab and Bodystorming Experience held at the London School of Economics in September 2004.

Published October 2004

Giles Lane is Founder and Co-Director of Proboscis

Sarah Thelwall bio to come.

Tags: bodystorming, collaboration, Community & Events, Giles Lane, mapping, mobile, public authoring, Sarah Thelwall

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Home » eBooks, Urban & Social Tapestries
Urban Tapestries: Bodystorming Experience documentation by Giles Lane, Alice Angus & Victoria Peckett
Submitted by on April 10, 2004 – 11:38 pmNo Comment

UT: Bodystorming Experience documentation

Download A4 only PDF 412Kb

About : documentation of a bodystorming experience workshop held at the London School of Economics in April 2004.

Published April 2004

Alice Angus is an artist and co-Director of Proboscis.

Giles Lane is founder and co-Director of Proboscis.

Victoria Peckett was an LSE student volunteer on Urban Tapestries.

Tags: Alice Angus, bodystorming, Community & Events, Giles Lane, London, mobile, public authoring, Victoria Peckett

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Urban Tapestries: a brief introduction by Giles Lane
Submitted by on March 10, 2004 – 11:32 pmNo Comment

Urban Tapestries

Download A4 only PDF 164Kb

About : an introduction to the Urban Tapestries project, originally written to accompany a talk by Giles Lane for BBC R&D in March 2004.

Published March 2004

Giles Lane is founder and Co-Director of Proboscis.

Tags: Community & Events, Giles Lane, London, mapping, mobile, public authoring

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