There is nothing permanent except change. Now there’s a phrase. Often attributed to Heraclitus but possibly by some other clever old Greek but whoever said it first they had certainly noticed a key feature of the way the world works.
However much we may crave stasis and continuity (and most of us do really, lets be honest) what we get is change. People, relationships, places, nothing is constant.
A fascinating new exhibition, Place In Process, (at the Discovery Centre, Cleethorpes until April 22nd) and subtitled Landscapes of Present and Past Grimsby and Cleethorpes, reshaped and re-imagined) gives two artists, Cleethorpes born Dale Mackie and Nottingham resident Steven Ingman the chance to explore the changing nature of places in time, whether it’s urban dereliction and decay in central Grimsby or seasonal change in the resort areas of Cleethorpes.
Ingman has a long standing interest in the way in which our relationship with, and understanding of, environmental space is changed by the passage of time. His pictures in this exhibition show iconic places in Cleethorpes including the sea wall, the Fitties, the prom and the big wheel but with emphasis on their appearance in the off season.As he puts it –
“I enjoy the process of trying to understand an environment and its human interaction by exploring it through an inverted perspective. In my previous work I have contemplated the juxtaposition of night and day and derelict spaces in cityscapes. In addition, I am fascinated in the relationship between the natural and the man made world. Within these settings I delve into the layers of human history, change and narrative. I am constantly looking for the hidden stories and through the work I produce I aim to reshape the everyday, allowing the viewer to re-imagine, question and find new meaning..”
Dale Mackie on the other hand draws his inspitration from photographs of old Grimsby, showing buildings we have long since lost, often in the process of destruction. The images on display include the changing map of central Grimsby, a collage of departed businesses including many familiar names, and a series of monochrome drawings of local buildings in the process of neglect and/or demolition.
His pictures are infused with sadness at the losses to the town’s architectural history, particularly during the late 60s and early 70s when so much harm was done to the local environment, most notably in the Bullring area.
As he says himself –
“If I had been born in Grimsby I no doubt would have ventured into some of those old historic buildings the town had to offer. Now all I can do is look at the old photos online and agree with all the comments: “Why did we rip the heart out of Grimsby?”
It’s a fascinating exhibition for anyone with an interest in the way that our area has changed over the past few decades, admission is free and the show runs until April 22nd. For more information check out the Arts Meridian website and Facebook pages.