Arcturus Rising: Spring Equinox 2003
A key idea of this project was to create experience-led events which add to participants’ knowledge through their own experience. In the case of Arcturus Rising, this would be done through taking people out to a site, having first provided them with relevant information about the site and then to perform actions at the site which help to increase this understanding through physical experience. This forms part of my ongoing interest as to how and whether it was possible to change people's lived experience through presenting them with the opportunity to encounter their relationship between themselves and a site in a different way.
This piece was also designed to extend the notion of including the audience as a part of the creative process, as addressed in my previous piece The Public Record. In this project, the audience were brought directly to a site as part of the journey and overtly recorded as a part of the event. Three audience members were also interviewed at length about their experiences of the event and their thoughts around it.
The Star Project was designed to take place between the spring (Vernal) and autumn equinoxes of 2003. The preparatory period ran between the autumn and spring equinoxes of 2002 and 2003 respectively. Arcturus Rising was designed to create an opening for the Project and to act as a catalyst for other activities within the project’s timeframe.
The focus for the event itself was the making of a row of lights to reflect the alignment of certain stone rows on Dartmoor, but in a contemporary setting. The idea of this was really as a focal point for the experience of star-watching and as a physical expression of the research ideas which I had been working on and had shared with the group.