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Red Pass

Berwick upon Tweed 

2007

Artist's research process 

The land that the Ramparts Business Park and North Road Industrial Estate Berwick upon Tweed are built on has been used for agricultural and industrial activity since the Iron Age. In a series of research visits to Berwick upon Tweed artist Charles Quick set out to investigate the historical and contemporary uses of the site. Working with maps, and documents in the local archives and interviewing individuals and organisations based on the industrial estate, asking them about their business activity and their relationship to the surrounding landscape.

The lighting scheme
The resulting artwork, 'Red Pass', is a light-based sculpture installed as a series of eight lighting columns, which plot a single line across the two estates. Positioned along an existing grass embankment, which runs through the whole site, the spacing is influenced by the location of an historic meadow field system as well as by the existing topography of the land.

The lighting modules are radio controlled, and each is individually powered by photovoltaic panels, using the same technology developed for the manufacture of LED highways signs. Red lights are used to reflect the nineteenth century name for the site, 'Red Path's High Fields Meadows', probably a reference to the colour of the local soil. From his conversations with the companies on the site, Charles arrived at a series of different sequences for the LED columns that reflect and reveal the day-to-day rhythms of business activity and the natural patterns of the landscape - tea breaks and traffic movements, the arrival of migrating birds and the wind blowing in off the sea. The lights come on at different times during the day, each time running though one sequence. Each sequence lasts between three and eight minutes. The result is an independent electrical infrastructure which highlights different aspects of business park life. The sequences can be altered and reprogrammed as the Ramparts Business Park becomes established.

Commissions North Leaflet 2007

 

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Pictures