January 30, 2020

Why do we ignore our industrial heritage?

Gina Fierlafijn Reddie, 58

‘Down to the Wire’ is a movie and art installation about the sensory memory of an urban landscape. The assemblage of photos, re-purposed mixed media paintings and music evokes urban encounters. Granton Gasworks is a well-known landmark along the Forth shoreline. Lesser known is nearby United Wire Factory, now boarded up and its fascinating history of building electric cars in 1898 is almost forgotten. Both structures are National Register ‘listed’ buildings and on the ‘at risk register’ of Buildings in Scotland. The artist produced this intimate visual memory incorporating the use of metal wire and nails to remind the viewer of the rich industrial heritage of these sites. The fragility of the artefacts symbolises the fragility of the buildings. The wires remind us how industry had a grip on these urban sites, holding it in place and now also delicately securing their presence and memories, before potential collapse. The selected music creates an atmosphere of emergency, with the crescendo of subtle tones, rising into a tempo of despair and urgency. There is no time to waste and developers and city planners must, after years of uncertainty, come up with proposals for both buildings that will suit the expanding Granton community.

Down to the Wire, 2019Digital recording, video, site-specific art installation and mixed media