INVESTIGATE! The Manchester Bombing, a personal journey.


Posted by: Creative Times

on June 13, 2012 08:53

UPDATED! For the 16th Anniversary on the 15/06/12.

Manchester has suffered at the hands of the terrorists, and now strides forward.

This project has taken many turns since the original submission of the ‘Module Learning Agreement’ back in the summer of 2010. After discussions with both Tash Willcocks and Lawrence Giles at Salford, the project has been distilled into a much more focused highly personalised visual response to the traumatic events of 15.06.96 and how this impacted on one particular place, the Royal Exchange Building. This year on 15.06.12 it will be exactly 16 years since that fateful day. The legacy of the events of that day, and the subsequent recorded changes, are viewed from a very personal perspective, leading on from a ‘brutal life threatening event’, to now a ‘stunning example of creative visual awareness’ in the space of 16 years.

As such the aim is to highlight how a ‘practical creative visual study’ into the area of ‘visual awareness’ might be employed in respect to this research topic/area and how this might be effectively planned, developed, and created. As part of this exercise I have chosen to focus upon a specific environment, in this case Manchester, focusing on the area, which has witnessed dramatic change in recent years both due to urban regeneration and most significantly the IRA terrorist attack in June 1996.

The other supporting aim is to celebrate not only the changing face of ‘the city of my birthplace’, but also my ‘favourite place in this city’, the Royal Exchange Theatre and the building which houses this ‘extraordinary example of engineering’. To show how the events of that day in June affected the Theatre and the building. The images selected are just a small part of this ‘visual development’ and how I have responded to the challenge of the task as part of the ‘MA personal project module’. This has also been a ‘journey of visual self discovery’ for me, after spending many years away ‘both in London and on foreign shores’ coinciding with the same period of the ‘significant transformation’ of the city and it’s various levels of infrastructure.

The final result of this study is a ‘creative and visual exploration’ of a significant event in a city’s timeline 15.06.96, and how this impacted on not only the retail area, but also an ‘artistic arena’, in this case the Royal Exchange Building and the housed Theatre’. What we now see from the work undertaken and the research brought in to support the visual journey, is after adversity the area damaged including the Exchange building has been reborn and transformed in 16 years, to become an area of ‘cutting edge architectural design’ and highly creative use of colour to support the visual communication.

Royal Exchange Theatre – 1 year consultancy P1

The Branding shown below forms part of an in-depth year long consultation in development with the RET in Manchester, the first part of this development is shown in project Part 1 of a year long consultancy with The Royal Exchange Theatre to access and visualise a ’Personal Response to the Manchester Bombing in Manchester 15/06/96, North West, United Kingdom.

The first image in place, is now the second stage of development for the Identity. This represents ‘one year on’ from the initial work undertaken in 2011. From here there will be both ‘Print and Digital’ versions of the Identity with applications on to an assorted group of media items…

This work will also form part of 2 Exhibitions in the next 2 months.

The first – Media City 13/06/12 University of Salford BA Graphics Final year show. My MA Project sketchbooks will be part of an ‘MA Mini Exhibit’ which is included in the show.

The second – The John Rylands Library – 23-29/07/12 Peter Godkin MA Solo show – A Personal Journey. This week will see a week long activity and showing of my MA Creative work, and how it concluded with a connection to the Library. I shall also be giving a talk on the subject on Thursday 26/07/12 at 7.00pm to 8.0pm.

The project background including early sketch work development and later finished concepts, can be found on this link,

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