One of my favorite studios was in a former Bally shoe factory in Norwich. The self contained room was a former white collar space complete with a deep pile cream carpet. It used to cause much amusement with visiting artists and curators. It was entirely comfortable and appropriate for the work i was producing at the time. The downside was its context which was distracting; I would spend hours walking the various halls and offices, documenting and thinking about what the equipment would have looked and sounded like, the content of the work conversations and the divisions of labour. Floor markings and signage were intriguing relics of what once had been a thriving industry.
Notice to quit was issued about 4 years ago and the building cleared of all creative inhabitants. Recently the building was reduced to rubble with a newspaper article showing the people, machines and the divisions of labour i had long pondered about. The site is now getting ready for the construction of a supermarket. Now that’s an idea worthy of consideration, artists taking over former supermarkets, just think of the scale.