The site-specific project will re-stage the original photograph in the same area that it was first taken a hundred years ago. Located on Fournier Street next to Spitalfields church, this house is characterised by the exceptionally consistent quality of the original 18th century houses. The house has been faithfully preserved in its original appearance, and therefore will offer the ideal conditions for presenting the atmosphere of the photograph.
Associated with poor housing conditions and the criminal life of Jack the Ripper, the ‘awful East’ has survived side by side with the giant financial district beginning at Liverpool Street. Spitalfields has become extremely popular with London’s edgy and artistic crowd and is thriving with new business, In the meantime, the conservation area within its quiet streets nearby still evokes the past by keeping their authenticity and the feeling of being in another century.
Visitors will enter the ground floor leading to a gallery space where the original photograph, supporting documentation and related images will be displayed. The audience will be invited to pay 6 pennies (the minimum price of rent in 1900) and re-enter the house through the main front door individually, following the corridor and uneven wooden staircase up to the first floor alone to fully experience the atmosphere of the reconstruction.
Exploring the reality of being and time, the space will assume a central position where time, space, and matter are inextricably connected. The installation will stimulate the flow of thought and memories but at the same time make one painfully aware of the fact that it is not the actual site. Artistic and historical crowds will merge and for once have the opportunity to enter into this house and experiment physically with the human condition of the time.
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