York Panorama: A Few of my Favourite Panels!

Those of you who follow us on Twitter and Facebook will know that we’ve been counting down the days to Christmas with an archive advent of different panels from our new public art installation. But if you don’t follow us on social media then fear not! I’m going to highlight a few of my favourite panels here- just for you!

I’m going to start off with this panel which is inspired by our wonderful Goodricke and Pigott collection (and is quite apt for those of you who loved watching Tim Peake take off into space last week like I did!).

As you can see, artist Emily Harvey has used the shapes mapped out by the stars in the sky to create this beautiful depiction of the night sky.

Next up is a panel illustrating one of my favourite things about summertime in York- the return of the ice cream boat!

The ice cream boat providing people with desserts for their picnics!

The ice cream boat providing people with desserts for their picnics!

The next panel is one of my favourites because it was inspired by a memory shared with us whilst we were doing some filming in Rowntree Park. We were asking people to share their memories of York- it could be anything from life events to details of everyday life. One lady told us how her husband proposed to her on the city walls- and now they both have their own special place in our art installation!

A proposal on the city walls

A proposal on the city walls

Another favourite is the chocolate factory production line. Well, we couldn’t really have an installation about York without featuring the city’s chocolate past and present could we?! And as a chocolate lover, it was bound to be one of my favourite panels!

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And finally, the border to the entire art piece has to have a mention- it really is beautiful!

But don’t just take my word for it- pop into York Explore and see our fabulous art installation for yourself! Why not try and see how many chocolates you can spot, or how many insects you can find in the border?!

Update: Explore’s Art Project!

Back in August, Sarah published a blog post telling you all about our exciting art installation that will soon be in place on the archives landing here at Explore. We thought it was about time we posted an update on this project that’s got all of us here at Explore on the edges of our seats!

Just to refresh your memories, the art installation is based on over 600 responses we have collected from you- the public- to the question ‘what should York remember?’. It will take the form of a panorama of York, titled ‘What York Means to us’. Inspired by the iconic city walls, the piece will be made up of individual bricks that each tell a story about life in York.

Emily's mock-up of the art installation, inspired by individual memories and the city walls.

Artist Emily Harvey’s mock-up of the art installation, inspired by individual memories and the city walls.

We thought we’d keep you posted on our progress and asked artist Emily Harvey to tell us how it’s going…

Emily busy creating the panels in her studio!

Emily busy creating the panels in her studio!

“The whole panel is sketched out in more detail now – I will keep adding and removing things as it progresses though! Once particular blocks are designed they start to take on a life of their own, and I know that some characters will pop up again in different scenes.

Here are pictures of some sketches and maquettes testing out the ideas:

Polo swimmers – lots of people talked about swimming and this block shows children having fun in the outdoor pool (sadly no longer there) with polo ‘lifesavers’ .

Learning to read – this image comes from a stained glass panel in All Saints Church in North St – a little girl is being taught to read 500 years ago, this picture will be combined with contemporary children and university students in York.

The white horse – you can see the white horse from high points in York and it is included in the panorama to show the landscape beyond the walls.

carriageworks plaster

The carriageworks – lot of people have memories of working here, this image is made from old spanners, bolts and other tools and other tools used in engineering.”

The final artwork will be installed at the end of November, so we’ll be keeping you updated until then. I’ve just updated the display boards on the landing here at Explore, so pop in and take a look! Don’t forget to keep your eyes and ears peeled for future updates!

Our newly-updated display boards on the landing where the art installation will be.

Our newly-updated display boards on the landing where the art installation will be- pop in and take a look!

Finding inspiration in the archives…

A nice part of my job is when I feel inspired by an archive collection that I am working on. This happened most recently when I was cataloguing the Ebor Cycling Club collection (ECC), and what a gem their archive collection turned out to be! I have enjoyed cycling ever since I was a child- but this collection has inspired me to get back into it, and here’s why…

Ebor Cycling Club badges and logos (ECC/4/3)

Ebor Cycling Club badges and logos (ECC/4/3)

The Ebor Cycling Club collection contains the usual club minutes, finances and correspondence that most community group collections include, but what stood out to me were the operational and publicity records of the Club. They include runs cards that detail where the Club cycled to and from on various days; record cards showing who cycled where and in what time, and descriptions of trophies and prizes awarded to members for exceptional rides during competitive races. But it seems that the Club was not just serious about cycling, but enjoyed a thriving social life as well.

The collection offers a glimpse of their annual dinner dances and weekly social nights, and shows a club that fostered strong friendships and provided plenty of good times. What a fun club to be a part of!

I imagine Ebor Cycling Club members wearing their badges with pride as they competed in events, or even when they were out for their regular Wednesday night rides. I have visions of them celebrating their successes, and rallying around one another to offer support during competitive events. It seems that there was a real camaraderie amongst the members of the Ebor Cycling Club, and it only took me a day’s worth of work organising the collection for me to want to have been a part of it.

Lawrence Street Sunday School Cycling Club in about 1890 ( law_gre_42).

Lawrence Street Sunday School Cycling Club in about 1890 ( law_gre_42).

York is undoubtedly a cycling city, and has been for many years. These records offer an exciting glimpse of York’s cycling history, and really bring to life the joy that the sport has given to people throughout the years. It is for that reason that the Ebor Cycling Club collection (ECC) has quickly become one of my favourite community group collections, and I urge you all to come and take a look at it, and feel as inspired by it as I am!