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Abstract

Topographies of the Obsolete is an artistic research project conceived in 2012 by University of Bergen Professors Neil Brownsword and Anne Helen Mydland, in collaboration with six European HEI’s and the British Ceramics Biennial. Emerging through two phases (2012-15; 2015-2020) it has to date engaged ninety-seven interdisciplinary artists, scholars, cultural commentators and students from thirteen countries. It has transformed participants’ practices, with works originating out of the initial research being celebrated on an international platform. Topographies of the Obsolete has received funding from a variety of institutions, alongside its core support from the Norwegian Artistic Research Programme (2013-15 & 2015-17), whose peer review system (2015) rated it as ‘exemplary… strengthening artistic research and its scope beyond potential communities of practitioners/researchers’. Phase two has extended rhizomatic connections between individual lines of enquiry and the project’s overarching research strands to facilitate new trajectories where each partner institution has furthered discourse through an active and evolving process of investigation. This publication, the fifth in the series, draws together reflections nurtured through Topographies’ contextualising platform from both invited scholars and artists who remain connected to the project. It comprises of a range of descriptive, narrative and poetic texts which elucidate questions, contexts and methods that offer an alternative historiography of postindustrial sites and situations.

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