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Photo of a yellow Travelling Gallery bus.

Four postgraduate students - Sofia Cotrona, Rose Hill, Margaret Jensen and Paolina Montes - on ECA's MSc by Research in Collections and Curating Practices programme have collaborated with the Travelling Gallery and the University of Edinburgh Art Collection on a new mobile art exhibition about community-led struggles for safe, affordable housing in Scotland.

Resistance in Residence, organised as part of the student's Guided Research Placement, will feature archival materials, public responses and contemporary artworks by artists Winnie Herbstein, Joey Simons, Keira McLean, and Lucas Priest that explore past, present and future community efforts for fair housing conditions. 

Dr Kirsten Lloyd, Programme Director of the MSc by Research in Collections and Curating Practices, said: "The Guided Research Placement offers our students a terrific opportunity to put theory into practice. Each year we set different briefs with our partners based around a problem and invite the students to test out solutions through a live project. It’s really tricky to teach some of these skills in the classroom and so the course is designed to take students through a supported development and delivery process where they can learn through doing.

"Resistance in Residence is a wonderful testament to their ambition, vision and commitment."

The exhibition will appear at Edinburgh College of Art in front of the Fire Station building on Thursday 9 February 2023, in the Travelling Gallery’s distinctive gallery bus. 

A photo of the interior of an exhibition, text on the wall reads "What does your dream home look like?" Image: Cultural Heritage Digitisation Service, University of Edinburgh

University of Edinburgh Art Collections Assistant Curator Liv Laumenech, said: "Alongside commissioning new work, displaying the collection across campus, and lending to external venues, our main focus for the Art Collection is for the acquisition and use of artworks in the support and development of research and teaching within the institution. Winnie Herbstein’s trilogy of moving image works (Studwork, Minutes and Dampbusters) were acquired from the artist in 2022 and it is fantastic to be able to integrate the works so swiftly in teaching.

"As well as supporting the MScR Guided Research Placement through the loan of the artwork, the students’ work and their exhibition will also provide invaluable insights and knowledge to the collection about artworks and their display."

Visit the exhibition 

The Travelling Gallery bus will be parked at ECA’s Fire Station building on Thursday 9 February, 10am to 4pm and is open to all. After ECA it will visit various locations, bringing the exhibition to people from different communities across Scotland. View venues and dates on the Travelling Gallery website. 

Walk with the School of Pedestrian Culture 

There are a number of other events taking place alongside the exhibition. ECA 2022 graduate Lucas Priest will host a School of Pedestrian Culture walk on Thursday 9 February at 2pm. The walk will take visitors to explore the complexities of ‘studentification’ and community campaigns in the Bonnington and Leith areas of Edinburgh. 

Lucas graduated with a BA (Hons) in Intermedia and was jointly awarded the 2022 ECA Graduate Show Purchase Prize by the University of Edinburgh Art Collection. Through the Purchase Prize, Lucas’ work was acquired by the Art Collection and the Collection also commissioned Lucas to create this latest walk in the city.  

Archival display and talk 

When the bus travels to St Andrews on 20 February, Dr Catherine Spencer will provide the chance to look at items in the Franki Raffles Photography Collection relating to the exhibition, particularly the documentary photography that Raffles undertook on housing in Scotland during the 1980s.  

Heat and Damp: Housing Struggles in the Franki Raffles Photography Collection will explore the relevance of Raffles’s photographs of housing to feminist housing activism from the 1980s to the present, particularly anti-dampness, insulation, and heating campaigns.

Film screening

The exhibition will close with a film screening on 20 February at Edinburgh Student Housing Cooperative with Queer Film Night, a monthly LGBTQ+ screening event. The evening will include showings of the films Minutes (2019) and Studwork (2018) by Winnie Herbstein, followed by a Q&A with the artist. 

For more information on the exhibition and events please visit the Travelling Gallery website.

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