On Landguard Point

What are you wearing? Can you remember where you got it? Do you know where it came from before that, or even how it got there? Now think about the place that you call home, and ask yourself the same question: how much do you really know about it, and what makes it truly yours?

Led by Suffolk artist Robert Pacitti, On Landguard Point is a project about the places we call home: what we think of as home, and what it means to host others in our home. Robert’s own experience is of growing up in and around Ipswich, and OLP radiates from nearby Landguard Point. This piece of land sticks out between Felixstowe and Harwich, and has been of national importance for centuries.Today it is a site of special scientific interest and a haven for wildlife, where the Grade 1 listed Landguard Fort sits next to neighbouring giant Felixstowe Port – the UK’s principal trade gateway. So something built to keep people out rubs shoulders with a way goods enter the country, surrounded by great natural beauty: an East of England treasure, but just one of many.

On Landguard Point has been specially commissioned for Artists taking the lead – a project at the heart of the London 2012 Cultural Olympiad funded by Arts Council England. The project occurs as a series of extraordinary events taking place this Summer across the East of England, engaging thousands of people as participants and audiences, in Norfolk, Suffolk, Essex, Cambridgeshire, Bedfordshire and Hertfordshire.

On Landguard Point is being made in three main ways:

  • Lots of mass participation opportunities across the region, including the writing of A People’s Encyclopedia of the East of England, widespread archaeological digging,  and sharing recipes.
  • A series of live outdoor events, and works to camera, across the summer of 2011 including performance, music and parades, being made by professional and non-professional performers and participants.
  • A feature-length film that is episodic in form, and exists at an intersection between live performance, community and cinema.

On Landguard Point has been constructed using the number 6 in various ways, as this is the number of counties in the East of England. The work also uses the number 205, because this is the number of nations participating in the Olympics.

OLP will produce a feature film, A People’s Encyclopedia For The East Of England as a published work, a series of new performance works by Pacitti Company, a series of new performance works by 7 other invited artists, 3 new sound commissions including an original soundtrack by Michael Nyman, an alphabet of 205 drawn symbols, a permanent collection of objects and artefacts including 205 printed flags and 6 sets of 205 silver charms, an On Landguard Point Cookbook, whatever gets dug up in people’s back gardens, archival assets from the creation period including a large newly amassed body of information about the region, a whole range of craft objects and costumes made and collected for the project, and educational packs across a range of fields. Legacies also include experience of direct participation in a world class project, training across a range of artistic and cultural production territories, new skills acquirement, enhanced community links, and the significant development of permanent ongoing activity in the region by Pacitti Company, makers of On Landguard Point.

On Landguard Point is a collaboration between artists and residents who live in the Eastern region. It will present many opportunities for the public to explore the meaning of home whilst experiencing a project that draws on the histories, cultures, geography and stories that can only be found in the extraordinary setting of the East. On Landguard Point truly is an East of England adventure in real life and film.”

Robert Pacitti, Artistic Director of Pacitti Company and On Landguard Point