Lowick Lime: An Exhibition by Charles Danby and Rob Smith

20 – 22 November 2019

Charles Danby and Rob Smith, in conjunction with the Lowick Heritage Group, presented the first iteration of Lowick Lime, an exhibition and event that explores the lime industry’s entanglement with materials, ecologies, people and histories in the village of Lowick on the Scottish Borders.

Lowick Lime engages with the Lowick Heritage Group’s initiative to restore a 19th century lime kiln. It expands the historical site of the kiln through the activation of walking routes, ecological and architectural surveys, the micro-industrial production of quicklime, community archaeology, the marking of hidden industrial sites, and archival storytelling. The exhibition took the form of an expansive drawing that re-orientates aspects of the geological, social, economic and industrial structures of the village of Lowick within the space of the Experimental Studio. A floating conical archival structure provided a ‘meeting place’ for publics with ‘tellings’ of Lowick, through objects, materials, scripts and artefacts.

22 November 2019

Unearthing Lowick Lime was an event in two parts. Part 1 was an open discussion hosted by Charles Danby, Rob Smith and the Lowick Heritage Group. It considered the actions and negotiations that are ongoing in Lowick, and unravelled the complex relationships to its geological and industrial limestone landscapes. It asked how a 19th century lime kiln opens new interactions with Lowick’s industrial past, how it forms contemporary meanings for the residents today and provides Lowick with opportunities for new kinds of future-building.

Part 2 was a performed reading of a script by members of the Lowick Heritage Group. The script is the latest in a series written by social historian Julie Gibbs for the people of Lowick, and is the first to be performed and read outside of the village. It is compiled from extensive archival sources that create an exacting storytelling through characters and events from Lowick’s past. This script draws on the conflicting interests surrounding Lowick’s lime industry between 1839 and 1842.


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