Mill Lab Workstation, the first audio installation in the series Crosscut Dispersed.
A Tin Coast commission by James Barber located at Geevor Tin Mine from 17 May 2021 onwards.
After over 50 years, a pioneering piece of Cornwall’s modern history resurfaces. Mill Lab Work Station uncovers a unique, incredibly intricate, cutting edge piece of computerised equipment that utilised radioactive isotopes. The machine is bought to life with recollections from its original operators, surrounded by fascinating objects, within an audio soundscape.
Geevor Tin Mine’s artist in residence James Barber recalls ‘my mother used to refer to this machine whilst she worked as a mineral analyst at mine sites throughout Cornwall’. James worked with Geevor’s former chemist and a former technician to record recollections about working with this ground-breaking system.
He reconditioned the rusty old cabinet in order to utilise its structure to resonate audio recordings within it – respecting the past by making something new, to bring to the surface the surreal and yet very real world that wasn’t that long ago.
Geevor’s normal entrance fee applies.
‘The lobster story…the quirky funny side, the human side, that’s something you lose when you just have buildings – they don’t tell you stories, people tell you stories’ – Nina, archaeologist.
‘The immersive feeling of the sounds, words and singing from Mill Lab kept me listening! The sense of hearing them through the old equipment and the story that we might be looking at the very machine that the artist’s mum had worked on was captivating” – Jill Stott, Tin Coast Manager.
Part of the Tin Coast Events Programme. Commissioned by the Tin Coast Partnership and Cornwall 365.