Musical stones

Back in March, during British Science Week, as part of the ongoing BM125 celebration, artist Will Hurt set up in the Wonders of the Peak gallery.

 

There,screenshot-2019-02-28-at-17.37.08 he invited visitors to play a large interactive screen, with both hands, and as many fingers as you might like, to create crystalline patterns. Colours and shaped rippled across the screen in response to our action: pulsing, fragmenting, growing, changing. Crystallisation at an accelerated rate.

Low turntable

There was also a small turntable. Here we could choose a rock, a polished stone, the sharp shards of a crystal and, rotating gently, it would be scanned and the scanned profile turned into sounds. They were strange sounds. Not sure what any of us were expecting but these sounded like slowed down voices, rumbling, grumbled mutterings, rising and falling with the shapes of their scans. A fascinating experience that had us rummaging around for new shapes to scan and wanting a second turntable to see if we could play with those stone voices and, building an exchange, listen to the ancient, slow conversations of stones

 

At the end of the week, musician Oliver Payne joined Will and gathering the assorted “conversations” of the week, he improvised a performance, the music of stones.

 

Listen to Oliver’s performance HERE

 

This was an intriguing piece of work, both Will and Oliver’s. I have a background in geology and am used to handling rocks and finding ways of telling their long slow stories through poetry and dance. There were lovely firsts here for me. The speed and sheer immediate excitement of Will’s Mineral Abstraction screen was a delight. The sounds from the turntable work were inspiring and Oliver’s final piece was great fun: I could see dance moves and strange shadow puppet unfoldings to it. It also spoke to me of darkness, of pebbles knocking together, of the rocks of Poole’s Cavern settling to rest after a long day of Being Looked At…..or just the atmosphere of the cave when the lights were switched off

Poole's 1

BM125: Buxton Museum and Art Gallery is 125 this year and to mark that anniversary, the BM125 project is bringing together experienced with new and emerging artists with 12 months of artistic initiatives. Look out for

Mermaids

Scimitar-toothed cats

My sister’s scarf

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Maps, dragons and tiger-leopards

A golden dragon sits on a crumpled map

First Hoards events

Buxton Museum and Art Gallery

golden eggs

We never really know what’s going to happen on an event. We can be fairly sure of the materials we will use and the general direction of activity but it is hard, when planning for dragons, to anticipate Dandelion Cats

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Dandelion Cats

We have started plotting the stories of the hoards we are buolding through the events programme now

 

There were maps to take you to a hidden hoard if you are clever enough to decipher the clues and brave enough to risk the dangers…

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Under the sea?

In a pyramid?

Near the swings in the park?

On the other side of the moon?

Surrounded by trees and fiercely guarded by a cat!

Where will you hide your treasure? 

And how will you know how to find it?

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On Thursday, there were dragons hatching from golden eggs to guard golden hoards….or maybe not. Hence the Dandelion Cats who guard golden flowers for bumblebees. There were several very laid back foxes who could sort of, maybe, OK now and then, guard, well, something. Someone had said, you know, Someone asked them to…well, someone offered to pay…but what are pennies to a fox who is counting rabbits?

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What hoard would a Viking guard?*

And there is an ongoing question: what do you value?

What is the precious thing that you would keep safe for centuries?

Would it be golden wonders?

Or a pottery ball full of coins?

Or seeds for a future flowering?

Friendship?

 

And there was Molly, the Tiger Leopard, guarding her wonderful little Leopard Cub, the rarest cub in all the world. And there was Bessie the Bear with her Unicorns who were very interested in that same cub…..

Tiger leopard

 

The next Hoards events are as follows. All these events are at Buxton Museum and Art Gallery and all events are free and unless it says otherwise, you can just turn up and join in. With talks please arrive for the scheduled start. For other events allow 30 minutes at least for the activity.

 

1. Dave the Moneyer, Saturday 27th and Sunday 28th April, 12 – 3.30pm. Come and watch how money used to be made….

 

More details, here: https://buxtonmuseumandartgallery.wordpress.com/2019/04/24/a-glitter-of-coins-event/

Or here: https://www.facebook.com/events/830578163972722/

Dave’s own company, Grunal Moneta, can be visited, here.

 

2. Talk: Hoards and hordes – the Viking conquest and settlement of the East Midlands,

Tuesday 30 April, 11am–12noon Join British Museum curator Gareth Williams to find out how archaeological discoveries combine with historical evidence and place-names to shape our understanding of the Viking presence in Derbyshire and surrounds.

 

More information here: https://www.facebook.com/events/2214633065510425/

 

3. Managing your own Hoard

Thursday 2 May, 12noon–4pm

Get information on handling household finances and managing debt from the money advisors at Citizens Advice Derbyshire District.

 

4. Treasure Chests 

Sunday 5 May, 12 noon–3.30pm

Make and take a treasure chest for the hoard you haven’t got yet…or that you might be hiding under the bed. In a sock. With a dragon. Allow 45 minutes.

More information:

Here: https://www.facebook.com/events/2153931458047298/

 

Or here; http://creepingtoad.blogspot.com/2019/03/from-maps-to-dragons-events-at-buxton.html

 

Or call Buxton Museum and Art Gallery on 01629 533540

 

Hoards: a hidden history of ancient Britain

A British Museum and Salisbury Museum Partnership Exhibition

This exhibition runs from Saturday 13th April to Sunday 16th June, 2019 in Buxton Museum and Art Gallery

 

* Vikings: we had a Viking today with a very big, very fluffy beard who sailed away in an eggshell boat – probably following a treasure map drawn by a fox…. 

And many thanks to our friends from the Bumblebee Conservation Trust who joined us on Sunday on such a lovely day we had hardly any visitors!

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A glitter of coins – event

Dave the Moneyer

Saturday 27th, Sunday 28th April

12noon – 3.30pm

Buxton Museum and Art Gallery

Reynards Cave 76087206_coins
A coin is hammered, and beaten and shaped to be carried, pursed, pocketed and walleted. A single coin might be polished by the hands of centuries, traded, treasured, stolen and hoarded. The old coins in our old hoards probably started life like the coins Dave from Grunal Moneta will strike on his travelling mint this weekend, so come and watch the beginning of a story that might run for another 2,000 years

Dave is bringing his travelling mint to Buxton Museum, so come and find out how to ‘make’ money (and even help), the beginning of a story that might run for another 2,000 years……

This event is free: no booking is needed, just drop by and join in

This event is part of the Hoards Event Programme
Hoards: a hidden history of ancient Britain
A British Museum and Salisbury Museum Partnership Exhibition
This exhibition runs from Saturday 13th April to Sunday 16th June, 2019 in Buxton Museum and Art Gallery

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A Season for Treasures

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collected treasure stones

Family events for the Hoards exhibition

As the Hoards exhibition unrolls its treasures in the Museum, we are unfolding our own series of Hoarding events to accompany it

Using a set of questions to shape our plans, events respond to the challenges

 

Where would you hide your hoard? (Tricky Treasure Maps, 18th April)

What would guard your hoard? (Here be Dragons 25th April, Giants, Dragons and Terrible Traps, 26th May)

What treasures would your Hoard hold? (A Golden Day 21st April, Curious Coins 30th May)

What will hold your Hoard? (Treasure Chests 5th May, Silk Purses and Sow’s Ears 15th May, 2nd June; Pottery Piggies 9th June)

 

Over the next couple of weeks, we’ll get entries on all of these on this blog (a couple are already linked in the list above)

Meanwhile, keep an eye on these pages and on the Creeping Toad blog and facebook page for details

thumbnail1. TRICKY TREASURE MAPS

Date: Thursday 18th April

Time: 10am – 12 noon

Place: Buxton Museum and Art Gallery

 

Where would you hide your hoard?

What clues would you offer to the lost treasures of Grin Low, the buried wonders of Pavilion Gardens, or the Terrible Treasures of Skellybob Wood?

 

10 paces, 2 paces. 

A hop, a skip and a jump. 

Head north and east 

Or west and south. 

Turn around and sing….under  the bridge and over the river, 

Behind the rock, 

Behind the rocks,

Behind the last hope of any help…..

 

Join artist Sarah Males for a morning of wild invention: draw your own treasure map. Add as many wonderful things and terrible obstacles as can fit on a crumpled sheet of paper

 

No ideas? No problem! Just take a wander through the Wonders of the Peaks gallery, or even better, loiter in the Hoards exhibition…

  • Materials provided
  • Free
  • No booking needed: just drop by and join in
  • Last entry 11.30
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collected treasure stones

2. A GOLDEN DAY

Date: Sunday 21st April

Time: 12 – 3.30

Place: Buxton Museum and Art Gallery

What will we find in your hoard?

An afternoon starting your own hoard: make your own treasure. There will be the broken shells of golden eggs hatching golden fish perhaps, or beautiful birds. Maybe your own golden brooch or badge.

A curling golden dragon armlet,

A shining golden ring,

Who knows what treasures

A spring afternoon may bring?

 

Collect a golden stone to share some golden moments among the High Peak Rocks.

Meet the Bumblebee Conservation Trust and find out more about Nature’s own gold-keepers and hoard-makers

  • Materials provided
  • Free
  • No booking needed: just drop by and join in
  • Last entry 3.00

Gryphon 5 copy 33. HERE BE DRAGONS

Date: Thursday 25th April

Time: 10am – 12 noon

Place: Buxton Museum and Art Gallery

What will guard your hoard?

Or whose hoard are you setting out to steal? Will you slide a golden coin from under the fiery belly and watchful gaze of Smaug the Dragon? Will the Wyrm of Wormhill find its treasure plundered? Or will l there be a dragon under your bed who will wrap herself up in dressing gowns and gold and keep your treasure quite, quite safe?

Then, we should remember that Gryphons are the Hereditary Guardians of Treasure so maybe you would like an eagle-headed, lion-bodied, wide-winged friend nesting in the shrub at the bottom of your garden. Or maybe we just need a fluffy kitten to distract people…..

On this morning, we’ll be making dragons….just little ones but as friendly or as ferocious as you like

  • Materials provided
  • Free
  • No booking needed: just drop by and join in
  • Last entry 11.30

 

These are Creeping Toad events for Buxton Museum and Art Gallery as part of the Hoards Event Programme

Hoards: a hidden history of ancient Britain

A British Museum and Salisbury Museum Partnership Exhibition

This exhibition runs from Saturday 13th April to Sunday 16th June, 2019 in Buxton Museum and Art Gallery

Bumblebee close up
some treasures grow and enrich everyone

 

 

 

 

 

Crystalline: British Science Week at the Museum

Crystalline

11 – 16th March 2019

Crystals copy
a glitter, a flicker, light off a crystal….

During British Science Week (9 – 16 March 2019), Buxton Museum and Art Gallery will be hosting the artist Will Hurt as part of the BM125 celebrations. Will’s work explores unusual ways of working with the minerals in the Museum collection

Abstractions
Abstractions

During the week (11 – 15th) Will will be based in the Museum galleries working with schools and other groups. If you are interested, contact the Museum who will put you in touch with Will.

email: buxton.museum@derbyshire.gov.uk
Tel: 01629 533540

On Saturday 16th, we are having a Minerals afternoon with all sorts of exciting things going on

 

With Will, you might:

 

  • Make Mineral Sounds. Place minerals from Buxton’s collection on to turntables and listen to them make music. Custom software and webcams translate the silhouettes of minerals into audible soundscapes.
  • Draw Minerals. Use an iPad to create images of your own virtual minerals. Draw geometry inspired by minerals into virtual space, choose sizes and colours then save and print your images.
  • Create Mineral Abstractions. Interact with a large touchscreen to explore an audio-visual composition created in response to electron microscope images of minerals.
Draw
draw unexpected new minerals

Musician Oliver Payne will also be joining us on the Saturday to do a short 20min sound performance using Will’s Crystalline software and some of his own contraptions.

Our regular event leader, Gordon from Creeping Toad will be on hand to help with other activities including

  • Growing Crystals Kits: prepare your own mineral mix so you can just “add water and wait”….when you go home, you can grow your own Borax sort-of-snowflake or a crystal garden
  • Make a mineral zoetrope: design and make your own flickering crystal magic lantern
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crystals grown on our last mineral event – thank you, Jess!

Joining in:

Saturday 16th March

Times: 1 – 4pm

No booking needed, just drop by and join in: last new entries 3.30

Free

Materials provided

Sounds
the shape and surface of a mineral become sound and music

 

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