Since April, 2013, Buddleia Artist In Residence, Andrew Dodds, has been researching the physical and social landscape of North Manchester, including the area’s rich history of protest movements and socially progressive organisations. In particular, Andrew has been focusing on the post industrial Irk Valley – a green edgeland, which stretches from central Manchester to the hills several miles north of the city.
On 7th August 2013, Andrew organised a walk through the Irk Valley, led by Irk Valley and Medlock Programme Coordinator for Groundwork, Jo Fraser. The walk passed hidden meadows, industrial ruins left to nature and fishing ponds populated with red-eared terrapins. It highlighted changes which continue to affect the valley, such as a government scheme to build upon large swaths of the land, as well as its current, unofficial uses.
Andrew Dodds is a Northern Irish artist currently based in London. He uses a diverse range of strategies of art making and distribution – including publications, events, video, sound and objects – to critically reflect on our historical and cultural relationship with ‘nature’, the voice, and the shared potentialities of public space. Dodds consistently engages others in the imagining, production and reception of his artworks. By combining the skills and interests of the specialist and the amateur, local and institutional knowledge, the everyday and the imaginary, his works create a new kind of space where future ideas might form. Since the late 1990s Dodds has exhibited widely at major public galleries, private galleries, artist-run spaces and sites beyond the gallery including, CCA Derry-Londonderry, Baltic Centre for Contemporary Art, Barbican Centre and Ikon Gallery.