Cumbernauld Town Centre
February 27th – March 7h
Open each day for 9am – 5pm
Reception & Symposium
27th February – 2pm at Forth Walk #18-24
On the 18th of May 1967 H.R.H Princess Margaret officially opened Cumbernauld town centre. The town centre was to be seen as Britain’s first indoor shopping mall. On nine different levels, the town centre was designed to house all civic offices, penthouse flats, retails shops, restaurants, cinema, health centre and free sheltered parking for all customers. Under the designer’s eye of Geoffrey Copcutt, the daring megastructure architecture of Cumbernauld town centre was highly praised. Architects, designers, town planners and students of many disciplines visited Cumbernauld from around the globe to marvel at the town, for many years heralded as a utopian construction.
Cumbernauld town centre never reached its full potential and now, forty years later the new town of Cumbernauld has won many unflattering awards and has been crowned Britain’s worst town. The town centre now finds itself deprived of quality shops and has numerous vacant shop units.
Artist Neville Rae, originally from Cumbernauld, has been working with the Art Space & Nature (ASN) students from Edinburgh College of Art to make work based on the geography, architecture, art and sociology of Cumbernauld. The programme ASN is configured to consider the interrelationships between various art and architecture disciplines to assert the values inherent in interdisciplinary collaboration.
Twelve postgraduate students will occupy numerous vacant shop units within phases one and two of Cumbernauld town centre. The students will show their outcomes from a dedicated five-week research and development period focused on Cumbernauld. The exhibitions will open on the 27th of February and the exhibition will last for one week. The work produced will range from architectural drawings, models, sculpture, installation, painting, video, audio, text and performance.
The title ‘today is yesterdays tomorrow’ is a reflection of the temporal development of Cumbernauld both in conception and reality. Surveying the past and potential future of human endeavors in this geography region, the exhibition highlights public practices and ecologies unique to Cumbernauld.
For the opening of this project, there will be a symposium gathered from artists, architects and historians who will come together and use Cumbernauld town centre as a starting point for discussion on the past, present and future of Cumbernauld. This free event will take place at 2pm in the Cumbernauld Town Centre at Forth Walk #18-24 (MacKays Shop)
This exciting project has the capacity to inspire a cultural renaissance for the Cumbernauld town centre and Cumbernauld as a whole. It will bring new life and meaning to the vacant shops within the town centre, attracting a new audience, greater footfall and positive publicity to the area and will offer an exciting and alternative option to vacant shop units.
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