Will Roberts, a MArts student in our department whose dissertation I’ve been supervising this year, has written a post for the Manchester Met Lighting Research blog. While his research was on urban farming in Detroit, he found an interesting use for the farms during the winter:
On a winter’s day, this site lies dormant; only the infrastructural components of farming activity are noticeable, propped up against the high-rises of Midtown that are clearly visible against the sparsely-housed neighbourhood in the foreground. However, by night this space is illuminated; used in an innovative way to not only reassure the neighbourhood that they are not forgotten about during the off-season, but also to raise awareness and gain the attention of passers-by to the communal activity of urban agriculture. The incandescence of the Christmas lights is juxtaposed against the formidable dark of the night-time that continues to stalk increasingly large numbers of neighbourhoods throughout the city, as a ‘responsible reduction’ of street light usage becomes endemic to the cityscape.