Classroom of children and teachers sharing their artwork
Exploring the Familiar

Five days a week our children make the journey from home to school. For most of us, it’s a practical, everyday routine and we don’t pay much attention to the places, spaces and details we pass along the way. Working with visual artists Jo Coles and Sharon Mee and partnering with Centre for Secure, Intelligent and Usable Systems, University of Brighton (in collaboration with Mnemoscene) and Brighton Museum children are encouraged to notice their surroundings in the every day in order to build their sense of community through Psychogeography.

Psychogeography is the intersection of psychology and geography; the art of walking and observing, playing around with what we see in front of us, the history and myths within our urban landscapes, revealing forgotten, discarded, or marginalised parts of their environment.

In 2019, Exploring the Familiar was piloted with St Andrews Primary School in Hove with a class of year 6 students. Students were challenged to reveal something about their route to school we may not have noticed, a fact we might not know, a myth we have never imagined. It required them to look up, down and all around, to look at the streets where they walk in a different way. Students became historians, journalists, archaeologists in reverse, creative observers of everyday life. Working with their teacher and artist, students created a 3D map installation for exhibition using psychogeography techniques. The resulting map celebrated individual interpretation of the shared community of school.

Exploring the Familiar 2020