By Matthew Kenney (Bachelor of Media Studies; Press Play URA)
Working on this project over the course of the last few months has truly been an amazing experience. On top of allowing me to work with extremely interesting archival material provided by the University of Exeter’s Poetry of the Lancashire Cotton Famine database, this project has provided me with my very first opportunity to publicly install one of my artworks and give my first artist talk to the Digital Humanities Lab group of researchers and the broader public. By engaging with the poems and history which inspired this project, I have a newfound determination to work with more archival material and use it as a foundation for my future projects. Having Kai Hagen as a creative partner has been awesome as we both share a very similar vibe and interest in aesthetics, so it has been extremely fluid shooting ideas between us and implementing them into each other’s work. Traveling to England has also been so wonderful and I have been making sure I soak up and make the most of every single moment and experience. For example, Kai and I were able to find and attend multiple different local events with some really awesome musical artists playing, and while there we met a bunch of really nice University of Exeter students who were so excited we had come all the way here from Canada. All in all, this project, the team, and the trip have been something I will never forget and I am so thankful to have been a part of it.