Critical Writing Index

The Experience and the Object: Making a Documentary Video Installation

by Inga Burrows

Journal of Media Practice, 2002, v. 3, no. 1, pp. 26-33

Inga Burrows was commissioned by the Whitworth Art Gallery in Manchester to create a video installation that was meant to work alongside objects associated with rites of passage, birth, marriage and death. The piece that Burrows made, entitled The Time of Our Lives, explores the importance of ritual in urban communities. This article, written by Inga Burrows herself, explores the making of her installation. The making of The Time of Our Lives was the first time Burrows had worked in documentary, and while she found the preparation for the gallery quite simple, she was far more intimidated by the new form she had undertaken to work in. Burrows settled on the "talking heads" style of documentary, but with the interviewees in extreme close up. Burrows interviewed members of communities close to the gallery itself, including people in a seniors' home, primary school children, and expectant mothers. The aim of the gallery in commissioning the piece was to encourage new communities to explore the gallery, and so Burrows had to keep this in mind at all times while crafting her video installation.

ITEM 2002.212 – available for viewing in the Research Centre

Videos, Artworks and Artists Cited

The Time of Our LivesInga Burrows