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Dark Heritage

DARK HERITAGE brings home the horrors of the 18th century slavery in a touring installation created in 2007 to mark the Bicentenary Of The Abolition Of The Slave Trade in the UK.

A full and detailed website about Dark Heritage was launched on 1st May 2007 and can be seen at www.beearts.org.uk/darkheritage. The site contains detailed information about performances, workshops as well as press information.

To hire this exhibition or to find out more information, please contact Gabi Braun on gabibraun [at] beearts [dot] org [dot] uk

The Heritage Lottery Fund awarded a grant to Bee Arts CIC for Dark Heritage; comprising The DARK, a sonic installation, and specially created educational activities. HLF’s contribution enabled the creation, distribution and delivery of these participatory educational activities. Arts Council England funded the Dark Heritage tour to six locations in the UK between May and December 2007 (see tour schedule below).

About Dark Heritage

Carole Souter, Director of the Heritage Lottery Fund, said:

"Dark Heritage is a truly innovative and imaginative project which will help people of all ages to learn about the slave trade and its abolition in a sensitive and practical way. Bee Art's installation is the 100th bicentenary project that the Heritage Lottery Fund has supported and we were particularly impressed with its strong educational strand and desire to bring out many of the hidden histories of those who were involved in the abolition movement."

The DARK Installation

When you enter The DARK you enter a pitch black space where a powerful and dramatic three dimensional soundscape immerses you in a story set in the dark days of the 18th century when British ships and British finance controlled the global slave trade. In The DARK your eyes are no use to you - instead, you will need to rely on your ears, your imagination and your courage to find your way through the narrative. The resulting experience is a stimulating mixture of the exciting, the challenging and the scary, and an encounter with our heritage that dramatically illuminates a particularly harrowing aspect of the slave trade.

Educational Activities

The educational materials and activities for Dark heritage are being produced in association with the children and staff of Kingswood Primary School in Lambeth, in London. Kingswood was awarded a Gold Arts Mark by Arts Council England in 2006 and is in the top 10% of primary schools in the UK for Added Value according to an OFSTED report in 2006.

The Dark Heritage experience will be open to the general public, to school groups and community groups, offering a number of activities that have been specially created to enable visitors to immerse themselves in the dark days of the 18th century slave trade and learn more about lives of the real people who worked to abolish slavery.

Dark Heritage activities will be available to the public free of charge.

The Dark Team

The DARK was conceived and produced by Terry Braun & Gabi Braun in collaboration with the writer Maria Oshodi and composer Rob Godman,. The DARK was created by Braunarts for Culture Online and the Department for Culture, Media and Sport © 2004.

Dark History

The DARK was one of Braunarts’ most successful cultural projects, mixing interactive dramatic narrative with digital media. During 2004/2005 the installation toured museums and galleries in London, Sheffield, Birmingham and Liverpool. 

The Dark Heritage tour will be the first time that The DARK will be offered to the public supported by specially produced creative educational activities.