Apart from death and taxes little in this life can be more certain than change. For better or worse, very little is constant, especially in the ever evolving entity that we call the city. As time ticks by with relentless inevitability, so things fall out of use, are demolished and are replaced with the latest bright and shiny objects of desire, only for these in turn to have their day as the unrelenting cycle repeats. This endless circle-game is however a particularly human trait, left alone nature changes very slowly. It is mankind who, in the pursuit of wealth and power, pushes for the newest, the tallest, the unusual and frequently the most outrageous.
But a city is far more than its edifices, or the moneyed men who built them. A city is about people. Ordinary people who will never have a street named after them and extraordinary people who from cradle to grave form the living pulsing lifeblood of the city. Millions of individuals, who en masse make the city come to life, give it purpose and meaning, without them the city is as empty as a desert.
“Time & Tide”, the latest audiovisual composition from multimedia artist Steve Bird, seeks to evoke the essence of a city with images of what was, what is and what is yet to be. Set in Liverpool, the European Capital of Culture 2008, a city of diggers, cranes and wrecking balls, frantically toiling to prove to the world how “Cultured” it is, “Time & Tide” questions our changing values, the very nature of ‘culture’ and wonders what has happened to the dockers, the bakers, the sailors and the factory workers who made up the real culture of the city. Where are they, now that the places where they earned their daily bread have been demolished to make way for chain stores selling the products of British companies manufactured for pennies in the Far East, or for high rent steel and glass apartments that they could never afford if they saved every penny that they earned in a lifetime? Times change – for better or worse - whether we like it or not - times change.
This is my first upload to Vimeo and I am very excited by the prospect of uploading more of my work in HD format. You can find out more at my website soundmangler.co.uk
The original of this work is in 5.1 surround sound - does anyone know if this is streamable in HD?
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