Slavery remains an international issue. Thousands of people are estimated to be working as slaves within the UK, in highly exploitative conditions, with no rights, and under threat of violence.
Location: Beneath Tron steeple on Argyle Street.
Tawona Sithole as Frederick Douglass
Sophia Carr Gomm
As part of the Merchant City public pilot art programme, author Louise Welsh and architect Jude Barber of Collective Architecture have collaborated on a series of soundscapes exploring Glasgow’s involvement in the tobacco and sugar industries, and contemporary responses to the system of forced labour that it depended on - the transatlantic slave trade.
The sound installations draw on writings by Frederick Douglas - a freed slave, and also imagine the viewpoints of the city merchants, slaves and abolitionists. Each of the buildings and sites where the soundscapes are located were built with wealth generated by forced labour or associated with abolitionism. The seven pieces were written by Louise Welsh.
The project was commissioned by Glasgow City Council and has been recorded with the help of professional actors, and students from the Royal Conservatoire of Scotland. Technical design and installation was carried out by sound and light company Northern Light.
Writer/Creative Design: Louise Welsh
Architect/Creative Design: Jude Barber
Installers/Technical Design: Northern Light -
Colin Cuthbert, Andy Littler, Steven Lugton, John Harkness