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TIDAL WINDS   Exhibiting the works by Lydia Burgess and Rawnie Parsons-Lock

What messages does nature convey to us in the Oud Noord Amsterdam neighbourhood? How can it guide us?


The "Van der Pekbuurt," where we stand, was established on the Buiksloterham polder. This area was once a wild sea that connected Amsterdam with the southern sea. Crossing from Amsterdam to the Northern lands could take hours by sailboat, due to currents and strong winds. In the early 17th century, this area was reclaimed from the sea using windmills. Wind and water have played significant roles throughout history in this area.


Over the past three months, Rawnie Parsons-Lock and Lydia Burgess have been documenting the language of wind and water in the Buikslotermeer area, the surrounding area of Pexpo, bringing them closer to the neighbourhood and nature in the city. This type of fieldwork, influenced the shapes, movements, and directions that their work took. Lydia Burgess focused on water, while Rawnie Parsons-Lock focused on the wind. They were drawn to the canals that surround and embrace this neighbourhood, intrigued by the bridges connecting the old and new. Wind and water connect the two parts of Amsterdam, yet also divided them, a reminder of the history in this area. Lydia and Rawnie sought inspiration and connection with nature in these areas of the old North Amsterdam neighbourhood.


The Shape of Water - Lydia Burgess

The dual nature of water makes it a remarkable element, embodying both strength and softness, in harmony. Water's shape is ever-changing, cyclically. Over time, it shapes and erodes the Earth, while humans have sculpted and reclaimed land from the water, as seen in this area of Amsterdam. For this body of work, Lydia Burgess closely observed how water forms unique, unpredictable, shifting shapes in the canals of the Buikslotermeer area. Lydia is fascinated by the structure nature possesses; she took photos of the way water was interacting with the wind and recreated iterations of this dance through cut-out paper works. The large installation is inspired by this, posing the question at a larger scale: what is the shape of water?


Mapping the Northern Wind - Rawnie Parsons-Lock

You feel it brush your cheek. You see it move the autumn leaves. You hear it whisper and dance in the trees. However, you never see it. The wind is everywhere around us, often moved by our words and motion. How do you visualize something that you cannot see? Rawnie Parsons-Lock has been collaborating with the wind for the past couple of years, attempting to better understand its movement and create a deeper connection with nature in this way. She visualizes the language of the wind by allowing it to map out its movement. For this project, Rawnie collaborated with the wind in the Buikslotermeer area, to create new works and reconnect with nature in the busy city. Working with nature on land that has been reclaimed from the sea by mankind and where, a long time ago, ships would sail. The wind has always played a role in connecting people and land, sometimes its gusts direct us in the right direction and other times it causes an unwilling battle.

Tidal WindsRawnie Parsons-Lock
00:00 / 02:51

This soundscape/spoken word is about the changes that happened in this part of Amsterdam and how the wind and water experienced these changes. Rawnie Parsons-Lock wrote this poem from the winds point of view. (copyright)

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