A Play in Time

An intimate study of St Ann's Well Gardens in Hove, exploring the emotional landscape of a city park and the importance of green space in urban life.

This exhibition was shown between 21st September – 16th November 2008

Having chosen St Ann’s Well Gardens as her location, Susan Trangmar spent a year engaging with the park’s visitors and studying its unique topography. Using moving image and recorded sound, she traced the seasonal changes, the nuances of light, shifting moods and the many informal activities performed in this popular local park.

Celebrating its centenary in 2008, St Ann’s Well Gardens is an important site for British film history. George Albert Smith set up a film studio there in the 1890s and invented editing techniques and special effects such as the close-up. A Play in Time, with its double screen and dramatic, non-chronological editing, is a fitting addition to this rich history. At times haunting or melancholy, at others lyrical and life-affirming, the film is a beautiful evocation of the freedom we enjoy in green spaces.

A special screening of the film was held in the Bowling Pavilion, St Ann’s Well Gardens, Hove, on 30 October 2008. The 25 minute long film was screened from 3pm to 7pm, followed by an informal question and answer session with the artist.

A Play in Time is also published as a book with an accompanying DVD of the work and essays by Professor David Alan Mellor, Dr Claire MacDonald and David Chandler, as well as an interview with the artist. You can purchase a copy in our Shop.

Susan Trangmar’s work has been widely exhibited internationally since the 1980’s. Her photographs and photo-based installations have been concerned with how we map and understand spaces, be they rural, urban, industrial or architectural. Weather, topography, economics, patterns of work and leisure and design all play a part. Whilst the materiality of light and experiences of duration are intrinsic to her work, her installations have increasingly incorporated sound and conversational texts.