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“This is Culture”

This photography project was done as part of a residency at Southampton Solent University I spent time photographing Southampton’s new Cultural Quarter which is a designated area for the promotion of cultural activity within the city’s centre. Southampton City Council in partnership with Southampton Cultural Quarter Development Trust have identified 13 sites spread across an area from East Park Terrace, including East Park, Above Bar and Guildhall Square; stopping at Havelock Road and continuing down Commercial Road. These venues include art galleries, a park, library, theatre, a concert venue, a bar, open space, a university building and a council office building.

al quarter initiatives have been adopted in many countries to encourage urban social and economic regeneration. The rationale is that ‘consuming’ culture encourages social cohesion and thus strengthens local communities. Areas with ‘culture’ also become attractive places to live, work and visit. Even so, some members of society remain excluded from participation.

Exploring the area, there are approximately 41 sites of many different types, including the 13 identified by the Trust that can reasonably be said to demonstrate culture. This photographic documentation of the Cultural Quarter shows them all and resolves the 41 venues into 13 locales.

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