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To Play: Glasgow Film Archive

Part 1 Project 2012
Christine Halliday
University of Strathclyde, UK
We go through life performing: performing social roles; performing self and given expectations, performing tasks and performing a certain idea of ourselves. I proposed a different and engaged view of people’s lives and memories in relation to Glasgow, actually seeing them as real performers - with a physical and symbolical structure that makes them not only meaningful in social and inter-relational codes, but also as a source of entertainment.

The Glasgow Film Archive would record the important milestones in Glasgow’s history, culture and heritage through the memories and experiences of the ordinary Glaswegian. The Archive intended to become a social gathering space within the heart of the city for people of all ages to meet, discuss and socialise. The destruction of Glasgow’s moving image heritage is steadily becoming a reality and with only six surviving cinemas within the city, the archive hopes to maintain Glasgow’s once thriving cinematic past.

The Glasgow Film Archive also intended to acquire, preserve and make available Glasgow’s moving image heritage, working to ensure that Glasgow’s rich and varied film history, both amateur and professional, was protected and accessible. Film reels, digital materials and document collections were to be held in custom- built, climate-controlled vaults designed for the long-term storage of archival materials.

The archive would employ several professionals within the film preservation industry. Archivists, curators, projectionists, researchers and film restorators would work together to ensure that Glasgow’s moving image heritage was collected, conserved, catalogued and presented for the public interest.

A small auditorium would play host to the archive footage. Examples would include newsreels, documentaries and short films based on the lives of Glasgow’s people. Furthermore, a small outdoor screening area adjacent to the historic ‘Old Fruitmarket’ would provide an informal space for passers-by to engage and interact with fellow visitors to the city.

Christine Halliday


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