Made in Hull artists: imitating the dog

Projected onto The Deep, at the place where the city’s rivers merge, Made In Hull installation Arrivals and Departures tells the remarkable story of the ebb and flow of people and animals into Hull from many distant shores. Through stop-frame animation, image and sound, it is the story of how Hull’s distinct character and culture has been formed over time – a place built on working hands washed here by the sea.

Masterminding this must-see audio-visual installation are imitating the dog, a touring theatre company specialising in theatre and video installation, and Terence Dunn, a BAFTA-nominated, Hull-born composer.

We had a chat with Simon Wainwright of imitating the dog to find out more…

Why did you want to get involved with Made In Hull?

The whole event seemed like a great challenge and something with a little more depth than a lot of public film events. Sean McAllister and the team at Hull 2017 had something to say and topics to discuss which were relevant and urgent, so of course we wanted to be part of that.

Can you describe your installation in one sentence?

A video and sound installation at The Deep which explores the role of migration in the shaping of the “mosaic city” of Hull.

How did your initial concept develop into your installation?

Our initial concept was a live show, but it soon became obvious that the piece would benefit from being sound and video-based. Once we had the building blocks of the piece – modes of transportation and the architecture of the building itself – it was really all about research into the history of Hull and migration that shaped the work.

How have you used public spaces in Hull to help shape your work?

Arrivals and Departures is very much about the whole area of The Deep, not just the building itself. The sound is played out across the water to C4Di and Stage @TheDock and the audience can enjoy the piece from anywhere around that amphitheatre space. It feels like it really wraps itself around the whole inlet.

How have the communities that have travelled through Hull shaped the city?

The influence of people who have travelled to or through Hull is everywhere, but sometimes it’s hidden within generations of Hull people. That’s really what we’ve tried to say here, that even someone who believes they are deeply rooted in Hull could probably be traced far back to a completely different group of people who travelled to Hull for one reason or another. It seems obvious but you don’t think about it in everyday life.

Whether it be internal migration within the UK or from international communities further away, it’s almost certain that your roots lie somewhere different to the place that you inhabit now – and that’s something to be acknowledged and appreciated.

What can people expect to feel when experiencing your installation?

I think it’s really a celebratory piece, so I hope that people will feel a mixture of pride and hope for what the city has experienced, what it is now and what it can become. We’re hoping everyone will just turn up and enjoy the show!

Don’t miss Arrivals and Departures, projected onto The Deep and viewed from C4Di from 4pm-9pm until 7th January.