ARK-HIVE was a creative response to the Special Collections at the Hartley Library by artist Laura Joy. It ran from 19 September to 28 October 2006.

A modern-day collector, Laura has been recording the objects she finds in her daily path since 2003. ‘Cultural Archive’ contains over 200 indexed objects, and a series of ‘oversize’ photocopied fragments, raising issues about what is valued in our plastic age, and if what is discarded says as much about us than what we choose to keep.

In collaboration with Karen Robson from Special Collections, objects were chosen which reveal something of their original owner, and a sense of accumulation across the ages. In this collection of work, they combine with Laura Joy’s archive to reveal fragments of our past and present, suggesting that even within constant flux, some things remain the same.


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