Home is where the Piano is – How can you feel at home in Orchard Park? CROP MARKS, Contemporary Art Trail, Orchard Park, Cambridge (UK), 28 – 31 August 2009

In the frame of CROP MARKS art trail, urban (col)laboratory explored ‘at homeness’ for one week in Orchard Park. Orchard Park is a major, mixed use development on the northern fringe of Cambridge. The site will include 900 new homes, public open spaces, commercial units and community facilities. Occupied Houses: 508 (July 2009).

Rather than a final work or object, the process, the action of research and the ‘working’ became the work itself. A simple question ‘How can you feel at home in Orchard Park?’ became a way of meeting as many people as we could in 5 days. We explored ‘at homeness’ by asking people who live and work in Orchard Park for instructions regarding what we could do to feel more at home; putting this advice into practice in different locations across the development. For example we borrowed a dog and went for a walk together with the family. By asking people how we could feel at home and what home means for people in Orchard Park, we made connections over one week and for a moment we felt at home.

The activities: “hang out your washing” / “take a dog for a walk” / “pay someone to make you feel at home” / “invite people round” / “meet as many people as you can” / “have a picnic”