Innovative Project Recognised With Heritage Award

An innovative creative project, which celebrated the life and times of acclaimed artist Joseph Wright, has won a Derbyshire Heritage Award.

‘The Enlightenment Comes Alive’ was created by Déda Producing – the outdoor events arm of Déda, the creative centre for Dance, Contemporary Circus and Outdoor Work in Chapel Street – in partnership with QUAD, Derby Museums and artist and digital projection specialist Barret Hodgson as part of The Grand Tour 2015.

The creative project was unveiled at Derby’s Silk Mill on the opening night of Derby Festé 2015 and has won the Inspirational Award for Best Special Project at this year’s Derbyshire Heritage Awards. ‘The Enlightenment Comes Alive’ was inspired by Joseph Wright of Derby - one of Britain’s most celebrated painters - who was a member of the Lunar Society, a group of artists and influencers of the Enlightenment period.

Stories of their time were re-created through animation and projected onto the Silk Mill in a unique way using the latest building mapping technology. Stephen Munn, Director of Déda Producing and Artistic Director of Derby Festé explained: “We are delighted that this work has been recognised by the Derbyshire Heritage Awards which celebrates all the wonderful work taking place in museums, historic houses and heritage sites across the county.

The 2016 Derbyshire Heritage Award is the latest in a string of successes for Déda Producing’s work. ‘Elemental Force’ - an outdoor performance incorporating high-tech digital projections, aerial performance and spectacular pyrotechnics - was recognised with the Bronze Award for Tourism Event of the Year at the VisitEngland 2014 Awards for Excellence.

And the performances of ‘Luminaire’ at Chatsworth House won the Inspiration Award for the Best Special Project at the Derbyshire Heritage Awards in the same year.  ‘Elemental Force’, which celebrated some of the East Midlands’ key historical events’, was launched at Chatsworth House in December 2012 and then toured key venues in the East Midlands in Spring 2013 - including the Silk Mill in Derby as well as Nottingham and Newark castles. ‘Luminaire’ incorporated contemporary dance, music, spoken word and light installations.  The outdoor performances were inspired by the magical drawings and designs of Inigo Jones in his 1611 masque for James I, many of which are housed at Chatsworth. Mr Munn concluded: “The success of Déda Producing lies in its flexibility to bring together a hand-picked team of artists to create bespoke and unique outdoor performances.”

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