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About Us

PLaCE International is a research consortium of creative, practice led, academic research centers and individuals that addresses issues of site, location, context and environment at the intersection of many disciplines and practices. PLaCE International is Co-Directed by Mary Modeen and Iain Biggs. Originally in the Faculty of Art, Media and Design at UWE, Bristol, it is now located at University of Dundee, (Duncan of Jordanstone College of Art and Design). It is joined by the University of Minnesota, Departments of Art and Landscape Architecture; the University of Melbourne, and Université de Nantes. Other member institutions in Canada and the Netherlands are pending.

Several of its constituent members are also founding members of the MST collaborative: Mapping Spectral Traces is a trans-disciplinary, international group of practitioners, community leaders and artists who work with and in traumatized communities, contested lands and diverse environments. Another closely affiliated research group is Land 2 (“land squared”), a UK-based group of place-based researchers and arts practitioners, based at Leeds University. www.land2/ While there is a large overlap in their concerns, MST, Land2 and PLaCE International are separate research consortia.

PLaCE International is committed to investigating, re-imagining, and re-invigorating the following areas of concern: curating in and out of place; site-specificity and situated practices; creative intersections with urban and rural geographies; interdisciplinary approaches to renewal and the environment generally; and the intersections of memory, place, and identity - through its research projects, creative programmes, educational activities and international partnerships.

PLaCE International pursues this mission in the context of the continual redrawing of boundaries - between art, design and media practices, their theorization, and congruent disciplines and practices. It recognizes the centrality of environmental issues and sustainability to art, media and design education – seen as a vital interface between individuals, society and the world as environment - by working with peers and by feeding research back into the curriculum through interaction with staff and through direct contributions to the learning environment.

The various PLaCE International centres also act as agents for ensuring the dissemination and impact of this wide-ranging research as it finds application within the community, as a commitment to socially engaged practices.
Iain Biggs 
Mary Modeen
© 2015 PLaCE International