David Stone // Modern Gazetteer


Bournville was born out of the success of chocolate sales circa 1900 and is seen today as a model village. With exceptional working conditions unheard of in Victorian times the company attracted many good employees which saw the growth of not only the factories but also the surrounding countryside, fulfilling the Cadbury’s Brothers vision that was the antithesis of a “squalid and depressing [] industrial area.”

The character of Bournville as seen today is instantly recognisable. It was the consideration of the workers that led to the dispersed nature of the village which was intended to be “secure from the dangers of being spoilt either by factories, or by the interference with the enjoyment of sun, light and air.” (Harvey, W)

But how do we experience Bournville? As a triumph of the quintessentially British quirk? Or a fond memory of a generous family business operating idyllically within capitalism? Or perhaps a triumph in architectural vision and longevity?

I will attempt to delineate the perceived character of Bournville over time using many archives of pictures and publications from different sources. I can map the perception of the character at certain times by combining and eliminating the purely visual aspect of the photography using software that finds geometric similarities in photos and expresses them as a 3D point cloud.

Using the ‘reductionist’ images I will create an archive of my own and hope to find ways of peeling more information out of the archival art both used and created.

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