The Video Nation Archive project draws from a vast video collection of over 5000 video cassettes charting everyday life during the 1990’s. It represents a "YouTube before there was YouTube” (Bill Thompson, Archive Development, BBC).
These videos were shot by 250 members of the public for the Video Nation project broadcat on BBC2 betwen 1994 and 2001. Incredibly, they were about to be destroyed as the BBC vacated Television Centre in 2012.
Having conceived of the original idea for the project twenty years early as a staff producer, I was impelled to rescue the material with the help of a pantechnicon and a forklift truck.
The archive is now catalogued and hopefully will provide a catalyst for research and new content and help create an understanding of the present through examining the past.
On this collaborative AHRC project, I am working with the BBC, University of West of England and Mass Observation to create an accessible archive for this social history of the 1990’s.
Developing a longer documentary project exploring mental health in Africa. Working with mental health advocate, Jeff Ochieng, this ambitious adventure takes in several countries in an effort to both understand how mental health is perceived in the developing world - and to see how Jeff tackles his own condition during his audacious journey from east to west.
For me, and despite any cultural specificity, we can develop our own humanity and mental wellness through learning from others around the world.
Fundraising in progress.