The first impression I felt when walking into the Traces of the Future exhibit was the sense of decay. Throughout the process of setting up the screens, projector and sound equipment, I was overwhelmed by the remote atmosphere, and felt I was seamlessly transported to the beautiful yet crumbling Amani Hill Research Station in the Tanzanian rainforest. The original specimen that surrounds the artwork, from bottled snakes and butterflies to scientific equipment, allowed my imagination to feel immersed within the rainforest.
Having taken in all of the displayed installations and images through the eyes of contributing Russian photographer Evgenia Arbugaeva, it became clear that the exhibit was an infusion of medical science and African art, and not only is a powerful and influential exhibition, but an educational one as well.
The Traces of the Future exhibit boasts the Amani Hill Research Station’s anthropological and historical research, drawing comparisons and similarities between the past, present and future of African culture and medical analysis. It felt natural for me to compare the growth of medical development between first and third world countries and the differences in how medical research is gathered and monitored. It is apt that ‘Amani’ is the Kiswahili word for ‘peace’, given the serene ambiance that the exhibit conjures.
With a true passion for art and creativity, I studied Fine Art and Design at Hertford Regional College in Ware, but opted not to progress to University, as I wanted to focus on finding a different path in the creative sector. After applying for many positions, I was offered a job as a Website Coordinator before moving into Website Administration. During this time I learned how to use the Adobe Creative Cloud suite through self-teaching and completing vocational courses in my spare time. I have since progressed to working for a print and design company whilst also designing graphics and producing videos on a freelance basis, click here to see where I currently upload my work.
My reason for volunteering was to give back to the creative sector and to relive a true passion of mine ever since I was young. In my spare time, I love to visit galleries and exhibits; volunteering for Bow Arts allowed me to not only give something back to the industry but to also enjoy the time I spent there.
Written by Chris Smith