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Lido to Lakeside 1924 to 1992 – celebrating 25 years of Lakeside Arts

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Nottingham Lakeside Arts is making a splash this summer to celebrate its 25th anniversary.

In a specially commissioned installation, the Djanogly Gallery’s main space will be reimagined as the Highfields Park Lido. Artist Barret Hodgson invites visitors to take a unique digital dip through the Lido’s decades, from its grand opening in 1924 to its final season in 1980, and ultimately the opening of the Djanogly Gallery in 1992.

Inspired by memories and images of Highfields Lido through the years, Lido to Lakeside is an immersive 25 minute experience for all ages. This innovatively playful installation uses cutting-edge digital technology, 8 projectors and interactive media to recreate the Highfields Lido, allowing audiences to engage with local history, art and technology.

There are up to six opportunities to visit the Lido each day* from Saturday 17 June to Sunday 2 July (*excluding Mondays). Guests will be welcomed by the Lido’s host ‘Mr John Burns’ and accompanied on their visit to the Bath by a proud and efficient Pool Attendant. Visitors can expect an entertaining digital reflection of the site’s history as a public Bath, along with a celebration of its evolution as the Djanogly Gallery at Nottingham Lakeside Arts.

Now welcoming more than 185,000 visitors annually, Lakeside’s programme has continued to grow and develop since opening in 1992. Highlights include The Lowry exhibition in 2011/2012 which attracted 46,800 visitors to a newly expanded gallery facility; and a ground-breaking digital commission for Chinese New Year 2017, Jixiang, which transformed the University of Nottingham’s iconic Trent Building into a digital canvas.

Director of Lakeside Arts, Shona Powell OBE says: “In arriving at a project which celebrates Lakeside’s first 25 years, we wanted to be reflective of the growth of our arts programme from a nationally-respected exhibition programme to a multi-arts and cultural offering for everyone.  We also wanted to reflect the University’s roots in philanthropic giving – originally through Jesse Boot – and the University’s ongoing commitment to its local community. The resultant commission uses new technology to reflect the past but deliver it in truly contemporary style. And in choosing to contribute all proceeds from tickets to LifeCycle7 we are continuing the philanthropic approach which Jesse Boot began. We hope he would be proud”.

Highfields Lido was one of the many gifts Sir Jesse Boot made to the city of Nottingham. When it opened in August 1924 it was the largest inland open-air swimming pool in the country measuring 330 feet by 75 feet. It remained a prominent feature of Highfields Park until the City Council closed the space after its summer season in 1980. Eventually the Lido was demolished and the site acquired by the University of Nottingham.

In 1992, the Djanogly Gallery and Angear Visitor Centre opened to the public, and in 1994 the adjacent School of Music and Djanogly Recital Hall opened, completing the first stage of the arts centre. In 2001, the Pavilion, including the Djanogly Theatre, was opened, and in 2011 the galleries were expanded and the University Museum relocated to Lakeside.

As part of its 25th anniversary celebration, Lakeside Arts is inviting the local community to reminisce and share their memories of the Lido on its Facebook events page at facebook.com/LakesideArts

Posted on 06 June 2017

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