In 2015, Metal launched NetPark – the world’s first digital art park. Visitors to Chalkwell Park can now find an extra layer of activity to the usual park life as NetPark, open all year round, currently hosts 15 digital artworks and stories, created by artists, musicians, writers, illustrators and Southend school pupils.
Each artwork is an App to be downloaded to your smartphone or iPad. With content hosted via GPS co-ordinates, the works take you to different areas of the park to experience by turn meditative, thoughtful audio walks, a spoken word tour of an imagined love story, a music tour by US musicians Matmos using sounds recorded on site (with a star turn for the resident peacock), augmented reality talking trees, adventure stories and much more.
Two new artworks have recently been added to the NetPark collection, in June 2017. Both audio works, Spiky Black by Amanda Loomes and Alison Carlier, created in response to the historic Rose Garden and the punk gardener who tends them, takes listeners on an abstracted but informative exploration of how roses are bred, grown and named – all set to a fantastic soundtrack. The second work, Woodland, by French and Mottershead is a contemplative piece that asks listeners to find the shade of a big tree, lie down (perfect activity for a hot day) and go on a poetic audio odyssey spanning 1000 years to explore how the afterlife of a human body is part of the natural life cycle of the earth.
NetPark is open all year round, with free public wifi across the park. The works are available to anyone through smartphones (Android or iOS) or iPads.
Please note: Some works are only available on iPads. Devices are available to borrow by during our Open Days and by arrangement from Metal on 01702 470700 or firstname.lastname@example.org.