26 August 2014

Zone 1

In 2014 Close and Remote (Sophie Mellor and Simon Poulter) were commissioned by FACT and Mersey Forest to develop a new piece of work at Bidston Moss Nature Reserve on The Wirral. The resulting project is called Zone, inspired by Andrei Tarkovsky’s seminal film Stalker.

The artists developed a moving film set working with people from The Wirral and all over Merseyside, where the participants encountered a series of events inspired by the location and the original film. Bidston Moss has undergone changes from marshland to household and industrial landfill and then regeneration as a landscaped area. In particular the artists where asked to inspire thinking and consideration of the location by Mersey Forest. As a result 31 people visited Bidston Moss Nature Reserve as the Zone, including the Mayor of the Wirral, guided by Visitor (Sophie Mellor). The outcome of this has been debate on the wildlife, usage and utility of the space. 

Through the participants actions as they travelled across the Zone, Bidston Moss Nature Reserve revealed itself as a data archive, with all of the history of Merseyside embedded below the surface, seeping to the surface as dirty data to be captured and analysed. 

Watch the film of their journey on the Zone website.


Angela Piccini’s text is written from the Writer’s experience of visiting the Zone to accompany Close and Remote’s film and it is available to read on the exhibition project page.

The Zone website also includes animations by students at Wirral MET, film stills, sound files and a 'making of' documentary by Carl Davies. 

At the time of writing the Zone is the number 2 attraction in the area on TripAdvisor. Visit the Zone yourself and write your own review here.