What Stories Make Worlds

7mins 54seconds, 4K Digital scan of 16mm film (2023)

‘What Stories Make Worlds’ was a 6 month collaboration with Netherton and its community. The Film, Soundtrack, Publication and Poem by Michelle Barrett brought together ideas which explored what is an Archive? 

The title and starting point of the project took influce from a passage by Donna Haraway “It matters what we use to think other matters with; it matters what stories we tell to tell other stories with; it matters what knots knot knots, what thoughts think thoughts, what descriptions describe descriptions, what ties tie ties. It matters what stories make worlds, what worlds make stories.” 

  What secrets does the soil and its critter in Netherton hold? What does the more than human dwellers of Netherton tell us about its history, present and future? 

In Collaboration with John, James, Liz, Fiona, Ian Joe and Michelle

Commission by Art The Libraries, Sefton Council

Produced by Gregory Herbert and Joe Goff

All Images, Stills from Film 2023. Netherton, Liverpool Photo: Courtesy of the Artist

This- is a low laying, marshy, liminal land. A place that sits between, yet connects.

Join us as we celebrate the seasons and slowly journey into Netherton.

There’s comfort in seeing things every year. Along the canal, the hedgerows are heavy with cherry blossom.

Sparrows, blackbirds and goldfinches sing and feast on St. Benet’s day.

Netherton rewards those who look closely and listen.

The canal catches sunbeams and casts ripples- are you caught in its spell?

We map and document this landscape by walking, on paths that have carried many feet and still support so much life.

Today though- we enjoy a leisurely stroll.

Netherton is a place of portals- tow path tunnels and a piece of old rusty pipe beckons us on to the old road.

Cash crops of pine, potatoes, barley, oats and wheat might have travelled these old ways.

Unfurling ferns,horsetail and bluebells are key indicator species and tell us stories of woodland.

The mulch conceals mossy time capsules.

There is beauty in decay.

Nature reclaims a dinner party. In woodland, we greet with touch and share information, secrets too.

Thanks to those friends who have generously stepped forward with their assistance on this occasion.

May the Stand Park answer the wishes of the present tenant.

Success to old technologies

Success to nature

Thanks to those friends who travel and document Netherton

May the tenant look after the land

May Netherton look after the people

By Michelle Barrett