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In the summer of 2006, Living Derby collected polaroid images and memories from over 200 visitors to Banks' Mill Open Studios. Each visitor had their photograph taken and answered 2 questions - Where are you from? Where do you feel you belong? They could then place their picture on one of three maps in the place that best answered the question - Where do you feel you belong? The map options were 1)Derby and the surrounding area, 2)The U.K. 3)The World. The results were surprising and conversations (and some arguments!) took place between family members, friends and strangers; as the body of images grew.
These photographs and interviews took place in Derby Museum and Art Gallery and featured museum staff. We encouraged each person to find a place they would like to be photographed in the building and to bring a personal object that had meaning to them. Jonathan Wallis - Assistant Head of Museums, wrote about the experience this project gave them: “For us the benefits were related to team cohesion – We all had something in common to talk about that was not work. It was fun and we laughed about it. We brought something of ourselves to work with us, often things that others did not know about. We have also discussed between us what they are going to be used for and the benefits for us personally and for the museum as a whole.” For Living Derby staff it was a privilege to be allowed a behind-the-scenes look at Derby Museum and to be welcomed so openly by the people who work there.