Tangible Memories

Project Details


The overarching objective of this project is to mobilise cutting edge developments in tangible technologies and digital art practice to co-produce new resources for gathering and sharing oral life histories. This will enable the project team to address some of the key societal challenges concerning the care and well-being of older people and the legacy of the memories and stories that they leave for future generations.

Our specific objectives are:
• to creatively experiment with new ways to create 'community' in care home settings;
• to explore the potential of tangible interfaces and digital augmentation of personal artefacts to create new ways to collect and share oral life histories;
• to explore the ethical issues that arise when oral life histories are made digital and placed in tangible artefacts;
• to contribute new methods to both oral history work and to the creative practice of practitioners in care homes;
• to provide new insights into how older adults might be engaged in the contemporary processes of digital transformations;
• to better harness digital technologies to ensure that the cultural memories and insights of older adults enrich our collective histories; and
• to push forward the creative practice of interface development in the computer sciences and digital arts.

Layman's description

The main goal of the project is to help improve the quality of life for residents in care homes by building a sense of community and shared experience through a cooperative exploration of their life history stories. Rather than put these stories in a book or on a website, the project seeks to find creative ways to attach stories to objects that are personally meaningful to participants so that they can remind themselves of important memories and share them with others if they choose. The project brings together a team of university researchers, local artists and Alive!, a community partner with direct experience of delivering arts and life history workshops to elderly care home residents in Bristol. In addition to helping project participants create memory objects they can keep and share, we hope to develop resources for use in other care homes.
AcronymTangible Memories: Community in Care (full title)
Effective start/end date1/10/1330/06/15

Structured keywords

  • PolicyBristolSocialChangeAndDiversity
  • ageing
  • PolicyBristolEducation
  • learning across lifecourse
  • PolicyBristolHealthAndWellbeing
  • creativity and wellbeing
  • SoE Centre for Knowledge, Culture, and Society


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