Researching Rural Housing: with an Artist in Residence

Menelaos Gkartzios, Julie Crawshaw

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

10 Citations (Scopus)
53 Downloads (Pure)


This article presents a unique amalgam across artistic research and rural sociology. We draw on a collaborative art residence programme between a University and an arts organisation in England, which invited an artist to respond to a highly contentious topic in rural England: housing development. The ambition for the residency was, firstly, to provide new perspectives on rural housing research, and, secondly, to provide a space for engagement between the local community, planners and academics. Through our interdisciplinary collaboration, we explore how Sander Van Raemdonck’s artistic process worked towards these ambitions. The artistic practice involved a walk with the local community, a peripatos, in a post-industrial site proposed for housing development. Drawing on the artistic practice, the interdisciplinary team developed then a second walk, a ‘walkshop’, to mediate between housing/planning experts and reflect on the experience of the artistic practice. Following those artists and social scientists that already utilise walking as a method, we argue that the artistic peripatos can support a multi-sensory way of communicating, a way to get ‘under the skin of a place’. More critically, we argue that artist in residence programmes provide rich opportunity to develop interdisciplinary research with artists.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)589-611
Number of pages23
JournalSociologia Ruralis
Issue number4
Early online date3 Apr 2019
Publication statusPublished - 1 Oct 2019


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