Amy Pennington (2016)

Amy Pennington
Arcade of Nelson at The SHOP


Artist in residence Amy Pennington brought to you the interactive installation named ‘Arcade Of Nelson’. People were invited to come to The Shop, Nelson to use the space at any time and were invited to come help Amy make/play/talk about what the arcade’s games could be… they ranged from funny to political, ridiculous to personal!

Amy came on set days throughout May to September and hosted several evening arcade sessions. You could expect to see gold curtains, live games, pound shop prizes and much more!​

Arcade of Nelson

The Arcade of Nelson was a public installation of arcade games in collaboration with the local community. For Amy, the arcade was the perfect way to continue an engagement with the local community of Nelson.


Through a series of conversations with local people, Amy created a new set of arcade games which directly referenced the histories and ideas of local residents. Together, the games were a part-functioning, sculptural installation.

Amy programmed a series of public events under the name ‘Arcade of Nelson’, which developed the arcade not only as a symbolic space for an imagined community, but also as a symbolic community in its own right. In June 2016, for example, Arcade of Nelson presented an ‘In and Out Party’, themed around the upcoming referendum on membership of the EU.

Through conversations, cups of tea and games, the event facilitated real debate about a notoriously divisive issue, among a divided public. In this way, the Arcade occupies a space full of potential –the potential for community, for political change, and for future material conditions.


On Wednesday 17th August, Amy also hosted a ‘Games Night’ that took over the entire shop! It included:

“Everything from championship Monopoly to retro consoles, political placard competitions, bowling, and prize winning bingo!” -Amy Pennington

…and live broadcasting from ISBCA Radio, hot food and plenty of coffee.

The Drawing Shop

Artist Residency December 2012 – February 2013

Residency blog:


This was In-Situ’s very first residency, which began at our first home – Brierfield library – where Amy set up The Drawing Shop


The Drawing Shop provided a presence in the library that introduced the first in a series of in-residencies. This shop’s ethos was:

“The Drawing Shop believes anyone can draw; it is a space for trying, learning and having fun”.

Fully equipped with it’s own gallery, cardboard till, and drawing tasks. Loads of people took part and young people especially gravitated towards it, drawing pictures and writing the most amazing poems.


“Venturing out of the library I began filming in Brierfield – places like Brierfield Mill. I projected these films onto odd surfaces including bandages wrapped around people.” – Amy Pennington

Amy spent time at the local working men’s club. This is where she met Margaret. After several games of bingo, Margaret invited Amy to her home where Amy made a film of her watching old Super 8 footage of the area. The footage was projected onto an open sketchbook she held in her hands.


This film, along with other videos and films of the area, were shown as an installation in a TV shop on Colne Road. Each television in the window showed a film. Negotiating the installation with the owner was quite an experience, for him and Amy:


“It was the first time he’s come across an artist and he was somewhat apprehensive – art, in his shop window? What’s that all about…?” – Amy Pennington

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