The Post-Utopian Dream


(all photos courtesy of the fantastic @gorminator)

Our foremen (and forewomen!) at Utopia Works may have specified a six-hour working day, but the energetic conversations amongst workers spilled out long into lunchtime and supper – just like the Derwent water which once powered this inaugural factory, the Silk Mill. In our basking of energy’s renewable flame, new friendships were forged, as working collaborations strung together great threads of knowledge from all across the British Isles.

Artists mingled with academics; makers mixed with museum curators; veteran professionals broke bread with the new blood. And betwixt them all, a parity of admiration and respect brought about new bonds of camaraderie that would set the tone of the working day, and the rhythm of future works to come.


In the workshop, wordsmiths smouldered wondrous lyric into verses of revolutionary rhetoric.


Within the prototyping room, newly-forged ideas took physical shape: the fairground of fair energy; the bamboo cage of the canary; and the hanging cloud of the carbon footprint.


And at the printing press, typographers left imprints of synergy upon blank sheets of white paper, and the brimming canvases of energetic minds.

When the working day was done, we downed our tools and disbanded, heading back towards our abodes with weary bodies and wearier heads. But at the end of the night, when we turned off the light bulbs of those houses, those apartments and those hotel rooms, the glow of our experience remained, renewable and boundless.

IMG_5724.jpgUtopia was a dream that only lasted a day – but that dream has effervesced a cloud of memories that will float in our minds for a lifetime.


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