New immersive art in Ripon will be centred around a courtroom trial

Liverpool-based artist Paul Rooney.
Liverpool-based artist Paul Rooney.

A new immersive art experience centred around a courtroom trial will be unveiled in Ripon next year.

The Ripon Museum Trust has been awarded funding from the Arts Council England to deliver four contemporary art commissions over the next four years, and in February, their latest project will be launched at Ripon Courthouse Museum.

Liverpool-based artist Paul Rooney, who has been commissioned by organisations such as Tate Liverpool and The Drawing Room, will create a sound installation based on a child's experience of a courtroom trial.

His work will be inspired by a real trial that took place at Ripon Liberty Courthouse. Paul is determined to make the art very collaborative, recording interviews and sound pieces which will potentially use the voices of actors, singers, community groups and children, as well as staff and volunteers from the museums.

Sound will resonate from all areas of the courtroom space, bringing noise, animation and life back into the courtroom.

The museum's curator, Leah Mellors, hopes the installation will provide a dynamic and emotional experience that contrasts with the formality of the courtroom space.

She said: "We are passionate about opening up our museums to more people and developing new and innovative ways to interpret our historic buildings and collections.

"Contemporary artwork can provide a different perspective on history and heritage and we hope that these artworks will encourage visitors to experience our buildings and collections in new ways, provoke them to think more deeply about the stories and people connected to them, and challenge their expectations of our museums."

Leah said she is passionate about attracting new audiences to the museum, and hopes that the art installation will provide another way of connecting with visitors who may never have ventured into the courthouse before.

The artwork will be developed over the next two months, and will be open to the public from February 9 to May 31. For more information, contact Leah Mellors on 01765 690799, or email leah.mellors@riponmuseums.co.uk.