The public’s intimate and extraordinary ‘false memories’ about everything from birth to death, illness, ghosts and sexual encounters have been brought together in a new e-book by A.R. Hopwood, artist-in-residence in the Anomalistic Psychology Research Unit (APRU) at Goldsmiths, University of London.
A.R. Hopwood's False Memory Archive Anthology: Volume 1 presents ‘false’ and ‘non-believed’ memories from the public as part of a touring exhibition and events series.
The collection has been edited and themed by Hopwood for a new anthology that will feature reflections on the archive from renowned psychologists Professor Elizabeth Loftus – a Goldsmiths Honorary Graduate (2015) - and Professor Christopher French, head of the APRU.
The archive submissions tend to follow a pattern: a memory is described, only to be undone by evidence that the recollection is faulty or by a suspicion that the experience never actually happened.
The memories are in turn surreal, everyday, humorous and chilling – most are harmless insights into the fallibility of memory, while others resonate with real world consequences for those implicated in the false recollection.
"My Dad feels like he remembers the great smogs in London in '52 but he wasn't born until 1958. I feel like I remember Live Aid '85 but I wasn't born until August 1985 - one month afterwards!”
The archive is themed in a loose chronology starting with ‘pre-birth’ memories and ending in misremembered anecdotes about death. In between, we hear false memories about family members, friends, animals, ghosts, sexual encounters, world events, illnesses, fights, accidents and flying.
This extraordinary, intimate and compelling archive takes the reader on an uncanny journey through the shifting sands of autobiographical memory.
About A.R. Hopwood
A.R. Hopwood is an artist and a Wellcome Trust Engagement Fellow. He is currently artist-in-residence at the Anomalistic Psychology Research Unit (APRU) led by Professor Christopher French, Department of Psychology.
Since 2011 he has worked closely with experimental psychologists and neuroscientists in the UK and US on developing collaborative projects in response to research into false memory. This activity culminated in his most recent national touring exhibition, A.R. Hopwood's False Memory Archive.
Since 2004 he has also developed his site-specific, idiosyncratic website WITH (www.withyou.co.uk) through a number of events and exhibitions with major galleries including Tate Britain, Hayward Gallery, ICA, Chapter and the Victoria and Albert Museum.
As well as exhibiting internationally Hopwood has also written extensively for Art Review magazine and was Arts Editor of the notorious Sleazenation magazine.
In 2003 he co-curated a critically acclaimed visual art exhibition by Perrier Award winners and BAFTA nominees, nobleandsilver at Beaconsfield. He has taught at foundation, undergraduate and postgraduate level and has been a visiting/associate lecturer at Goldsmiths, Royal Academy of Art, Central St. Martins, Sheffield Hallam, UCA, Wimbledon and University of Kent.
Throughout his Wellcome Trust Engagement Fellowship, Hopwood is writing a script for a feature film, developing ideas for an artists’ museum and exploring opportunities for cross-disciplinary research projects with universities.
Download A.R. Hopwood's False Memory Archive: Volume 1, Kindle Edition, for £5.99 from Amazon