Stoodley Pike

Stoodley Pike

15 April 2009.

Morse Code message sent with light from Stoodley Pike, a former beacon site, Langdale Common, Calderdale.

Digital video and artist's book. Exhibited at 'Monumental Masons', Artist run gallery space, 17 Osborn Street, London.

stoodley pike, a beacon monument, erected by public subscription, commenced in 1814 to commemorate the surrender of paris to the allies and finished after the battle of waterloo when peace was established in 1815. by strange coincidence the pike fell on the day the russia ambassador left london before the declaration of war with russia in 1854. was rebuilt when peace was restored in 1856.

This inscription on the obelisk is no longer legible to read and placed high above our heads, obscuring the monument's rich history and it's relationship with those who died in the wars.

We discovered evidence of a beacon at this site from 1772, recorded as Studley Pike, as part of beacon chain used to warn of the impending invasion of the Spanish Armada in Elizabethan times. The way the original monument fell seems to act as a protest that the peace it had been built to celebrate was over. The site contains links to many forgotten wars; we wanted to commemorate the forgotten history of the place, and those who died in the wars it is associated with. We encourage people to look again, re-using this site as a site for communication and re-affirming it's commemorative function. As the sun set we transmitted a text from the Pike using light with Morse code, linking to the Pike's use as a beacon. From the raised platform on the monument we sent this message for anyone who looks up to see the light in the surrounding area.

Remember me in your heart, your thoughts, and your memories of the times we loved, the times we cried, the times we fought, the times we laughed. For if you always think of me, I will have never gone.
Calling all, this is our last cry before our eternal silence.
—The last Morse code message, sent by the French Navy in 1997.