Your browser is no longer supported. Please upgrade your browser to improve your experience.


We are open Sundays to Fridays from 9am to 5pm

Crosscut by James Barber

Crosscut is a multisensory, otherworldly experience that immerses the audience in the sights, sounds and atmosphere of the subterranean world of mining.

Posted 20/07/23  |  Events

A Site Responsive Installation

 The viewer will experience the sensation of standing at the edge of a mineshaft looking down into an abyss that becomes alive with visual and audio fragments of authentic, mining knowledge and memories; some unusual and surreal, but none the less real.

The term ‘crosscut’ refers to a tunnel that spans a mine’s network, supplying material from deep underground for extraction to the surface. The installation Crosscut presents excavated recollections within a hybrid space, a fusion of contemporary art and history that transcends the traditional museum display.

Cornish artist James Barber has spent the last year engaging with Geevor’s mineworkers past and present, their families and extended community. He has documented these conversations, and responded to the site and his own subterranean experience.

Here is a snippet of the embedded audio:-


‘A perfect balance between historical/ social documentation and a dream-like experience.’

Giles Jackson Assistant Curator Tate St. Ives

‘This is the best interpretative installation I have ever experienced’.

Michael Bird (author and art historian).

‘A very believable depiction of life underground; the noises and conversations. You won't find this anywhere else. It's as if you are stood looking down Victory Shaft’.

Mike Simpson Mine Manager

‘I felt completely immersed in the piece – being surrounded by the sounds of miners’ voices and suddenly realising that there were miners walking below me made me jump and exclaim aloud! The work creates a complex and thought provoking experience.’

Jane Sutherland Director Cultivator

Great Exhibition!! Brought back so many memories, good or bad thinking of lost friends.

Vaughn Curnow ex Geevor miner

Wonderfully evocative piece of work. Thank you James.

Ann and Tony Frost

‘Having worked here underground it brings it all back with authentic voices and flashes of activity. Superb piece of work!

David Harvey (ex- miner)

‘A little scary – which was good. I can’t imagine how scary it was for the miners’. My ancestors worked at the mine.

Beverly White, Virginia USA