As our Barrowland Ballads project concludes, Mitch has finally realised his long-held dream to make a Dialectogram of the Barrowland Ballroom. Dialectograms (before you ask…) are illustrations of places, showing them in great- some might say excruciating – detail.

 

To make the ’Barralandalectogram’ Mitch spoke with gig-goers and employees, bands and their entourages, and poked his nose in every nook, cupboard, attic and office he could get into. He sketched, mapped, roked through archives and artefacts but ultimately, the resulting 1.1m x 1.6m monster (or monsterpiece) came about through listening to the people who know the place best.

 

The final result encompasses the Barrowland’s earliest history right up to the staff ‘christmas’ party of January 2019. It shows all three floors of the building and market, and the audience can, in the flick of an eye, shift from 1934 to 2018 to 1983 and back again. Like Mitch’s previous Dialectograms, this is a hybrid. Elements of comic strips intermingle with maps and architectural drawings (if the architect had lost their ruler down the back of the couch…)- much like a certain Ballroom, with its elements of dance hall and gig venue laid over an equally fabled market…

 

To see for yourself (or at least get a taste of it) check out the excerpts on this page. Plans are now underway to install the original  Dialectogram in the Barrowland itself, for the enjoyment of staff and gig-goers alike. And of course, you can also inspect the poster of the Barralandalectogram that forms the dust jacket of the Barrowland Ballads book…