A brief history of CMR
CMR is the relaunch of Cornwall Media Resource, an educational charity established in the late 90s.
The organisation was originally called Cornwall Video Resource and began life in a room at County Hall, mainly as a membership organisation. It bought the building in Redruth in the early-mid 90s with the aid of an award from the Foundation for Sport and the Arts (FSA). The new institution was revenue funded by South West Arts (SWA) and employed a full time administrator, but when SWA hived off its film and video side to the newly formed South West Media Development Agency (SWMDA) the funding was removed and the organisation became entirely voluntary and run by the membership, who elected the directors at each AGM.
The organisation became a registered charity in the late 1990s and was renamed Cornwall Media Resource, with a new constitution. Around this time there was a big upsurge in video production in Cornwall. Then came the first relatively cheap digital equipment, and the possibility of non-linear editing on PCs. CMR members and directors played leading roles in the formation of the CIA (variously interpreted but most commonly expanded as 'The Cornish Independent Filmmakers Association') that, with the coming of European Regional Development Fund Objective One funding to Cornwall played an important part in the formulation of the Cornwall Film Fund, with a budget of several million pounds.
One sad aspect of Objective One was that the temporary existence of funding for Cornish film work accidentally killed off the collective, collaborative ethos that had previously underpinned moving image work here. Along with changes in technology that largely rendered edit suite-based production obsolete, the membership of CMR declined and the building became very little used.
Cornwall Media Resource wound down its activities. The old building was rented as offices for a few years, then stood empty for several more. Meetings on the MA Fine Art course at Falmouth Uni in 2011 led to Cornwall Media Resource being rebranded and relaunched as CMR, focussing on developing a programme of exhibitions and events, with contemporary art at it's heart. CMR is new, revitalised, reclaiming the empty building in the heart of Redruth, on the spine of Cornwall. CMR is an exhibition space, a project space, an organisation and a concept.