Using AR visuals a young man in 18th Century Glasgow, leads viewers on an atmospheric journey of over 500 years of resistance through the streets of the Merchant City down to the River Clyde.

Audiences are invited to download a bespoke app, available from 26 April – 09 May 2021 (subject to COVID regulations in Scotland), to plug in their headphones, and immerse themselves in this poetic storytelling experience, exploring the myth of Scotland’s collective amnesia of slavery and racialised wealth, of empire and identity.

Using AR visuals, haunting voices and swirling music, Ghosts will take audiences on a physical and emotional journey, walking through the heart of modern Glasgow. A lament to lives lost and an impassioned call to action in the present day.

Lead artist Adura Onashile (main picture) has worked with researcher Adebusola Ramsay, composer Niroshini Thambar, historian Dr Peggy Brunache and developers at immersive design outfit Bright Side Studios to explore the legacies of Glasgow’s past through augmented reality to tell an urgent and essential story about the city.

The story at the heart of Ghosts was inspired by adverts placed in newspapers for the capture of escaped enslaved people in Glasgow and the rest of Scotland in the 17th and 18th centuries.

These adverts have been collated in the “Runaway” Slavery project, which has seen the creation of a searchable archive of hundreds of real newspaper advertisements that were published by the city’s slave-owners seeking, and often rewarding, the capture and return of the enslaved people who had escaped their service.

Lead Artist Adura Onashile:

“The young man that audiences will follow is our attempt to make real, over 500 years of history, rebellion, resistance and protest. When enslaved Africans liberated themselves from their masters, they started a process that continues today.

We don’t know what happened to him, and history hasn’t afforded him a name or presence, but this is our attempt at saying that he existed, and though we can’t be sure whether he ever found the refuge he was seeking, this is our attempt to put his ghost to rest.”

Ghosts can be downloaded from either the App Store for Apple or Google Play for Android devices from the 26 April to 09 May 2021.

Price: £4.99

Minimum mobile specs: iPhone 6S and above and Android 8 and above. Fully charged battery required

Running Time: approx one hour

Access: the route is accessible for wheelchair users. Alternative, non-interactive Audio Described, Captioned and BSL Interpreted video versions will be available, to be experienced at home, from 26 April to 09 May. For more information contact [email protected] 

Preview access: for preview access to the app please contact Emma or Jane – details below.



Emma Schad – Head of Communications [email protected]  

Tel: +44 (141) 227 9016   M:   +44 (0)7930 308018

Jane Hamilton – Media & Communications – [email protected]  M:  +44(0)7967 742491  

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