On Friday 25th September I’m giving a talk on zoom with Sheffield Creative Mornings, at 08:30am UK time! Registration opens on Monday 21st; be sure to register before 8pm on Thursday, so that they have time to send the zoom link.
The work-in-progress of Cis Penance will be on display online this September as part of an exhibition for the Open City Documentary Festival.
We will host a mix of curated and newly commissioned work from artists and practitioners pushing the boundaries of interactive non-fiction storytelling. The exhibition will be free to access and available internationally from 9th – 15th September. A full micro-site that has been specially built to host the exhibition will launch soon.
I’m also excited to see the other work that will be included in the exhibition, including work by Jenny Jiao Hsia and Pol Clarissou. Jenny Hiao Hsia is representing the hands-on creativity that most people still are not aware of in videogames, by showing work made in Twine, Bitsy, and other open source game-making tools, as well as a game made for Flatjam. Pol Clarissou, whose previous work such as Orchids to Dusk has made my heart soar, is showing a Bitsy piece about moss and space – “moss as texture as space folding onto itself” uses lo-fi graphics and interactive poetry to draw you into the arts of noticing in a more-than-human living world.
The exhibition is free online from 9th-15th September, if you want to check it out!
- Beadwork embroidery techniques that best incorporate LEDs
- Sewing solar light circuits to create embroidered LED nightlights
- How to have multiple light circuits in one piece, so that different sets of lights can be switched on or off.
I’m excited to be speaking on a panel with Manish Harijan (artist) and Lady Kitt (artist, researcher and drag king) on 13th February as part of a two-day event about art careers at Sheffield Institute of Arts. The theme is “improfessionalism”, which feels fortuitously positioned alongside the “indisciplinarity” theme of the event at King’s College that I got to speak at last year.
While ‘professionalisation’ suggests the positive, necessary steps to becoming an artist, there are ‘improfessional’ practices that exist at an off-kilter relation to this imperative. Outside of the professional / unprofessional binary, what else do artists do, feel, or think as they build their portfolio, write their grants, or get on with these obvious tasks? And as both a direct or dissonant response to our art-making lives, what modalities of survival and thriving do we develop? How do we – or don’t we – maintain the balance, health, and motivation necessary to keep going as supposed art professionals?
I’m going to expand the talk I gave for the “indisciplinarity” event into something that delves even more into queer theories about time and life paths. There will probably be some Buddhist philosophy in there too, and I’m going to glance a little at the void by offering some thoughts on how to role-play as though there will be a future even though the world as we know it seems so fragile.
The whole two-day event schedule looks excellent, seems like the event will involve blending pragmatic questions with critical theory. Please check it out:
This weekend, Jennifer Booth will be facilitating a workshop for the Cis Penance project, as part of NEoN Festival. We did a similar workshop this summer in Sheffield – the goal is to work collaboratively with LGBTQ+ folks to create a piece of visual artwork reflecting queer life paths and our relationship to time. This version of the workshop is going to have an extra element, incorporating tech toys such as a line-following robot or electroconductive ink, to further play with representations of systems, glitches, and discontinuity. Please come join us if that interests you and you’re in town.
Our Favourite Places is a site that reviews cultural stuff in Sheffield, and is an incredibly helpful resource that comprehensively covers all kinds of venues, events, and local businesses. This week they have published a lovely little profile of my work:
Speaking of interviews, but going in the other direction, where I’m the one asking questions: I’m keen to get more trans interviewees lined up for the next two weeks at Site Gallery. Give me a shout if you’re interested: email@example.com
Having returned from a fascinating and disorienting residency in Belfast (I’m still looking for interviewees from Belfast by the way) I’m now back in my own studio preparing work for the forthcoming work in progress show at Site Gallery this August. I’m going to show the interactive portrait cushions as well as some newer work that is still taking shape – a big part of my aim for the show is to start conducting interviews with transgender people in Sheffield, so please get in touch if that aspect interests you. The other Freelands artists are also preparing brilliant work that I’m super excited about, and we’ll be sharing an activity space for improvisation, exchange, and play. See some details here.
Platform 2019 highlights the work of the first five artists on our Freelands Artists Programme – a rolling five-year initiative supporting two-year paid residencies for emerging artists in the Sheffield City Region.
08 Aug 2019 – 01 Sep 2019
Artists exhibiting at Site Gallery: Lucy Vann, Siân Williams and Zoyander Street.
Our Platform artists will be delivering family-friendly workshops over August based on their work. Children and their families will have the opportunity to explore the artists’ creative process and make their own artwork in response.
The second year of the programme opens to applications on Monday 3 June.
Docfest is about halfway done,
and it’s been so lovely so far.
The Interactive Portrait Cushions
are hung right of the entrance to
the exhibition space, and I’ve had
great conversations with people about the unique pleasures and challenges of handmade computers.
I just finished a panel discussion with IP Yuk Yiu about his piece, to Call a Horse a Deer, comparing our approaches to simple interface design for conceptually complex works.
On Tuesday I will be on a
panel with Georgie Pinn in the
context of a series of discussions
about ecological and environmental
issues. I’m very excited that this
provides the opportunity to talk
about how computer media and
empathy discourse relate to bigger
global issues such as resource extraction, and waste flows to the global south.
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This piece is titled “Interactive Portraits: trans people in Japan” inside each pocket is a games console. By @zoyander “A playful representation of transgender people from Japan, this cybertwee experience uses the nostalgic style of early gaming to create a connection with its contributors” #docfest #trans #game
I’m going to embarrass myself this Saturday by performing a Karaoke version of Sara Ahmed’s “Feminist Killjoys” to the tune of Chiquitita (I haven’t called it Critiquita, but gosh that seems like a missed opportunity now). Details below.
Join us as we mark the closing of Re-collections with Crit-a-Oke – a free cabaret event featuring live performances, projections and karaoke.
Crit-a-Oke feels like a late night party lecture. Squashing art criticism, theory and academic texts into a karaoke blender and sipping on the thinky musical smoothie that drips from the other side.
Think Donna Summer and the S.C.U.M. Manifesto.
Ask, “Does your Mother Know” about John Berger?
Get thoughtful and dancey all at once as Sheffield’s artists and thinkers perform their favourite arty texts as you’ve never heard them, to the songs that you (probably) know.
Specially created visuals projected during the performances will reference Site’s lifespan from 1979 to the present, with contributions from Society of Explorers.
Performing on the night:
- Sarah Christie
- Matthew Cull
- Oriana Franceschi
- Caitlin Merrett King & Josef Shanley Jackson
- Miriam Miller
- Zoyander Street
- Lucy Vann
Kollective Coffee and Kitchen will be open late serving refreshments.
Crit-a-Oke is brought to you by Tžužjj – a curatorial project between Louis Palliser-Ames and James Harper.