YSI/Corridor8 writing residency

In April 2019 I was delighted to learn that I was successful in becoming the writer in residence attached to the engagement programme for Yorkshire Sculpture International in partnership with Corridor8. Based largely in Leeds and Wakefield, my residency involves participating in engagement events and designing and writing a response to these. The events include workshops led by the engagement artists with community and school groups.

I am also working with an established writer, Jen Boyd, who is acting as my mentor-collaborator. The publication(s) we produce is/are due for online release in September. Beginning from a conventional baseline of a 2500-word essay each, we are being encouraged and supported to produce something more challenging with an objective of being accessible and possibly collaborative. We are so far keen on ideas around 'laying process bare' and finding ways of showing the stages of our drafting, planning and conversations as we construct (a) finished piece(s).

An aim for me is to make a virtual, interactive sculpture marked with the process of its creation. The festival's theme is 'material literacy' stemming from the provocations put to the festival's planners in 2018 by artist Phyllida Barlow. I would like to explore words - spoken as well as written - as sculptural materials. Developing from my experiments in live written and verbal documentation of performance art, I want to collapse distinctions between art practice and art analysis. Where possible, I'd like to incorporate the words of others and acknowledge collaboration across space and time as no writer creates in a vacuum. I also want to draw attention to what we don't use, to what becomes discarded, word detritus, the scraps without value, the marginalia. Why are some materials/words valued and valid while others are not?

There are so far several strands to my drafting process, this blog and any posts that follow being one of them. The others are an email exchange with Jen, keeping a residency diary, and writing epistolary emails primarily to Jen with the immediate Corridor8/YSI engagement gang copied in detailing each of my days in residence - there are 10 spread across the engagement programme. Some of these will be writing days, so outlining them presents an opportunity to galvanize and summarize any progress or developments made. These blogs should help refine that process further.

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