The start of self directed, self imposed ‘Residency in Parenthood’, 2019-2024. Bringing structure to the unstructured. Let the chaos commence!Read More
An exhibition by members of Feminist Photography Network’s Online Residency
Exchanges: Dialogues, Hesitation & Creation - Now on at the Harbourfront Centre, Toronto, featuring the work of: Ida Arentoft, Hannah Laycock, Jennifer Long, Gina Lundy, Sarah Mangialardo, Margaret Mitchell, Clare Samuel, Kate Schneider, Arpita Shah, and Stacey Tyrell.Read More
The past 2 years have been quite eventful, what with the arrival of twins and the shock of parenthood - complete some post-graduate study too you say…. Why not?
I thought I’d write a short reflection on my experiences of studying for a Masters in Research in Creative Practices (MRes) at The Glasgow School of Art. My reasons for doing so are mostly self centred, a finishing off/rounding up of my experience but also as a way of orienting myself and my practice for the future. Perhaps they’ll be of interest to some of you out there wanting to undertake post-graduate study and looking for something other than a practice based Masters Degree.
The MRes defines itself as;
“ The Master of Research At Glasgow School of Art invites students to critically examine their academic and creative practices, within the context of social, historical, cultural and theoretical discourse. An interdisciplinary environment creates a new space for imaginative potential and connections.” (Group Show, 2017).
I leave this course with a better understanding of the different contexts in which artists make work and the myriad of ways in which they can position themselves in relation to the work they create. I wouldn’t say I understand everything that has been presented or held up as artistic practice, nor do I lean towards an overly theoretical understanding of art and it’s power to communicate. Instinctual yet not un-intellectual, too much theorising leaves me feeling cold and switched off - not what art is supposed to do. Instead what I leave this experience with is a greater developed understanding of how to get from A to B, in terms of conceptualising a project, selecting appropriate research methods and making sure it is rigorous and ethical in its' overall design. For me this course was the right balance between practice and theory.
Instead of going out and shooting more work and falling into old patterns, I stood back from the work I’d already created around housing and interrogated it in new ways; incorporating sound, text, print and photography. Definitions of what a photographer/photography is/could be had long left me feeling frustrated, I didn’t especially identify with being an artist not coming from a fine art background, yet this course provided me with the freedom of being able to contemplate creating work in new ways alongside others who were wanting to start similar conversations.
The research I produced informs and under pins an ongoing body of work, which looks at housing inequality and the disproportionate impact of austerity cuts on women, something that I’ll continue to explore here in Glasgow. For the final project I interviewed women about their experience of living in areas of social housing in London which are currently under threat of demolition and re-development. With the support of an engaged supervisor who was genrous with time, I was able to produce written work of which I am proud (I chose a 100% written submission but you can also do a portfolio/dissertation option). I was also able to meet with members of Sisters Uncut during their occupation of Holloway Women’s Prison, which also helped shape the approach of the work in terms of understanding contemporary approaches to feminism.
Some practical work was made along side the written research, some of which is posted here. These are less the finished article and more questions or responses to ideas which I’ll further explore. I re-used photographs taken on marches and rallies protesting the Housing Bill (2016), de-contextualising the hands of women, so they become symbols of women’s resistance and frustrations.
Last week I attended a doctoral studies information event at GSA with a view to studying for a practice based PhD. I’m not sure if this is the right path for me right now, although it’s a privilege to consider it an option (subject to funding/being offered a place). The lack of social housing and the impact of austerity is undoubtedly an important area worth shouting about, but right now I’m thinking what’s stopping me from cracking on and making the work anyway… more practice, less theory…. it’s just a question of getting some sort of balance.
New work commissioned as part of the 20 year anniversary celebration of Knowle West Media Centre. 20 photographers commissioned to create work on re-valuing photography, people and place. Exhibition on until early 2017.Read More
I've been thinking and playing about with the power of photography to tell stories for a decent amount of time now.
One thing I'm certain of from all this thinking is that I'm bored of looking at images on screens. I love books but can rarely afford them, so zines and screen prints seem to put me back in touch with something that i always loved about photography - the different ways in which images can be layered, read and interpreted.
I'm studying for a Masters in Research at Glasgow School of Art this year and as part of a group show at IOTA Artspace this month, I installed an image onto a vertical blind. The photograph, taken in West Hendon London, depicts a view that will not survive much longer, both the tree and residential housing will be cleared as part of the development of the 'Welsh Harp Area'.
If you haven't already seen it, and are interested to find out more, watch the BBC documentary 'The Estate We're In' which charts the experiences of some of the West Hendon residents.
As the Housing Bill reaches debate in the House of Lords, the provision of future social housing in the UK is uncertain. Home owners, council tenants, social renters, insecure tenants and lease-holders across multiple estates in London face uncertainty and find themselves challenging the local councils and contractors who are re-developing the land beneath them.
The zine explores the housing crisis through the experiences of the residents; their homes, lives and ongoing protest against re-location and re-development.
Featuring images from; The Aylesbury, West Hendon, Carpenters Estate, Sweets Way and Cressingham Gardens.
Limited ed. of 50 signed, screen printed zines.
The projects explores the current housing crisis in London from the perspective of those residents in areas undergoing significant re-development or total demolition - Sweets Way, Carpenter's Road, The Aylesbury, Cressingham Gardens and West Hendon.
The title of the work is taken from an advertising slogan used by developers in Stratford, bordering the Olympic site in 2012. It is used in this context to question what is happening to the existing community in areas undergoing re-generation/re-development.Read More
* FOCUS E15 * REAL ESTATES * PEER * 18-21 MARCH
REAL ESTATES is a six week multi-purpose project coordinated by art collective FUGITIVE IMAGES opening PEER up as a social, discursive and imaginative space around issues of housing and spatial justice in East London through a constantly changing series of exhibitions, screenings, discussions, readings and workshops.
Our’s is the fifth week, in which we will continue to build a movement that demands SOCIAL HOUSING, NOT SOCIAL CLEANSING. The week will be a melting pot of ideas and events, exhibiting visual materials and films about the campaign, hosting an eviction resistance workshop, open mic night, discussions and socials.
We aim to have a lot of fun, so please come and join us, join in!
OPEN SPACE: During our week the doors will always be open,(12-8pm), all the events are free, and we will be exhibiting our campaign materials, and showing films of the campaign throughout , so pop for a cup of tea and a biscuit and chat!
Exhibiting work about the campaign by photographer and artist Gina Lundy, and work of photographers Jess Hurd and David Mirzoeff.
* 2-4pm Energy Rights workshop by Fuel Poverty Action: “struggling to pay your energy bills or top up your meter? Join FPA for information, support and collective action!
* 6pm – 8.30pm Our OPENING SOCIAL and OPEN MIC NIGHT! (Call out for performers!!) Come and join us for a drink and some food, see photos of the Open House from Jess Hurd and some campaign films!
DAY 1-5pm: CLASSROOM WORKSHOPS:
*1 .30-3pm “The Transformation of London Council Housing 1960s-2010s: From Gentrification Buffer to State-led Gentrification” - With Senior Lecturer Paul Watt of Birkbeck, Tawanda Nyabango from CARP talking about Carpenters estate in Newham, and Jasmin Parsons from Our West Hendon talking about West Hendon estate in Barnet.
*3.30 -5pm : Geraldine Dening from DMU, lecturer on architecture,- to talk about role of architecture in the crisis. This stretches from the way the estates were built in the first place, to the tactical ways architecture is used as a weapon today (poor doors, boarding up buildings, economic/ social cleansing..) and then how/ whether architecture can help to improve the situation.
Also visual project about and the dispersal/ displacement of people based around information from the Heygate estate, postcards, people can buy a stamp and send them.
EVE: 7:00 - 8:00 pm: Informal evening of performances, readings and films, from artists and writers. Iincluding:
* Artist, Alison Ballance will perform 'Ursula". http://aballance.tumblr.com/
* Writer and critic, Patrick Langley will give a reading from a new text. http://www.mrlangley.co.uk/
* Screening of 'Letter from New Orleans', by writer and critic Morgan Quaintance. http://morganquaintance.com/
A documentary film shot in New Orleans in 2014 during DAM PROJECTS' two-week stay. The film features interviews with Prospect.3 Artistic Director Franklin Sirmans, Prospect.3 artist Douglas Bourgeois, Bounce MC Katey Red, artists creatives and more.
Produced by DAM PROJECTS, Directed by Morgan Quaintance, director of photography, Sam Fisher
* Screening of 'Inversion Reflection' by artist Rab Harling.
Evening organised by Matthew McQuillan
*Friday 20th *
DAY: Eviction Resistance SKILLSHARE DAY
*12-1pm: Screening of Sí Se Puede!: 7 Days at the Barcelona PAH,
*1.30-3pm: Housing and Tenancy Law Workshop from Sue Lukes (incl, Migrant Housing Law)
*3.30-4.30pm: How to Resist an Eviction: ways of protesting: contributions from Adivorsy Service for Squatters, Green and black Cross (Legal), and Legal defence and Monitoring Group.
*4.30-6pm MEET UP & SHARING: Open Discussion, live case-work story sharing. Contributions from Sweetsway Estate, HASL, Robin from Unite Communities, Focus E15, Our West Hendon, Guinness, Skills Network, DIGS, Radial Housing Network and many more.
EVE: 6pm – 8.30pm FILM screenings:
*Dorothy Allan-Pickard’s Carpenters State, https://vimeo.com/111399631
*Concrete Heart Land by Rastko Novakovic and Steven Ball, about the Heygate Estate. http://www.concreteheartland.info/
* Focus E15 Campaign Films by Kate Belgrave, Jason Parkinson, Julian Samboma.
*Saturday 21st *
*3-5pm LONG TABLE Public talk! Open format discussion on housing with key figures and campaigns, Including Focus E15, Skills Network, Our West Hendon, LCAP, and plenty more…come and join the conversation!
*This is the beginning of the end of the housing crisis*
*****SEE YOU THERE *****
Focus E15 Campaign
Programmed by Emer Mary Morris and Focus E15 Campaign with design help from Nina Scott and in association with Fugitive Images and PEER
The SUBTLE Construction of gender identities explored through the power of pink by photographer Kirsty MacKay in her book, "My Favourite Colour was Yellow'.
Getting work out there as a photographer is increasingly difficult and in order to publish books photographers are having to raise the capital themselves with the help of kickstarter campaigns.
This book deserves support! Have a look here: https://www.kickstarter.com/projects/1960930891/my-favourite-colour-was-yellow
Strange domestic pairings.Read More