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From January 2015 to June 2018, I worked at Deveron Projects, a socially engaged arts organisation that runs artist residencies and a year-round creative events programme. Based in Huntly town Square in Aberdeenshire, it operates a Town is the Venue methodology, with programmes of talks and events taking place in different venues throughout the town.

Artists are commissioned to spend three months (either as a block or over a longer period of time) in Huntly, developing a project which is of social relevance to the town, but also relevant on a global scale.

Deveron Projects is highly productive, programming at least one event per week and up to 5 or 6 projects per year. The projects are vast and varied and so was my role(s) there.

As Shadow Curator, my role was to work right next to the Director, Claudia Zeiske, assisting her and offering critical questions to curatorial decisions; as Art & Community Worker I worked directly with artists in residence on their projects and directly with the Huntly community, trying to maintain the 50/50 balance of artistic integrity and meaningful engagement; as Project Manager I was responsible for the overall production and delivery of the programme and day-to-day running of the organisation.

 

PROJECTS:

Slow Marathon

Lure of the Lost 

Oaks & Amity

Imprint/Abandon

Exploration Aids

300 Years to Grow

Caravanserai

The White Wood

How Humans Adapt

Energised Landscape

21 Years of Town is the Venue

Room to Reinvent

What If?

Walking Without Walls

I Stand With Tifty’s Annie

No.11 Café

The Community Crockery

 

 

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RD Box File Recall

Drystone

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When I was in Helmsdale last year I met a man, called Jeff, who was rebuilding a wall for some locals. He had been learning how to drystone wall; constructing stones without mortar.

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RD Coffee Walk Recall

Moveable Feast

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As part of Embassy’s Annuale 2015, I brewed some coffee in Moveable Feast’s bothy this weekend. This was after walking, last week,  from Huntly to Keith for a cup of coffee.

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Art/Writing

On Finding a Coffee

Huntly - Keith

On Saturday 20 June I walked from Huntly to the next town, Keith, for a cup of coffee.
It took 16.3 miles and approximately seven hours.

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academia Art/Writing Interests InTheory Material Cultures Methods MFA Study Original Work Research Writing

MFA Contemporary Art Theory

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Having just written 12,000 of them, I have few words to say at the moment.

Perhaps once you’ve read it, I’ll have thought of one.

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academia Art/Writing

Personal Glossary

Term Definition
Abwesend Absent, away from a place
Actor Network Theory Abandons hierarchical ontology to propose a level plane of entities, or actors
Agency The capacity to act in the world
An Oak Tree A transubstantiated glass of water
Art as Life Continuous practice, pure activity, not leading to particular results
Art Object Things that result from art works
Art Work/Art Project/Project Network The wider network of artist, objects, documentation, happenings, publications, curator, organisation, audience, etc.
Art Writing Writing within the art project
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Art/Writing MFA Study Original Work

Footnotes in Plastic Envelopes

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Art/Writing Original Work Writing

Wishlist

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Art/Writing

Gnommero

Gnommero is a series of five publications edited by Sarah Tripp and Richard Taylor. It features text based work by artists and writers who have responded to Italo Calvino’s reflections on written practice and literary quality.

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I read the 5th section of Calvino’s Memos for the Millenium and wrote the first draft of the text Helix-World relatively quickly. At this time I was pdf-mountaineering in Vibrant Matter and discovering the object-descriptive writing of Allain Robbe Grillet.

The piece I have written for the 5th installment of Gnommero, surrounding ‘Multiplicity’, describes an alternative perspective to Ceal Floyer’s Helix, which I saw in Berlin in 2013. I’m not going to link to the artwork here. I kind of feel the text piece only works without seeing it. Although you can’t even read it yet, because Gnommero: Multiplicity is not yet out.

Keep an eye in May! In the meantime, you can preorder the full Gnommero Collection for a very good price.

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Deveron Arts InTheory

Some Culture a Day Keeps the Doctor Away

Man walks into a gallery.
“Just getting a bit o’ culture, eh?”

hmm. I don’t think culture = art. Culture is just life, and the way of it. So yeah, of course its streamlines with health?!

Deveron Arts recently took the opportunity to collate information and responses on the successes and failures of their Cultural Health initiative. Some Culture a Day Keeps the Doctor Away was organised in collaboration with Engage Scotland; it was a full day of discussion and exploration into the concept of cultural health and the role of the cultural health worker.
Participants were a varied group of doctors, community health workers and other medical professionals, alongside artists, writers and art workers. This mix allowed a sharing of knowledge and experience regarding the correlation between culture and health.

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Deveron Arts

Ancient Rhynie

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On Saturday past, Deveron Arts hosted an event; Ancient Rhynie, with musician Aidan O’Rourke and archaeologist Gordon Noble. The welcome of specialists in varying fields and a widening of the net to more than visual arts practitioners, allows knowledge and interest to be shared. Deveron Arts deals with a multitude of themes and concepts through its utilisation of resources and involvement of contacts. To understand visual culture, we must expand beyond ‘art’, even if we are applying it back to art.

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Art/Writing InTheory Uncategorized

Edible Matter

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Food is a co-participant in our world.
Jane Bennett argues for the political recognition of things, both human and non-human. In acknowledging the Thing Power of food, the fluid nature of materiality comes to light.
You are what you eat.
In eating, the border between out and in is mixed. You aren’t what you eat. Well you are, but what you eat is you also. And together that is a thing too.
You are an assemblage of matter and everything is always Becoming; nothing is Being.

Nietzsche tried to tell me I’d be depressed without fish.
But Thoreau jumped in, “I believe that every man who has ever been earnest to preserve his higher or poetic faculties in the best condition has been particularly inclined
to abstain from animal food”.

Later that day I googled a guacamole recipe on BBC Food and went to Asda to pick up Artichoke Hearts, with the intention to preserve and progress some creative faculties.
They led me to the fish aisle.
I got depressed and could not preserve.

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Art/Writing

Write Me

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IN THE WHOLE OF PHILOSOPHY THERE IS ALMOST NO WEATHER

WEATHER IS A THIRD TO PLACE AND TIME

 

THE MOST PLEASING ASPECT OF WATER – STRANGE TO SAY – IS ITS FLATNESS

ART DOES NOT HAVE TO BE WHAT WE SEE IN THE GALLERIES, IT CAN BE IN THE LANDSCAPE

L.W. MMXV

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Art/Writing

Two Quotes

Google on Vibrant Matter
In Vibrant Matter the political theorist Jane Bennett, renowned for her work on nature, ethics, and affect, shifts her focus from the human experience of things to things themselves. Bennett argues that political theory needs to do a better job of recognizing the active participation of nonhuman forces in events. Toward that end, she theorizes a “vital materiality” that runs through and across bodies, both human and nonhuman. Bennett explores how political analyses of public events might change were we to acknowledge that agency always emerges as the effect of ad hoc configurations of human and nonhuman forces.

 

Kate Nash on Vibrant Matter
All the stars up in the sky
And the leaves in the trees
All the broken bits that make you jump up
And grassy bits in between
All the matter in the world is how much that I like you.
Right, birds can fly so high
And they can shit on your head
They can almost fly into your eye
And make you feel so scared.
But when you look at them
And you see that they’re beautiful
That’s how I feel about you

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academia Deveron Arts InTheory Research Writing

Picture Postcard

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A blog post in which I question representation and relate tourism to a work of art.

I went to Paris in 2010. I was in 2nd year at art school and hadn’t yet discovered Ceal Floyer or scrutinised An Oak Tree. I was more interested in purchasing a beret and wearing it to saunter around the Pompidou, with a sophisticated belonging of course. And then I came back to Dundee and the 31st of the month arrived as it often did, and with it, the time to discard a pair of scratchy contact lenses for fresh ones.

Think of what they had seen, though. An entire trip, a life moment. Alas, no. It could not be done.

I spent the next year or so in the studio exploring this phenomenon of stowing nostalgia in objects. But I think I may have overplayed the role of irrational sentiment.

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Art/Writing Interests Original Work Projects Writing

Bog II

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Bog II (an homage to Bog)
2015
iPhone, bog sign, recollections of Bog.

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InTheory

(In)direct Imaging

IMG_1505I wanted to write a review of Jim Campbell’s Indirect Imaging. But the show actually ended up feeling quite personal. ” I enjoyed it.”, was the simple sentence I relayed to my peers. Some pointed out a few criticisms. “Yeah,” I did agree, “but, I enjoyed it”.

Art criticism today is stylistically flattering. But I had hoped to be a little objective, a little critical.
I enjoyed it though. I hadn’t been in a gallery for over a month, or a city for three weeks, so there are contributing conditions. I mean, I don’t easily remember the last time I walked into an exhibition and my face lit up, (for real, Campbell’s work is LED sculptural installation).

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Art/Writing Deveron Arts

a ‘click’! or the motion your fingers make before a ‘click’, at least.

“But, you can’t click your fingers.”

“Shoosh.”

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Mind is roaming up here. Feet too.

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academia Deveron Arts Interests Internship InTheory MFA Study

The Useful Turn (initial ramble)

About ten months ago I was sitting at GI Festival’s Hub desk. I think it was an early Sunday morning and we were quiet. This was a voluntary gig so I figured I could peek at the copy of Frieze on the desk to fill half an hour. Sam Thorne’s ‘What’s the Use?’ has been pacing my minds-mind since that day. And perhaps now, more than ever.

Art. Use. (?)
Use Art. (!..?)

Dunno.

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Art/Writing Events Exhibitions Original Work

Something Good

The concept behind A Letter in Mind was for artists to create small works and donate them to the National Brain Appeal. These pieces were available for purchase, with all £80 of the sale going to the charity.

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