I’m still playing around with the poems from James Dodd’s In Camera exhibition.  I like the first poem, which I’ll put up on here, once I can get the video up, too.  I did a second poem from a second day with the same slideshow, except it wasn’t the same slideshow, as when I arrived at Bank Street, everything was different.  The black and white screen I’d been watching was full of colour photographs!  It was a bit much for me.  I spent a good two minutes in the middle of the room wondering what was going on and looking fairly lost.  Then, as I was getting used to the idea that I would just have to change my plans, the black and white photographs started appearing on the screen.  The idea was to see how a different day could affect my experience of the same artwork: it turns out, quite a lot.  None of the poems are great writing, but I think they serve as a decent starting point.  This will be a record of a process, rather than a showcase of good writing.  Good writing is a tricky concept, anyway, and getting trickier by the minute.

For example, I am taking part in an event on Friday the 11th June with two very talented artists, Mark Rowan-Hull, an abstract painter with synaesthesia, and Stephen Chase, a composer and performer.  The plan is to all turn up and just begin creating in response to one another’s work.  I think we’ll figure out how to get the ball rolling on the day.  But essentially, I will be writing, Mark will be painting and Stephen will be recording the movements Mark’s brushstrokes and my pen make, and we’ll just see what comes from the day in terms of the performative, more than its outcomes.  I think this is a fantastic opportunity for me to get involved in something I would never normally think of doing.

However, although I have every confidence in the other two, God only knows what I’ll come up with … and this is the thing I really want to overcome, the fear of what I will produce and how valuable it will be.  We all know what Ernest Hemingway said about the first draft, and basically, I’ll be offering my first draft up to some talented and established people as well as the public at large.  This is not how I usually work.  Brilliant, isn’t it!

One of the things I want from the residency is to develop a broader sense of myself in this artistic role.  As a nurse, it was easy to define myself in certain ways, and similarly, as a student.  Now I think it’s time to grow up, to stop depending on external frameworks and just get on with it.  I’ve already sensed this shifting process, in that I have become aware just how dependent I am on my student role, validating my existence through the feedback an academic structure provides.  I’m still working on the next step, the bit where I don’t need that approval to have some faith in myself, my ability, etc …


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