Final Show: #CrouchHillBanbury

Despite the recent Periscope app update which now allows permanent archive of Broadcasts with chat, I made the decision to allow auto-delete after 24 hours.

The ephemerality and impermanence is an essential component of my work and process, highlighting the concept of dynamic socially created space.

Traces of previous broadcasts are now no longer visible as they were previously

Paradoxically, the events below are heavily documented through Screen-shots from the Broadcasts, created within the 24 hrs before they became unavailable……

it’s really hard to let things go…especially when you need evidence of your process….

 

John Ruskin – Work:

15th July

I read aloud from John Ruskin’s lecture ‘ Work ‘ delivered at the Working Men’s Institute Camberwell in 1865,( which is now the South London Gallery……..?)

to link my location on Crouch Hill in Oxfordshire with Camberwell. This also served as a point for further reflections on work, labour, art and relative positions in contemporary society.

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There were 130 in the Lifestream audience at one point and generally retention was better with people usually sticking it out for a while on each brief Scope.I’m finding the stats interesting to analyse despite not searching for ‘Likes’.

I decided to leave the tent up for the duration of the Show, over the weekend and for the rest of the week until Tuesday evening.

I wrote a note to explain and left it in the tent. I left contact details as well, out of courtesy.

Often, teens camp-out and sometimes just leave the tents.

I didn’t want it to be damaged, removed, offend someone unnecessarily or occupied by another person!

Martin Fiennes – Broughton Castle:

16th July:

Martin’s parents are Lord and Lady Saye and Sele.

William FIENNES (1st Viscount Saye and Sele).The only son of Richard Fiennes, 7th Lord Saye and Sele, he was educated at New College, Oxford, and succeeded to his father’s lordship (barony) in 1613. English politician and promoter of colonization in America. He was a Puritan in religious sympathy and a leader in the House of Lords of the opposition to James I and Charles I.

I invited Martin to Crouch Hill, where he spoke of his visions for the preservation of areas of countryside, whilst accommodating the need for housing into the future. He also talked of  his imaginings of the Puritan and Royalist troops, noisily riding up and down past the foot of the Hill along what is now a busy B road, prior to the siege of Banbury Castle, and the Battle of Edge Hill in 1642.

It brought the past alive for a moment or two, and changed my visions of the present.

He was surprised and amused by the 249 viewers.

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Dozing in my Tent:

17th July

I just started to broadcast  and lay down in a warm tent for a doze…showed the sky to  over a hundred people…Strange, this periscope business…

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33 comments! and a surprising number of viewers.

also found a note when I opened the tent…. it said ‘PLEASE DON’T ‘

I wasn’t sure what they wanted me not to do?
Stay….? Go…?

Some dog-walkers came past and had a chat

Paul Mobbs (@ramblinactivist) :

17th July

I’d invited Paul to talk as he has a deep knowledge of the Quaker Civil War history of the area and an involvement in peace activism in contemporary conflict.

He forms a link from this final work to my initial investigations in Croughton , the Reading Room and RAF Croughton.

In fact, when he arrived he didn’t want to talk about those topics at all but lead a popular walk around the Hill discussing local geology and its implications.

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Edith Eisler, 

18th July

This was the anniversary of Edith’s death in 2011. A  violinist, teacher, noted musician and critic.This is  a recording of her playing Hindemith 

I told the story of how my father became friends with Edith and her family during WWII, following their movement from Vienna to Britain.

Also their subsequent correspondence whilst my father found and located in Japanese POW camp in the Far East, and following his release.

This family correspondence continued, even following my father’s death.

Her kindness has enabled me to pursue this Post-Graduate study.

(Along with a Vice- Chancellors Scholarship from The University of the Arts London).

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iChing and Philip K. Dick

19th July

I am interested in the link between subjective evaluation involved in Divination practice and ritual with the binary code which underlies all things digital.

See this article here in The Guardian

and this J Proteome Sci Comput Biol. 2012; 2012(1): 3. Published online 2012. doi: 10.7243/2050-2273-1-3

I had hoped to use yarrow stalks from the Hill but the season was late and there were few available.

I’d also thought of using Glo-sticks but their popularity at the Public View put paid to that…everyone wore them home..

So I used the cards I’d used in previous broadcasts.

The whole event became ludicrous…more so than other Scopes, as Tia and Purdy, the dogs belonging to my ‘assistant’ were in playful mood.

In the end one of the dogs, Purdy, selected one of the cards…

I read from Philip K Dick, the visionary writer, who cites the iChing in The Man in The High Castle.

His alternative outcome from WWII, and the implications, are  worth re- considering now, I believe. The sun set, the moon was almost full.

In total with Louise’s simultaneous broadcast of the event, there were over 750 viewers..

???!!!!

These were the cards selected.

4 Meng: INEXPERIENCE

Humbleness and sincerity when comprehending will increase knowledge.

9 Hsiao Ch’u GENTLE RESTRAINT, HOLDING BACK

Dense clouds suggest postponing the action till after the rain.

56 Lu: THE WANDERER, THE TRAVELLER

The steadfast and persistent traveller will have good luck.

Make of that, what you will….

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UAL Summer Show: Camberwell College of Arts, Wilson Road, London SE5 8LU

20th July

I went to the Final Crit with my cohort at Camberwell. Saw many of my colleagues and enjoyed seeing the Show.

It was odd walking into an exhibition containing my own work but where I had delegated set-up to colleagues. They had displayed many of the bowls around the building but as these are now empty they had been removed.

The last remaining had been give a plinth, two bowls placed one inside the other with a top light in a dark space. It looked tremendous! Donald Takeshita-Guy had been mainly responsible and is keen on developing his curation skills.

It worked really well

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Later, Clara and I met with the collective of artists to talk about plans for our residency in Norway in 3 weeks time. Very exciting.

Little Venice Studio  with Clara Duran, Keir Williams,  Dave Meckin, Alice Helps, Joe Fairweather-Hole

and then…..NORWAY RESIDENCY and Neptune Developers Camp, Melbu, Nordland

Neptun Introduction

and as Manuel from MAFAD said

” So long and thanks for all the fish”

Its been amazing,  Thanks Jonathan K!

Continue reading Final Show: #CrouchHillBanbury

#CrouchHill Banbury #Public View #Camberwellual

Louise messaged me this photo of the yarrow emerging on the morning on the Public View…

Better late than never…YARROW

Some of the people who had been involved in the events, gathered over the evening at the summit.

Several of us were broadcasting the event via Periscope and others who had been involved but couldn’t be there in person ‘hopped on’…

Some people managed both- to be there at a distance and then join in person…

 

Some of the sharing paraphernalia…

People brought Champagne and flowers

 

 

The Covenant of Salt, ‘Twitter’ chocolates, and Mystic Writing pads were enjoyed by many… even those who claimed no artistic talent!

Games had unexpected winners..or no winners at all depending on the play.

People were Periscoping people Periscoping people Periscoping ………etc

 

Clara Duran was taking photos of the Summer Show in Camberwell at the same time, and watching proceedings on Periscope on Jonathan’s phone ( see later)

I hadn’t realised that they had also announced Clara and my Residency Award in Norway  at the award ceremony.

 

Here are images of some of the group’s work : Clara, Tristan ( our work has some similarities..) Pete ( who I have still never met!), Pascale, Donald, Yvonne and Sharon

SIMULTANEITY:

Some examples of the simultaneous images taken and simultaneous events ( if the clocks on our phones and cameras and image files are to be believed ) in Camberwell and on Crouch Hill.

 

19.41

 

19.46

 

19.53

 

20.14

Below are some screen shots which show the involvement of the Periscope audience when I went to find Clare Carswell, who also took many of the documentation photos – Thanks Clare)

She had been following proceedings on the phone but then drove to the Hill to try to find us.

I had thought of putting up signs but it would have changed the event and the Happenstance element for people who hadn’t had direct invitations

Also it was fun to see people randomly wandering around, getting lost, finding each other, talking to strangers, and eventually finding us at the summit!

 

‘ I’ve never seen so many Lost People!’ – Thanks JimStr

People made it to the top, physically and via our Live streams.

 

Drawing time is Catherine Lette,  who was documenting her visit to the Summer Show Private View in Wilson Road, Camberwell and simultaneous experience of Crouch Hill, Public View and some of my work in the process

The Screen shots below are from my Stream

 

These are from Catherine’s @drawingtime phone and stream

 

These are from Sharon Bertram’s

 

Here’s an example of chat during the stream…Anything from dog snacks to Brexit

Which at least gives it some time-reference.

Importantly, people  visiting the Show did seem to be accessing the Periscope Broadcasts at least via the Twitter feed from the Username on the Chocolates!

[EDIT 21st July:  There were large numbers in the LiveStream Audience by the end of the Show – over 700 for the last broadcast ]

 

Finishing with some amusing screen shot showing middle-ages people whth Glo=Stick necklaces.

I’ll never forget wending our way down the Hill carrying the tent etc, winding through the woodland in the dusk, Glo-necklaces bobbing up and down in the distance…Sadly not on the Broadcast

 

The event went well with some good interaction and a reasonable audience in both ‘locations’, from 30- 159 on the stream…not that I’m counting! ( Ha!)

 

Final Show Preparations 4 and Public View

The chocolates arrived safely in Peckham yesterday, only to be eaten by all my colleagues, if Jonathan’s text is to be believed!

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The locations of the bowls and the distribution of the chocolates will be up to my colleagues so I have no real idea if they will be on plinths displayed as ‘artwork’ or scattered around more informally.

I’ve been distributing invitations to the Show and the Public View on Crouch Hill, around the various communities I work and socialise with, have posted some invitations and chocolates, and pushed some through friends’ letterboxes.

If people have been involved in some way with the project they will be invited as well as friends..so dog walkers, carers group, leisure artists,  ( you can see the enthusiasm!) geocache advisor, chocolatier, printer and courier……

I will also put some invitations in a map holder and fasten it to the Trig Point at the summit. Some of the people who have been interacting with the ‘building development‘ may be interested in coming….

I’ve also sent the usual email invitations to the Show in Camberwell and will circulate via Twitter and have a few chats on Periscope beforehand to invite regular followers.

I hope, on this occasion, to have a meeting of communities ; Crouch Hill- Camberwell- Periscope.

I also have a loose programme of events for viewers during the Show, ensuring that something is present on my Twitter feed and Periscope app ( where there will be interactive cuhatvia the Live Stream)  whilst the Show is Open.

The Public View is rather more ‘structured’ as the other events depend of people who have said they are interested in being involved being available on the day……..so below is ‘sort of a plan’.

Claire Winfield will be on an archaeological dig in Dorchester-THames but will be joining us by Periscope, and Martin Winfield will be watching on the desktop app and calling in on his mobile from ‘his’ mountain in Mid-Wales….or at least that’s the idea.All the events will be Live streamed via Periscope.

13th July

Prior to the event within 24 hrs of start of the Show. It is John Clare’s birthday (1793) and I will be reading  some of his poems about enclosure. The town of Banbury, here,  borders Northamptonshire where Clare lived and wrote.

I also plan to re-install Ordnance Survey  and read from the Wikipedia texts in the piece.

14th July  

The  Public View, at the summit of Crouch Hill, will take place simultaneously with the Private View at Camberwell.

I intend to perform a symbolic ritual of exchange of a Covenant of Salt. I will give visitors small hessian bags, hand made by an upholsterer in Poole, Dorset, from re-cycled hessian. The bags will contain salt. people will be asked to mix salt from their bag with salt in someone else’s. The grains can never be separated…..and so, a lasting bond is formed. This has some origins in Biblical Scriptures  but this is not why I have chosen it. It is also performed at weddings. The significance is the prescience of the old Salt Route, The Salt Way, which runs along side Crouch Hill and was used to transport salt from Droitwich to London. I feel it links up with many of the ancient salt routes which network across Europe and Asia in a similar way to networks and systems today.

There will also be Magic Slates which are a playful mimic Freud’s Mystic Writing Pads.

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I will take the wooden buildings previously used in this events here, as recently, the encroachment of housing development across the boundary to the area, formed by the Salt Way, has been of local concern.

There is also a link to Lefevbre’s thoughts on urbanism.IMG_3763 I will also take, as far as possible, all materials, props and remnants that I have used in previous actions and events, for re- mediation/ re- animation  through conversation during the Public View.

The Camberwell College invitations that I have adapted ask people to bring drink ,and their dog if they want. I cannot carry bottles there…but I will prove some refreshments ( and the chocolates)  as in a Potlatch ceremony of exchange or ‘gift’…

Most people ask “What it it rains”….well I will be in my tent… or under the nearby trees in my waterproof.

I may or may not leave my tent up for the duration of the Show as a longer- temporary occupation…….I haven’t made that decision yet.

‘Plan’

15th July :

Reading aloud from John Ruskin’s lecture  Work  delivered at the Working Men’s Institute Camberwell  in 1865,( which I think is now the South London Gallery……..?) to link my location with Camberwell.

16th and 17th July :

Any one, none  or more of these things……depending who is available and when. All are interchangeable.

Paul Mobbs, local Quaker historian and activist telling his history of Crouch Hill and the area.

A Skype chat with Juliet Henderson, the linguist  from Oxford Brookes University, I met on the 205 bus, discussing Derrida  and ‘differance’.

A resident of nearby Broughton Castle and relative of William Fiennes, (1st Viscount Saye and Sele (28 June 1582 – 14 April 1662) , English nobleman and politician during the English Civil War) talking about his knowledge of Crouch Hill.

Me reading aloud from various history books and novels about the area, possibly reading from Benjamin’s Arcades Projects,  or W G Sebold.

A visit from Jane and Richard, caretakers of the Reading Room, Croughton linking this project with my Research Paper.

Snakes and Ladders or Scrabble with a  local theme via Periscope

18th July:

A tribute to Edith  Eisler, who died on this day in 2011. A refugee from Vienna in 1940, musician and friend of my father’s, whose legacy has provided me with the funds to follow this course. Looking at her letters to my father during WWII and listening her play the violin.

Thank You.

19th July Reading the iChing and reading from Philip K Dick’s The Man in the High Castle.

That’s All Folks.

On the 20th July I will visit Camberwell for a Final Crit with the group and then go with Clara Duran to meet other artists for discussion about the wonderful Residency Opportunity in Sortland , Norway……!!!

Becoming a Creative Dementia Arts Professional

This Creative Dementia Arts Network Training Day wasn’t brilliant timing, as I really wanted to concentrate on the Final Show but I felt I couldn’t afford to miss it. I’d already passed -by any involvement with the Flourish mentoring Programme. Clare Carswell was there from Lights Up, who I’ve worked with in the past see below and several other community artists I know who work with people with dementia.DSC_4280 copy.jpg

It was a really valuable day  including roundtable sessions on Evaluation in Arts and Dementia Projects with Dr Kate Hamblin from the Oxford Institute of Population Ageing, and Funding and Opportunities from Maria Parsons CDAN CEO.

I also went along to a session with poet, John Killick of  Dementia Positive, which proved extremely useful as we had a fascinating discussion about the difference between reading aloud,  printed text, handwritten text, storytelling and how he creates his poems from fragments of conversation.

He also talked about the experience of FLOW, a psychological notion  which  Mihaly Csiksgentmihalyi  describes as the  creative moment when a person is completely involved in an activity for its own sake, see this TED Talk

https://embed-ssl.ted.com/talks/mihaly_csikszentmihalyi_on_flow.html

Final Show Preparation 3: Practical stuff

 

Glass- bowls

The glass -bowls are all washed and sparkling, then wrapped in several layers of bubble-wrap, packing materials and in boxes ready to go. A strange combination of my personal ‘identities ‘ were referenced by using these boxes, I realised …. and I forgot to mention the choice of glass rather than ceramic. Glass is an amorphous solid but exhibits an atomic structure close to that observed in a  supercooled liquid phase. I have chosen to work  with glass before as it is both fixed and mutable – appropriate for documentation of an action because of this temporal quality.

Chocolates

I  popped into town to buy the parcel tape and  went to see how Belflair were getting on with the chocolates.

They were all in the shop and Gillian ( below) was busy wrapping them in the foils!

 

Updates:

Wednesday 29th June: I took the glass parcels to Mail Boxes Etc ,  for Marian and Phil Cullen  to send to Wilson Road by courier.IMG_3732Screen Shot 2016-07-01 at 15.27.37

Thursday 30th June: Got back in time to pick up the chocs, all beautifully wrapped, ready for sending tomorrow morning. Gillian was very excited and pleased with the results. So was I. I  gave her some invitations for Belflair to the Public View on Crouch Hill on the Thursday 14th  and took some to Banbury Print, and Marian and Phil at MBE.

 

 

Friday 1st July: 

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Final Show Preparation 2

It was important for me to source the materials for the show as locally  as possible with connections to the specific local communities I work with and for them to link with the themes of my work in the project so far so linking  the various  communities here  with Camberwell.

I’ve been searching out bowls for display of the chocolates. I wanted to get most at the Self-Pick Farm at the bottom of Crouch Hill. They have Car- Boot sales there and I thought that was appropriate as the bowls will have a personal provenance. It’s been so wet that I don’t think the Car-Boots were held. Certainly when I got there everyone had gone home. There were some boxes of crockery, though, which apparently are collected from the ‘left-overs’ from the Car -Boots. Here they are full of water as I found them, and then, the ones I bought packed up at home. I also bought some from charity shops within Banbury’s Old Town. I have worked there for many years and, been an active member of the Old Town Association ,a trade organisation which supports and brings together local  independent traders. It also runs community events which I participate in as a community artist. Buying some of the crockery here links the threads of my practice and communities in which they operate.

The printers, Banbury Print and Design, are a small family-run business, also in the Old Town . They have printed the wrappers for the chocolates, 5 designs, 150 each. This  may be too many but I want to make sure that I have sufficient, not only for Camberwell, but also  to distribute locally as a link of the two communities and networks. There is an image of Banbury Print and Design’s premises below- but Nicola was not keen on having her photo included on the Blog! Funnily  enough I picked these up yesterday, Referendum Day 23rd June 2016, and then bumped into the owners on my way back home from the Polling Station. They were just walking down as a family. A coincidence….

Belflair, the chocolatier, is just across the road and up Church Lane. At the end of Church Lane is Ye Olde Reine Deer Inn, which apparently is where in the 15th century, Puritan Oliver Cromwell held court arranging future battles.

The founder & resident chocolatier, of Belflair  learnt his craft at chocolate / patisserie school in Brussels  and Antwerp.

I was concerned about selecting the most appropriate foils for the different designs, again that difficulty with the idea of branding. I’d decided to have one colour of foil for each image, 5 in all. Merv, (see below in the shop)  who also runs the business, showed me a selection and chose the ones she thought worked best. They all looked so good that I didn’t want to change anything!

Each glistening order served as a mount would to a picture, highlighting the images, as you can see. The idea of the ‘exhibition’ of the image was still there. Apparently I’m in good company as Belflair chocolates are used as promotions for several central London hotels. Merv was excited by the images. To her they looked essential English, ( or did she say British?…..)

Merv is from Finland, and the images made her think of British weather ( the umbrella) , family camping holidays ( tent) and the Duke of Edinburgh Award Scheme and also Glastonbury festival as that has just started. All those things coalescing together in just one short conversation. She then told me a story about how camping isn’t popular in Finland and why she thinks this is the case.

The chocolates are being made especially to order in their chocolate atelier in nearby Brackley! They should be ready by the end of next week.

I asked her to recommend a reliable local courier to get them to Peckham. They are just round the corner…

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Creative Dementia Arts Conference 2016

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This years conference was at St Hugh’s College, Oxford 14th and 15th April 2016.

My original proposal for this MA  ( as I remember it!) was  based on autobiographical and collective memory and I had some idea, I think, of linking my community -based work with my practice. I’ll explore how these links have developed and unravelled in another post but I’m including this resume of the conference to reference specific uses of digital technology and also a project I became aware of that I will follow up in the future, post-MA.

From a Networking Point of view the conference is always useful meeting with colleagues, Clare Carswell who is Lights Up Co-ordinator.

Lights up is a Monthly arts group for people with Dementia and their carers in West Oxfordshire. I have worked with the group on several occasions and work from the group was exhibited at an exhibition in January, curated and installed by Clare.

Hannah Cervenka ( who Co-ordinates Taking Part which helps to fund Community practice in the area) and Paula Bailey ( who I worked with on the Banbury Old Town Party community event for several years).  Both are Arts Development Officers for Cherwell District Council,  Karey Morley, who facilitates the ‘Times Gone By’ Reminiscence group at  Banbury Museum were also there and I had a great discussion about Community Practice with Pam Foley, sculptor amongst others.

Frames of Mind

The key elements of the Conference for me were the Workshop by Salmagundi Films , a not for profit arts organisation founded in 2004 by Zoe Flynn and Bo Chapman and based in Stratford, East London

Their workshop highlighted their use of iPads for people with dementia in care homes, framesofmind_300.png

“Frames Of Mind® (FOM) is our concept of using Stop Frame Animation as a therapeutic communication tool. With Animation anything can happen. It is a creative process which encourages the use of visual metaphors, to think outside the box, and this liberation from the ‘literal’ can enable participants to explore and communicate potentially difficult or sensitive issues.”

There is an article published in Dementia Care which gives further insight into their work.

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I have tried to introduce Google Maps as a Reminiscence tool but have limited success. Working as a sole practitioner is  restrictive unless I work 1:1 or 1:2 which isn’t possible in the places where I work or with the groups that I facilitate, at the moment.

In the case of Frames of Mind there was funding to include Care staff in the project for training and supply of iPads to the homes for (in theory) a sustainable project. This goes back to the need discussed in a past post about working as an individual rather than a company…for funding and commissioning purposes.

For the future this may be the only way for me to go as a Community Artist……

We worked through the process of making a personal portrait and also saw how Stop Frame animation could used to make short autobiographical films for  people with dementia using personal objects or photos.

I don’t have an iPad but will invest in one, play around with the drawing apps and some stop-frame  and introduce the technology to some individuals and staff in the groups I work with. Too good an opportunity to miss. Again it will have to wait a little while.

The hand- held quality of the iPad really helps make the experience intimate and personal. Much more so than a lap-top which  can  seem too threatening to much older people.

UAL and Dementia Research

In one of the (many) leaflets I picked up There was a call for Papers for the Royal Society for Public Health Conference in 2017 on the Arts and Dementia. For the therapeutic nature of the arts to be recognised and researched is  a huge leap. The Research is both Qualitative and Quantitative which means it  can be used to attract funding and help reduce other costs! Dr. Hannah Zeilig from London College of Fashion, UAL is one of the Organising Committee for the Conference.

Again something to Research when the MA is  completed  to  consolidate my personal and community practice.