A note on: Museum of Futures Visual Poetry exhibition

Very happy to be curating this exhibition in Surbiton next month. It brings together colleagues at Kingston University from multiple departments, students, alumnus and local professional poets and artists. 

Opening night, with a camarade reading, is February Thursday 23rd. All info here www.theenemiesproject.com/futures

I'm also still taking submission for the exhibition until February 5th www.theenemiesproject.com/opencallfutures

A note on: Jerwood Open Forest exhibition opening

A privilege to be part of the 2016 Jerwood Open Forest Exhibition at the Jerwood Space in London, thanks to my collaborator, David Rickard, and the staff at Jerwood, who have all been exceptionally generous in supporting my work.

David was shortlisted earlier this year for the project and invited me then to work with him in producing new texts for his proposal, and as the process of the project moves towards the award being granted, the Jerwood Space hosts an exhibition with representations of the works being proposed by each artist. David created a wholly new work for the exhibition, conceptually connected to the Returnings idea, that saw him source an out of commission memorial bench and gently dissect it into its constituent parts. I then wrote a poem / text responding to this work, a word for each piece of the exhibited bench skeleton. My words are beautifully projected in the gallery against a wall, becoming a kinetic poem, the entire text on loop, revealed over exactly three minutes.

The launch event was lovely, so great to spend time in that space, meet the other artists, and see my work exhibited in a gallery I often visit and admire. David and I also had a chance to appear on Resonance FM talking about our work on the day of the opening. A wonderful collaboration that I hope spawns lots more work with David in the near future.

A note on: Open Forest Exhibition at Jerwood Visual Art

November 2nd to December 11th at Jerwood Visual Arts, London.
171 Union Street. Bankside. SE1 0LN / jerwoodvisualarts.org
Gallery hours: Monday – Friday 10am – 5pm / Saturday & Sunday 10am – 3pm

I'm pleased to have a newly commissioned text responding to, and collaborating with, the work of artist David Rickard on exhibition at Jerwood Visual Arts as part of their remarkable Open Forest project. The work explores the notion of dissection, the breaking down of things into their component parts and the fragmentation of recollection, all expressed by way of a deconstructed memorial bench. The installation is part of a wider work entitled Returnings www.stevenjfowler.com/returnings

The Jerwood Open Forest exhibition brings together the work of David Rickard and the four other shortlisted artists for 2016, with new bodies of work spanning installation, film, ceramics and performance on display. Jerwood Open Forest is a collaboration between Jerwood Charitable Foundation and Forestry Commission England with the support of Arts Council England. http://jerwoodopenforest.org/

A note on: Forumstadtpark: Graz, Austria - June 2016

The Forum Stadtpark in Graz is a unique place. I’d heard about it for a few years before I met those who mastermind the institution in 2015. Not a gallery or venue, more of a communal centre in the heart of Graz, for all arts and all kinds of discussions and meetings, set the idyllic second city of Austria, it has a reputation for supporting some of the most avant-garde work in Europe. The word they seem to use, the warm hearted, playful, endlessly hospitable people who seem to wander in and out of the stadtpark, is transgressive or provocative, alongside everything all else that might be interested in the now or the future. A chance to visit here, to speak and perform was granted to me by virtue of the CROWD omnibus project and a two day symposium called Text World World Text, bringing poets and organisers from all over Europe. The symposium was led by Max Hofler, a friend and a text artist I admire so much and was essentially about poetry and politics, and whether there was a connection between the two.

I've written a whole webpage dedicated to the trip with detailed travelogue. Please visit http://www.stevenjfowler.com/graz

1000 Proverbs

The Liverpool Camarade event on Feb 18th 2015 will also serve as the launch for my new collaborative publication, 1000 Proverbs, written with the brilliant Tom Jenks and published by Knives Forks & Spoons press. I've been excited about this for a very long time. Tom and I have read from the work on multiple occasions and every time people seem to enjoy it. It is because he is talented and funny.

Soon the book will be available here: http://www.knivesforksandspoonspress.co.uk/

& you can see some of the many times Tom & I have shared our proverbial wisdom over the last few years here:

The cover is by the artist Theo Kaccoufa.

ENTER+ Repurposing in Electronic Literature at Kingston Uni

Had a grand day at Kingston Uni with Zuzana Husarova, my fellow TRYIE collectivist, visiting from Bratislava and Maria Mencia, who teaches in the media dept with a focus on E-literature, sharing some found text poetry, and discussing reappropriation and technology. Most importantly this special seminar with Maria's students and the wonderful Mariusz Pidarski also presenting his work (an amazing adaptation of Bruno Schulz into videogame format amongst that), was the launch of a journal which seems to be a brilliant summation of much of the pioneering work Maria and Zuzana have done, exhibiting in Kosice as well as commissioning a myriad of articles. I read from Minimum Security Prison Dentistry and Recipes, couching my use of found text as a way of actualising my poetic engagement with the world of language around me, emphasising my work as the result of a refractive, reflective process, rather than an originary one, right to the roots of that thinking, and that the use of the language of the internet is a necessary engagement with the language world I live in. Moreover, it is a very specific language world, one that is founded on community and generosity but is in fact the ultimate example of the ethical notion that what a person does when no one is looking is who they are, morally, as people on the net are regularly awful en masse because they are relatively anonymous. So my use of net text is really an ethical injunction, attempting to show we need new tools of discussion to tackle new realms of language, and how throwaway it can be. I also emphasised how this wasn't a strict practise, but blended ambiguously with other writing methods and approaches. I finished by reading some trolling text, my poem Black Pepper Enchilladas, which finishes with fuck you, fuck you all.= We all then had crisps and a long pleasant chat about the potential of technology and spying and such. 

Exhibiting w/ Anatol Knotek at the Text Festival, Bury

www.textfestival.com A unique and admirable fusion of exhibitions and events, celebrating text based art and vanguard poetry, the Text festival is a beacon that lights up Bury, and has done quite a few times over the last decade, drawing in some of the most interesting writers/artists in the world. I'm happy to say, for the Dark Would exhibition, edited and curated by Philip Davenport, the amazing Anatol Knotek, my long term collaborator, has produced beautiful visual poetry work based on our collaborative exchanges for the Dark Would anthology ebook, the interviews in fact, that we provided for the digital version. You can see a few pictures, taken by Philip, of the work below. 

The Text Festival in Bury is an internationally recognised event investigating contemporary language art (poetry, text art, sound and media text, live art). Opening on 2 May 2014, the next Festival will be its fourth manifestation and run into July 2014.

Under the Volcanoes - an inside architecture of a new publication by Alex Latter of Grapsas press

One of the many beautiful things I brought back with me from Mexico city at the end of 2013 was a brand new collaboration with Holly pester, someone whose work Ive respected for years, and whom Id become associated with through my events but never actually written / performed with. We rectified that in Mexico, sharing stage for over an hour, and writing Under the Volcanoes, a work of pure, warped homage to Malcolm Lowry, who hung over my every perception of Mexico having read Under the Volcano, Lunar Caustic and his others works stuck on a bus in Croatia many years before. Holly read the book in Mexico and we fused our responses into a dialogue text that takes found lines and new lines and disjunctions and exchanges and soups them. When we returned, with a text over around 200 exchanges, Alex Latter was kind enough to support us in developing a boutique 2014 publication of the work, using the Bodleian press of all things, through his Grapsas imprint. The collaboration is to be published as a unique pocketed, jacketed, filleted objet d'art, and recently Alex was kind enough to send out some notes on the process, which are of real interest I believe, so Ive posted some below:

"i’ve worked out the setting i’ll be using—it’s about 14 lines per page, and they’ll be printed landscape. the lines, especially steven’s, are quite long, and i wanted to preserve their length rather than cramp them up over several line-breaks.

i took the first imprint of the first full page of type i’ve set. i thought originally that have the text on the verso page right-aligned and recto left-aligned would look quite good, as the lines would then look like they’re running into and out of the gutter respectively. i was also hoping it might achieve a visual effect equivalent to the craggy geology of central mexico—my memory of flying into mexico city was the mountains and volcanoes (and also my brother projectile vomiting over the three rows in front of him). 

however, i didn’t think this effect worked very well: this was what the first impression looked like:

i

i think the effect is lost in the length of the lines: it might have worked better if the lines were shorter, but the effect is too diffuse and not like the igneous crush i was hoping for.

also, as you can see from this, typesetting throws up all sorts of interesting language problems because of foul casing (i.e. the wrong letters in the wrong part of the font). my favourite here is ‘some horribble disasher’, closely followed by ‘founber and fail’. this sort of mis-reading/setting reminded me a bit of that poem you had in ‘here comes everyone’ anthology, holly. and also the fact that the line at the end of othello—‘like the base indian who grew away a pearl richer than all his tribe’—is given as ‘base judean’ in some texts, because of a foul-cased ’u’. it’s like the language keeps wanting to escape being set down, right until the very last moment.

sbut i reset it from the left anyway, and it now looks like this:


i’ve left an em-space at the beginning of each run-on line, which i think draws attention to the text’s reiterations, without it being catechistic.

so having worked out that setting, i’m expecting the full text to come in at around 23-24 pages. (13 for steven’s, 8 for holly’s)

this is a very large project for this kind of type-setting. i’m going to suggest that i print it into two volumes, as this will make the project quicker and also resolve the logistical problems of setting this number of pages."

david kelly / vispo / 3am magazine

i acknowledge my longstanding relationship to him as a collaborator, but the work here is soooo good. so good. so amazing to host it at 3am, to have that facility, today, is a privilegio.

the poetic is so very much akin to the sensibility of his art, which itself would require an essay to understanding in the writing of - a true modern, a premodern contemporary, a KoKoschKA, A SCHIELE of London now, so exciting to see the visual lie with the text.

having forgotten where to sleep
that i am responsible for you

http://erkembode.com/

http://www.3ammagazine.com/3am/david-kell/