April 2023

Hiya readers,

Hope you’re all doing well out there. Alright here ta. Been working on a few bits so here’s the latest.

Angels crying on my tongue – video

Really happy to be able to share this video work put together by Harry Wheeler as part of the Refuge from the Ravens exhibition which is currently at Bury Art Gallery and I believe it’s making it’s way to London to the Houses of Parliament for a week fairly soon. I’m a bit hazy on the details but will post when I get them, hoping the work sparks some action in politician’s heads after they see it all.

Info about the video:

The Refuge from the Ravens project was a 21st Century rewrite of Lyrical Ballads by Wordsworth and Coleridge, made with over 100 people affected by homelessness, together with other vulnerable people in NW England 2021-23. The 1798 original featured stories of poor people walking the roads of a country in turmoil. Today, 200 years later, homelessness and social inequality are still with us and on the rise, the gap between rich and poor is huge and many tumbling into the void…

The film, made with collaboratively film-maker Harry Wheeler, tours homeless-related sites in Manchester, Lancaster and Morecambe, guided by project participants. Shadowing one of Wordsworth’s regular walks close to Dove Cottage, it simultaneously shows aspects of street homelessness.

The soundscape you can hear, made with sound artist Sophie Cooper, was developed over several months in 2021-22 as the Ravens workshops were running in support venues, on city streets and at Wordsworth Grasmere, bringing together interviews, poems, songs, snippets of conversation and surrounding ambient sounds. Featuring Andy, Freddie, Justin and Ste, mobile phone footage was shot by Big Issue vendors and other people on the streets of Manchester and Lancaster.

“I am not a haunting Nobody knows, they just keep on walking Right through me.”

— Wordsworth re-written by homeless Britain —


Read more about the project here

Immersive Watergrove

There have been some great developments on this project that I’m working on with Babs Smith. So far we have surveyed the Watergrove Reservoir site a couple of times and worked on the positioning of where the augmented reality / audio sculpture triggers will sit around the space. We want to show the site as it exists now with a particular focus on how our local water supply is so impacted by climate change and subsequent drought issues which will reoccur every summer. As the annual drought arrives, the outline of the village of Watergrove emerges bringing back memory of that area. I wonder what their summers would have been like compared to now on the tops of the windy landscape. I’m currently looking into the history of local brass band culture in LIttleborough and Rochdale, have read about a procession of brass walking through the now watery village – trying to formulate a piece that imagines these scenes.

Wall around the side of the res built up with stone fragments from people’s homes:

Tor Festival presents… Mike Gangloff!

Really happy to be hosting my friend Mike Gangloff here in Todmorden on the 19th May when he will perform at the Golden Lion. Truly an honour and it’s been too long since we last saw each other so good times will be had. Tickets available on Skiddle

Cool, that’ll do for now.. all best and hope you have a good Easter / Ramadan / Passover / bit of time off! S x