Intro

The image is a predominantly black rectangle with a small round peephole view on the right hand side. Through the rounded hole which is slightly faded at the edges you can see a closed eye, an eyebrow, a nose and the top of a lip topped with a mustache. It's almost an image of the artist!

Hey, I’m Hamza welcome to my studio. I’m a self-taught multimedia artist and researcher. I’m an able-bodied male-conditioned, postcolonial person. My work is informed by continuous conversations with the people I love as much as any reading, listening and observing.

I’m using this residency to resume an investigation I started some time ago (before getting distracted by another project). Mark of My Departure (MOMD) is preoccupied with the South Asian diasporic experience. The centerpiece of the work is a 7 minute visual collage set to an original composition.

I will use the time afforded to me in the residency to continue the collection and tessellation of related postcolonial images and ideas. I am aiming to produce a supporting body of work so that the video is held within an expanded context.

When you step into my studio, you should smell my aunties homemade garam masala slowly infusing into fried onions on the stovetop. Poke around the work you find and if you have any questions or comments do not hesitate to leave them in the comments section.

Sending love,

Hamza

A Holy Place

Black and White Pyramid. Kofi is inscribed inside the pyramid.
@Pyramidkofi

I am Amaqhawekazi Emafini Malamlela(She/They), a Ghanaian-South African multidisciplinary Artist. Welcome to my shrine. As an artist, what influences my work is the deep sense of spirituality, identity and sexuality. 

Dance, Theatre, Performance Art, visual art and sound previously shaped the artwork I created. I am currently interested in exploring ideas of Space-Time and what it is to have a body and ritual as a process of creating sacred spaces. This residency is the opportunity to further experiment with film and how to translate sacred space onto digital platforms. 

This is a sacred space where I will reinvigorate my creative practice, taking a leap on new concepts and digging deeper with research. I will share with you Trumu Fetish, an artwork dedicated to bringing forth a Transgender deity. Trumu Fetish is a multidisciplinary artwork building a world of faithfulness. Visual art is key to the longevity of the belief and the castration of patriarchal symbols. Durational Performance Art: through the body summon the spirit of the deity. And through literature give rise to intimate comprehension.

Please, take a moment and join me as I unpack my creative process with you. You can expect video, text, images and weekly updates throughout this residency. You are welcome to leave comments and questions. Again, welcome to my shrine.

Tongues

If I told you that my name should be spelt Istabraq but that at the borders of this country, those deciding the status of my family using a language which struggles to identify it, didn’t have patience enough to actually say.my.name…

Would you believe me?

Estabrak. It’s official. I mean, English tongues can say it.

Iss-tub-bruq is how it’s pronounced. And A rough silk only found in heaven is it’s meaning.

>> a reading of the text above for those who need it<<

THOUGHT EXPERIMENT

mixed media collage artwork of multiple figures, objects and symbols interacting in a visual poetry.

Often before starting a piece I’ll do a rough sketch with notes of ideas for it. Looking through these rough sketches I felt the end piece always lost some sincere venerableness that the early sketches had, as if I was uninhibited  knowing no one would ever see these rough takes. I wondered what a balance between the sincere sketches and polished final artwork would look like. Which is where the sketchy erratic almost unfinished feel to the piece came from. This piece is like a visual diary, a live stream of my thoughts at the time, even going as far as including the tools I used to create the piece, as if this was a blank canvas I was projecting my thoughts on to. While creating this piece I felt off balance, thinking back to regrets of the past, or worrying about the future instead of being balanced in the present moment. being a self employed artist comes with many pros and cons which I explored in this piece. The main type of commission I work on are album artworks for musicians, these artworks need to be the perfect square to fit the size of the album cover, I started to feel boxed in my this same type of canvas with fears of repeating myself, using up my creativity on others work, losing love for what I do, but needing to make money. Even with my personal artworks, I wondered if I was creating as a distraction so I didn’t have to stop, be still and just think. I felt I was in a never ending cycle with all these different versions of myself (the freelancer, the artist, past and future) all colliding in an anxiety filled mess. despite this piece being personal, I felt drawing myself would instantly make the piece about one thing. me. But I wanted anyone to be able to project themselves onto these figures, which is why I often leave faces quite abstract to detach any one identity.  Identity was another thing I was thinking a lot about, and how being a POC growing up in England is a kind of psychological obstacle everyone has to go through. Growing up being taught to love and respect a culture that doesn’t do the same back, and how it can create inner conflict from early ages. Despite going to some fairly dark and painful places with this piece, It still has a fun childish energy about it. Often when I’m working I feel I’m doing a balancing act between my inner child who’s the artist and my inner adult who’s the editor that cuts the fat and gives the piece more intention. So I think this childish optimistic feel comes from me naturally not taking myself too seriously, wanting to create art to be fun, enjoyed and give the viewer the feeling of being a child looking at something with curious wide eyes. Despite art being tired up with all these different aspects of my life like my work, passion, self worth, identity. Creating this piece reminded me to just enjoy/embrace the process and have fun with it. 

Introduction video with Jess Starns

Transcript:

[00:00:00] Jess: I’m Jess Starns and my creative practice is participatory collaborative and inclusive with a focus on disability, neurodiversity, or history. It is also multi-disciplinary with materials and approaches formed by the theme of the project. I have an interest in using digital technology creatively and finding new tools to create art.

I am neurodivergent and due to my dexterity, I’m always looking for new, innovative ways to create art that is accessible to me. A big part of my creative practice is finding accessible tools to collaborate with others, to create art. That doesn’t seem like you are creating art. I also have a background in working in museums with young people and with communities.

A few examples of work I have created before is Bungaroosh, projection mapping piece. Bungaroosh is a composite building material, mostly used in Brighton from the mid 18th to 19th centuries. And Bungaroosh is made of broken bricks, cobblestones, flint, pebbles, sand with chalk and set in hydraulic line. I projection mapped onto stones film and photographs of buildings made from Bungaroosh.

During the first two lockdowns, I organised virtual walks to break down the feeling of isolation whilst we were all social distancing. Using Google street view and Zoom I went on virtual walks with others. I asked the participants if they would like to share places that are important to them, they are missing or places they would like to visit. 

The 23rd of July 2020 marked the 50th anniversary of the education of handicapped children’s act in 1970, the act marked for the first time or children of compulsory school age had a right to an education. I gathered audio recordings about people’s experiences of the education system to produce an audio piece telling these stories.

During my residency, I would like to explore the Sussex landscape. 

Audio description of photographs in the film

Intro

Hi there,

My name is Rebekah Ubuntu. I am a multidisciplinary artist, musician and university lecturer. My practice explores speculative fiction through a range of disciplines, particularly, sound art, performance, the moving image and mixed reality.

PROJECTS YOU MIGHT BE INTERESTED IN

My work ‘Despair Hope and Healing: Three Movements for Climate Justice’ is available to experience in augmented reality app Unfolding Shrines which you can find here. 

My audio art project ‘Autism and the City: a Sonic Diary’ is due to launch on the BBC next month so I’ll post that here once it’s ready.

You are warmly welcomed to my studio. 

HOW I HOPE TO USE MY RESIDENCY

I’m hoping to use my residency to REFLECT.

I’ll be reflecting on my:

  1. work to date
  2. practice before and during the pandemic

WHY REFLECTION?

My life and creative practice have undergone some major pivots since 2020. My last in-person commission before the pandemic was at Tate Modern in December 2019. I performed my work ‘Despair, Hope and Healing: Three Movements for Climate Justice’ and gave a talk about this work, which featured an excerpt from an interview in the 90s with Black science fiction writer Octavia Butler discussing the speculative impacts of climate change in the 2020s. Now nearly two years into this decade, I am feeling a need to process.

Looking back, I can see that 2020 and the years preceding didn’t leave much room for respite. This residency provides an opportunity for me to reorient my time and energy towards self-reflection, self-nurturance and self-celebration.

I’ll be pausing to be with the themes in my work, particularly belonging, healing and queering as well as disability and climate justice. I’ll be sitting with the scores, texts, and projects that have been on my heart and giving them the time I’ve not had until now.

It feels good to be here, sharing space and reflecting for a month. Please feel welcome to look around my studio and get in touch using comments if you’d like.

Hope you enjoy your visit,

Rebekah

Intertwined – exhibition of work by June 21 artists

Three images in a composite represent three artists' work. Top left: Seo Hye Lee's film Sound of Subtitles - a hand is inside a stone coloured round pot on a spinning wheel, the insides of the pot are shiny. A subtitle reads: sound of reminiscing. Bottom left: Linda Stupart's film Watershed 2.0 - green plants are growing in the foreground, they look like tall weeds. In the background a blurred image of a person in white, a curled claw with red nails is held ahead of the person. Right of the image: Laura Lulika's Body Building film - a sad android sits in a blue room on a blue block, women's heads grow out of the android's back, their body is made up of body massager tools, which are grey, black, purple and pink plastic. A glowing pink ball is held in the android's scalp massager hand.
Artworks from top left, clockwise: Seo Hye Lee, [Sound of Subtitles], 2021; Laura Lulika, Body Building, 2021; Linda Stupart, Watershed 2.0: Pandemic CYOA Cyberspace Edition 2021, 2021 – images courtesy of the artists.

Intertwined is our new exhibition on Vital Capacities, presenting new works by resident artists – Seo Hye Lee, Laura Lulika and Linda Stupart. The works have been commissioned in collaboration with our partners: Film London Artists’ Moving Image Network (FLAMIN), Phoenix and University of Salford Art Collection. Intertwined opens on 22 July. See the exhibition now by clicking here.

Future of Live Captioning

Remember when the Google glass came out years ago and ended up being not so popular? At the time, I wasn’t aware that the product had been designed to include the function of Live Captioning; while researching this I found this video of the product being used in a quiet setting.

Youtube Video of two people testing Google Glass’s function of Live Captioning. Closed Captions are available on this video.

There are many great resources you can use to transcribe speech to text on apps/browsers online. These resources work by either turning on the live transcribing function or uploading prerecorded audio files – a few I have used in the past are Webcaptioner, Google Transcribe App, Descript. (Each mentioned names are all hyper-linked which will lead you to its own websites)

Continue reading “Future of Live Captioning”

Watershed (the work so far)

This video (click above ^^) documents the first part of my walk down the River Cole, as well as a lot of anxieties present in the first lockdown in 2020 in the UK. I made the video for So Remember the Liquid Ground , an exhibition curated by Benjamin Darby, Yoojin Kang, Akis Kokkinos, Angelina Li, Lenette Lua and Louise Nason as part of the MA Curating Contemporary Art Programme Graduate Projects 2020, Royal College of Art in partnership with Gasworks.

Aubree Penny – a friend and also curator – commissioned me to perform Some Men Have Mistaken Me for Death in a sex workers graveyard in London, AND commissioned the film version of After the Ice, the Deluge for An Alarming Specificity at Haverford College in the USA. London

Aubree wrote an audio transcription of Watershed, which you can read here: https://vitalcapacities.com/3108/

And a visual description, which you can read here: https://vitalcapacities.com/3110/

Interview with resident artist Laura Lulika

Jamie Wyld (Vital Capacities’ director): Thanks for being part of the Vital Capacities residency programme! Can you say a little about yourself and your work, perhaps in relation to what you’re thinking about doing during the residency?

Thanks for inviting me. I am a sick and disabled artist, researcher and community cultural worker. My practice challenges the preconceptions of what it is to be sick and disabled. It acts as a reminder that sick and disabled bodies are actively political even in states of what might look like physical inactivity to someone who is able. In reality, ‘resting’ isn’t really rest if you don’t have a choice.

Continue reading “Interview with resident artist Laura Lulika”

02 The Beginning: Two video works in the past two years that related to this project #Utopia #Satellite #Displacement

I’ve been working on this project for the past two years, during the time I made two videos that related to the subject. As I mentioned before, I couldn’t digest the subject into one simple work.
The Journey begins at the end of 2017 after I finished a project called “The Yellow Snake Is Waiting”. As usual, I look inward to see what is that thing I want to express in the form of Art. I started to paint. I painted some sea turtles and artificial satellite

A painting on canvas. Acrylic painted three sea turtles. Background is green and black gradient with three white sea turtle in the center with only outlines.
Acrylic painted three sea turtles.
Acrylic on canvas painting. Black background with dark blue green in the middle looks like sea and a human like artificial satellite in dark blue on the left top.
Acrylic painted artificial satellite.

◐◒◑◓ 6 months past ◴ ◵ ◶ ◷

In 2018 during my 6-month residency at Trestle Art Space, I was thinking about the relationship between sea turtles and artificial satellites. 20000 miles under the sea caught my eye, one of the main character Captain Nemo, he lost his family back to his hometown now he traveled the underworld took it as his land. This reminds me of the idea of Utopia, my journey from Taiwan to the United State. My research shifted from artificial satellite to Utopia…

Continue reading “02 The Beginning: Two video works in the past two years that related to this project #Utopia #Satellite #Displacement”

Landscape [Design & Development]

The initial plan was to create a loop map in order to represent the continues endeavour we find our selves in searching and freeing fish. But over the residency period I pursued on an end goal. That end being the Tree of life!
In older versions of tuner we have been deprived of Vegetation, leaving a more sterile approach. But this has been hard as I love trees. And now with this new reincarnation of Tuner and its updated water system allowing the ability of more vertical landscapes (rather than water line dependent), evolves for more irregular and hopefully interesting environments.

Continue reading “Landscape [Design & Development]”