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Posts Tagged ‘scotland’

OPENING NIGHT: dis-place this collection@The Glue Factory

In Community, film, Performance, poetry on April 12, 2011 at 6:34 pm

Opening Night April 30th poster by Ming Tse

Come and join us as we make our first ever journey west and open an exciting fortnight-long event at Glasgow’s infamous Glue Factory artspace! 

dis-place THIS COLLECTION: OPENING NIGHT

Venue: The Glue Factory, 22 Farnell Street, Glasgow, G4 9SE  See map less than 10 min walk from St George’s Cross SPT.

Preview:

6pm (Open to Public)
Self-organisation in Education: with Stevphen Shukaitis and Glasgow Open School
Author of Imaginal Machines: Autonomy & Self-Organization in the Revolutions of Everyday Life, Stevphen Shukaitis and Glasgow Open School welcomes all to workshop to discuss the installation of thiscollection and present the first in the series of two events aiming to bring together people interested in holding experiments in education this Summer and anyone struggling with ideas and practices of learning, democracy, collectivity, curatorship, culture and knowledge production.

We aim to combine space for open discussion of ideas and pragmatic arrangements for collaboration. For more information visit
http://glasgowopenschool.com/blog/?p=1788
http://www.autonomedia.org/node/94

830pm -1130pm

HEADLINING:

+ BLOCHESTRA: innovative and experimental noise-makers — “a band to turn the conventional music experience on its head.” adapt poems into song, Kate Charles’ “Cables” is given a new spin.

Zorras Film Poetry Vocal velvetness photo by Evi Tsiligaridou

+ ZORRAS:poetry-music-video weirdness fusion. With megaphones adapt Brian McCabe’s thiscollection poem “It”.

A.P & Swedo: Herbalist & Farmhand anarchic word workers this image by Swedo (Sean Cartwright) says it all.

+ A.P & Swedo Anarchic duo jam in a polymusical moon symphony of wordage favourites and new work inspired by this collection poems.

ALSO ON SHOW:

+ Graffiti from up and coming graphic designer Ming Tse who made the awesome opening night poster.

+ a huge and stunning mural by illustrators Helen Askew and Laura Mossop

+ this collection’s 100 poems and film responses collected so far.

this collection in Glasgow is preparing to ease into a more democratic DIY phase and has developed an open installation with Glasgow Open School to prove that culture or creative endeavours need YOUR input, not over rely on funding bodies or enthusiastic volunteers but everyone. Just as democracy needs to be practiced or it is lost – if there is no input from you or dialogue, NOTHING will or can happen.

If you have already submitted a poem or a film or an adaptation the Open Schedule on the Glasgow Open School blog is YOUR platform.

REFRESHMENTS:

Summery wheat beer, honey and heather ale, strawberry cider and some lager.

TRANSPORTATION:

Trains do group discounts half price for a group of 4 and the 3rd travels free in a group of 3 (a return ticket costs £11.40). Last train home is 1130pm.
The last underground is 1115pm, and the venue is less than 10 mins from St Georges Cross.

ANY QUESTIONS? FILM@THISCOLLECTION.ORG

Click “attending” on our Facebook event!

WHAT IS THIS COLLECTION…?

this collection began life as a modest bouquet of 100 short poems on the subject of Edinburgh. Authors included all manner of Edinburgh residents from high school kids to University professors, and over the course of the past two years, their work has acted as a foundation upon which artists and creatives from all walks of life have built collaborative responses to the poems. Thus far, the project has primarily attracted short films, but more recently the artistic responses have included works as diverse as street art installations, handmade zines and improvised music scores to live screenings.

this collection has hosted a plethora of community art events in Edinburgh, too – including a memorable poets’ and filmmakers’ speed-dating night, a huge multi-media showcase in the cavernous McEwan Hall, and an experimental ‘friendly’ poetry slam.

The project will adopt The Glue Factory – an abandoned industrial space turned arts venue – as its temporary home from 30th April to 14th May as part of a GSA postgraduate show. Glasgow residents and visitors are invited to peruse a wide and vibrant showcase of creative work inspired by the original this collection 100 poems.

We hope to see you there!

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this collection friendly slam: the fallout

In Performance, poetry on April 6, 2011 at 10:53 am

Cat Dean
Slam virgin Cat Dean wows the slam crowd at the Banshee Labyrinth.

I’ll admit – I was worried about how this event might go down. My aims for the slam were manifold. Firstly, I wanted to drag a few more “page” poets (i.e., poets who are normally more at home publishing in journals and books, and reading at traditional stand up readings) kicking and screaming into the performance scene – mainly to show them that hey, it’s really not that different or scary and look, there’s good poetry to be found here. Secondly, I wanted to get the message across to the performance crowd (although they do tend to be more receptive to stuff outside their own field of literary experience) that page poets can be fun, and that they can – sometimes, at least – perform. Mostly, I wanted to try and narrow the divide that – in spite of the best efforts of fabulous folk like Jenny Lindsay, who has been organising very open and approachable performance events for years – still stubbornly exists between page and stage in the Scottish poetry community.

As I say, this was by no means the first friendly slam that’s ever taken place. Indeed, I’m proud of the fact that Scotland seems to be at the forefront of new and innovative thinking when it comes to slamming and other performance poetry events. Over the past few years there have been one or two “sotto voce” or “quiet” slams about the place – the now-sadly-defunct VoxBox held a “quiet” slam specifically for page poets, and the Scottish Poetry Library also did a sotto slam in 2009, which yours truly here somehow managed to win. Working in this tradition, I wanted to further mess around with the traditional slam format, and by doing so, I hoped to chip away at some of the myths and misconceptions surrounding the phenomenon.

The main difference was in the scoring of the poems. I’m defiantly against the “traditional” slam scoring method, which involves the audience getting involved in rating each poet. In the US, where slams are always well-attended and often patronised by folk who are not either a) poets or b) friends of poets, I can see how this system could work… but in Scotland, where almost everyone in the crowd is a friend/enemy/editor/publisher/workshop buddy/love interest of at least one of the performers, it makes for skewed results. The poet with the most mates wins, to put it simply. The other traditional slam scoring option is the use of a judging panel. But this was a this collection event, and this collection is very much anti-hierarchy, anti-quality-control, anti-curation. To gather a panel of “esteemed judges” for the poets to impress was really not our style.

Instead, we decided to let the poets score each other. Each poet received a personalised score-card, which bore the names of all the poets performing, except for their own – so they could not award points for their own performance. Scores were out of 30 (10 for content, 10 for delivery, and 10 for that individual’s particular “overall opinion”), and recorded at the end of every poet’s performance. At the end of each round, all the scorecards were collected up and the scores anonymously tallied. Poets with high scores progressed through the ranks; poets with lower scores fell by the wayside – but everything was on a democratic, peer-review basis, and thanks to the wide variety of poets performing, we were confident that there would be little-to-no bias.

The scoring system did throw up some issues. Most obviously, it was a logistical nightmare. It wasn’t until I received the first batch of scores at the end of the first round that I realised: I was going to have to add up sixteen sets of scores out of 30 for sixteen poets within fifteen minutes. In round one alone, poets were competing for up to 580 points… that’s a hell of a lot of adding up. Fortunately, I had the help of two glamorous calculator-wielding assistants (my poor, long-suffering flatmates), and we managed, but if I were organising another event of this type, a more simplistic scoring method would have to be devised!

Secondly, several of the poets told me afterwards that they’d found the quick-fire nature of the scoring rather tricky. With only about 30 seconds or so between poets, they had to make snap decisions about the numbers they entered for each. Some said they appreciated this – it prevented them from getting bogged down in thinking and re-thinking their decision, and it meant that their responses were instinctive. Others said they found the whole thing rather stressful, and would have liked a bit more time to reflect on what they’d heard in order to give a score that they felt was reasoned and fair. Next time, I just need to spraff a bit more between performers, I think!

Finally, a couple of people said afterwards that they felt the poets-only scoring left the audience a feeling a little bit surplus-to-requirements. I was really pleased with the enthusiasm the audience were willing to give for each performance in spite of it being quite a long night, but I did note that things cooled off a little in the middle. I’m now thinking that perhaps a compromise of some scoring being done via audience reaction and some done by just the poets may be an interesting avenue to explore.

Otherwise, I was really pleased with the outcome of the scoring experiment, and really interested to see how poets reacted to other performances. Some folk were clearly being very harsh across the board, with some poets scoring certain performances with a big fat zero and never venturing into figures much higher than 6. Others seemed more than happy to dish out perfect 10s across the board to poets they really liked, and – my favourite part of the adding-up process – many of the scorecards came back with doodles, marginalia or explanatory notes decorating their margins. Overall, scoring was extremely close. Numerous folk have noted in their feedback about the evening that poets like Andrew Philip and Dave Coates deserved to move up to the second round, and I agree on both counts. However, it was literally the odd mark here and there that separated 10th place from 11th and 11th from 12th, etc. It was almost too close to call in some cases, and at one point my glamorous assistants and I actually did a re-count to ensure that the right person was getting the correct score. Poets who came lower than they would have liked – or perhaps lower than some of those in attendance felt they deserved – will hopefully be ever-so-slightly placated by the fact that it really was very close indeed.

The main discussion taking place in the aftermath of the slam – and may I take this opportunity to say how happy I am that so much healthy discussion has been generated by the event – concerns the old chestnut of performance vs page. Who had more of an advantage on the night? Who in attendance counts as ‘page’, and who counts as ‘stage’? Did one camp score the other unfairly – was there a bias for or against either side? And so on and so forth. Personally, while I am watching these discussions with interest, and chipping in every so often (of course), I’m kind of sad to hear these questions being raised. As I said above, my aim for the evening was to temporarily erase – or at least blur – the dividing line that exists between page and performance poets; to see the two sides of the poetry world come together and yes, compete… but also to listen to and acknowledge each other. And it felt like this happened on the night itself. In many cases it was difficult to ascertain who belonged to which camp – over at Tonguefire, commenters are scrabbling to define poets like Alec Beattie (whose set was decidedly performance-esque, but read from a book and something of a departure from his usual work), Colin McGuire (a poet who performs with great gusto but who normally shies away from performance-heavy gigs and whose stuff works brilliantly on the page too) and Emily Dodd (a poetry slam virgin… but one who embraces audience participation). I think it’s only later that the feeling of never-the-twain-shall-meet has begun to slink back in, which perhaps is inevitable. For me, the night itself did exactly what I wanted it to: it picked up the traditional make-your-own-slam kit and gave it a bit of a shake, and it got page-folk and stage-folk up to the same mic, and forced them to rate (or, indeed, slate) one another… all of which involved everyone listening carefully to everyone else. The array of talent on show was refreshingly varied and – if you ask me – of excellent quality, and everyone seemed to have a damn good night. It might take a few more of these things before folk really start thinking differently about how poetry is performed and received in Scotland, but for now, I’m really quite pleased.

Responses to the this collection slam:

“A great learning experience for us novices and some wonderful poems and performers.” – Alec Beattie

“It was a great success, with consistent quality and entertainment, from a controlled crowd of temporary human beings and poets…I think there may be more this collection SLAM nights to come. I hope so. Let there be mic!” – McGuire (more here

“I loved that Claire did something new with slams, and particularly that the ‘friendly’ tag encouraged folks to take part who usually wouldn’t touch slam with a barge pole. A couple o the scores raised my eyebrows – but that’s always the case with competitions isn’t it?” – Jenny Lindsay

“stand-out poems of the evening were Colin McGuire’s “Wrap the children in white”, Mairi Campbell-Jack’s “The Book of Antonyms” and Stephen Welsh‘s newspaper poem in the last round. Colin’s poem set me in mind of some of Neruda’s work, with its combination of surreal imagination, incantatory impetus and political edge. Mairi’s poem seemed to me to mark a significant and exciting step forward in her writing, and I was really impressed with how well she read. Stephen had cut up a Sunday Herald report of the weekend’s protests in London and blanked out certain portions, creating a beautiful, strange, quirky, lyrical, powerful poem — perhaps not so much found poetry as released.

Hearing those poems alone would have made it a worthwhile evening, but there were others. I particularly enjoyed “Scotland as an Xbox Game” by Andrew C Ferguson — just the sort of witty, imaginative examination of the hame nation that appeals to me. Dave Coates also read good work but unfortunately joined me in the junkyard after the first round; that’s just the risk you run at these things. And I liked the sci-fi poem that Russell Jones read in the second round.” – Andrew Philip (more here)

“I know what you were trying to do [at the slam] and there is movement in that direction we can see in the quiet slams that have been held. It’s fair enough and I really liked the poet judge thing.” – Tickle McNicoll

“The night was an enjoyable one, though, holding a friendly atmosphere and quick pace that kept things interesting. If you didn’t like a poet you only had to put up with them for 2.5 minutes, much like my love life.” – Russell Jones (more here

You can find photos of the event here.

Anyone else want to offer feedback? If so, comment below, link me to your thoughts or drop a line to poetry@thiscollection.org. All comments welcomed!

Post by Claire

this collection: FRIENDLY POETRY SLAM

In Community, film, Performance, poetry on March 24, 2011 at 3:19 pm

this collection is throwing its first ever poetry slam — but forget what you’ve seen and heard before. This is not your usual slam: there will be no brownie points for shouting, no judges, and the poet with the most mates won’t win automatically. This is a friendly slam — all styles, personalities and poetics are welcome. See below…

The this collection friendly slam will take the following form:

ROUND ONE: all poets perform under a 2.5 minute time limit. You can do ANYTHING YOU LIKE with those 2.5 minutes — shout, rap, whisper, read off paper, read from memory, read one poem, read fifteen haiku, whatever.

ROUND TWO: the five poets with the lowest scores (see below) will be eliminated, and the remaining poets will perform again — same time limit, same rules.

FINAL: the three poets with the overall highest combined scores from both rounds (and possibly a wildcard) will slug it out in the final (3 minutes this time) for the title of this collection slam champion — and for our lovely prizes (see below).

SCORING: no scary judging panel, no howling audience whooping extra loud for their friends. Each poet will be scored by the other poets performing. Every poet gets a scorecard, and marks their fellow performers out of 30 (marks out of 10 for content, delivery and each scorer’s personal response). Scoring will be ANONYMOUS as scorecards will be collected and tallied by an adjudicator after each round. All poets — including finalists and eliminated poets — will give scores on all three rounds. Please note, poets can’t score themselves!

PRIZES:
1ST — £25, and a mystery prize pack (contents TBC!), plus the title of this collection slam champion!
2ND — £10, and a mystery prize pack
3RD — £5, and a mystery prize pack

PERFORMING ON THE NIGHT!
Stephen Welsh // Scottish Slam Champion 2011 Young Dawkins // Bram E Gieben // Fiona Lindsay // McGuire // Tickle McNicholl // Russell Jones // Mairi Campbell-Jack // Andrew C Fergusson // Andrew Philip // Alec Beattie // Dave Forbes // Sophia Walker // Chris Lindores // Cat Dean // Dave Coates

THIS COLLECTION ALL-WELCOME POETRY SLAM! Come and slam with us for a chance to win some cash!

Invite your friends to our Facebook event! Hope to see you there!

(Photo by Kyre Wood)

Poetry and film events for January

In Community, film, poetry on January 19, 2011 at 1:00 pm

Firstly we’d like to say a huge thank you to everyone who expressed an interest in running workshops with us or getting involved in this collection’s huge community project with ALP and Tollcross Community Centre. We’re happy to say that we’ve had some brilliant proposals and we’re now ready to unveil some of the events we’ll be running during our stay at the Centre. Coming up before the end of January…

FILM FACTORY: free all-day filmmaking workshops with Austin Muirhead
Friday 21st January
Monday 31st January
12:00 — 20:00 FREE! Booking required

Make films? Looking for a new film project? Always wanted to make films but never knew how? Come along to a FREE all-day film workshop, and learn the rules of film and how to break them. Hosted by Austin Muirhead, Canadian born technical director of The Gulf Islands Film and Television Film School.
Please bring yourself, your camera/cables (no fancy tech necessary), your laptop if you can, and make your own arrangements for lunch, etc.
Interested? Places are limited so please email film@thiscollection.org to reserve your spot!

FILM SCREENING & COMMUNITY ASSEMBLY
Wednesday 26th January
16:00 — 18:00 (screening), 18:00 — 20:00 (assembly)
FREE! and BYOB
A free showing of some of this collection’s amassed short films, followed by a free and open community assembly. Come and talk to us about Edinburgh’s artistic and creative community — what are you involved in? What would you like to see happening in the city? How can this collection help? Come and find out more about our project, pitch us your ideas, plug your event, show us your work, meet likeminded people and tell us about cool stuff we should know about. Very informal — all welcome. Bring friends, and BYOB.

POETRY WORKSHOPS: PAGE VS STAGE

POETRY FOR THE PAGE: OPEN WORKSHOP
Friday 28th January
16:00 — 17:30 FREE! Booking required

An open poetry workshop with Claire Askew, poet, Editor in Chief of Read This Magazine, Lecturer in Literature and Communications at Edinburgh’s Telford College and Tutor in Creative Writing at the University of Edinburgh. Bring up to three poems for discussion, contructive feedback, hints and tips from a small and friendly group. All welcome — no prior workshopping experience necessary!
Interested? Places are limited so please email poetry@thiscollection.org to reserve your spot!

POETRY FOR THE STAGE: WRITING OUT LOUD
Friday 28th January
18:00 — 20:00 FREE! Booking required

Stick around after Claire’s page workshop and find out how to adapt one of your poems for the stage. Alternatively, come along fresh and learn all about the finer points of performance. Hosted by Harry Giles, writer, theatre director, founder and co-ordinator of Inky Fingers and multiple-award-winning slam poet. All welcome, no experience necessary — just bring yourself, and a poem!
Interested? Places are limited so please email poetry@thiscollection.org to reserve your spot!

All events take place at: The Art Room, Tollcross Community Centre (next to Tollcross Primary School), Fountainbridge
Free tea and coffee will be provided at all events.

WANT TO RUN YOUR OWN EVENT?
We want to hear from anyone who wants to run their own workshop, host a meeting, screen films, exhibit art, put on a play, dance, sculpt or do anything else creative in our space. No proposal is too big, too small, or too strange. For more details visit http://bit.ly/dXqlS7 or email film@thiscollection.org

We hope to see some of you there!

Film Factory adieu

In Community, film on January 10, 2011 at 3:46 pm

Photo by Austin Muirhead

As part of our workshop series thiscollection.org in collaboration with Tollcross Community Center’s Adult Learning Project presents:

Who

Austin Muirhead, Canadian born technical director of The Gulf Islands Film and Television Film School has worked on various web and film productions such as Riese the Series, Time Before the Light and Charlie St. Cloud.

What
Austin takes us through some of the basic rules of filmmaking and challenges participants to break them.

This workshop based exploration of the craft invites participants to adapt one of the thiscollection poems using their own basic digital technology.

Craft a film poesy in a day and sow a seed for something greater.

The Challenge:
All films made in the workshops must be based on a poem from thiscollection.org and will be showcased in various events across Scotland.

All workshops are free but donations are welcome.

Participants need to bring:
– Digital Camera/ mobile phone
– Relevant cables
– Laptop (if possible)

When
Pick ONE workshop date:
Friday 21st January 12pm -9pm or
Monday 31st January 12pm -9pm or
Friday 4th February 12pm-9pm

Customised clinics for more advanced camera and editing techniques are also available:
3-9pm
Wednesday February 9th

Where
The Art Room @
Tollcross Community Centre
117 Fountainbridge
Edinburgh EH3 9QG
View map

How
email film[at]thiscollection.org to confirm a space.
or join thiscollection’s facebook page to register interest.

Interested in pitching a workshop please get in touch.

this collection’s FREE March McEwan Hall showcase!

In film, poetry on March 15, 2010 at 8:23 pm

Explore Edinburgh as you’ve never seen it before – come to our FREE poetry-film showcase extravaganza in the magnificent McEwan Hall!

We all know Edinburgh is the greatest literary city in the world – a centre of vibrant culture and home to the biggest, brightest, loudest and coolest annual arts festival ever. But how well do you really know Edinburgh? this collection is a non-profit DIY project that aims to take a fresh look at life in the city… through the eyes of its talented writers and filmmakers.

Last year we started out with 100 poems – each of 100 words or less, and each inspired by a different Edinburgh postcode. All these poems were submitted by Edinburgh writers of all walks of life; from award-winners like Brian McCabe and Alan Gillis to students, school children and talented first-time poets. From there, we worked to pair our poets up with local filmmakers, to create a collection of collaborative snapshots inspired by life in Edinburgh. Filmmakers have also come from all works of life – this collection has received responses from well-known professionals, but we’ve also gathered a great crop by running free public-access workshops, in which budding first-timers were given the chance to make an entire short film from scratch in only a few hours. The results have been by turns funny, beautiful, moving and dark, and we’re so proud of this collection so far that we want to share it with the world!

So on 25th and 26th March we’ll be showcasing all the collaborations we’ve gathered so far, in a truly awe-inspiring setting – the University of Edinburgh’s magnificent McEwan Hall. Thusday 25th will see an all-day film exposition from 10am-5pm in the hall’s main space, with films projected on several screens and a free press table where visitors can gather more information about our artists and the project as a whole. On Friday 26th we’ll be holding an evening event with live sets from poets, screenings of our films, and the chance to further explore this collection within the amazing McEwan Hall. You’ll also be able to find out more about how YOU can get involved in one of our collaborations. The entire event is free, and everyone is welcome to attend – the Friday evening event will also include free refreshment for visitors.

So come along and see Edinburgh through the eyes of its artists: see, hear, be inspired, get involved!

this collection March McEwan Hall showcase: Thursday 25th March 10am – 5pm / Friday 26th March 7pm – 9pm . FREE, all welcome.

See some of the films we’ll be showing here.

Poets reading at on Friday 26th from 7-9pm include:
Tom Bristow
Christine de Luca
Hayley Shields
Russell Jones
Andrew C Fergusson
Morgan Downie
Anita John
Andrew Philip
Rob A Mackenzie
Aileen Ballantyne
Jane McKie
Chris Lindores
Mairi Sharratt
Juliet Wilson
McGuire
Claire Askew
& more TBC!

(Photo by mikefranklin)