I attended Artists Connect in Conversation, organised by Alice McGrath in collaboration with Artworks Scotland. It was a brilliant open space session on participatory creative practice that started with the question “How do we stay nourished as practitioners and as artists?”
There were about 9 of us and we had a brilliantly wide ranging discussion with some great ideas, insights and a little bit of therapy. Here’s what I learned;
– There was a brilliant story from one of the ladies about an artists talk she’d attended. He’d been commissioned to work in Easterhouse, Glasgow and had a meeting with the councillors & funders in a snazzy city centre location. He got everyone out of the space, bundled them into a van (basically kidnapped them) and took them to Easterhouse where he’d set up a meeting table and seats outside right in the middle of some tower blocks. Apparently they looked absolutely terrified in the photos. His thing was we’re not discussing this project away in a bubble away from the community it concerns. Brilliant!
– Pick a job title that’s familiar. I’d been thinking about a job title for what I do as Tactician, a sailing role but as it was pointed out sailing conjures up images of floating and being all over the place. Also it’s a word that most people aren’t familiar with. Facilitator is much better, thanks Lowri!
– Artists as documenters, how can evaluations/ reports be more interesting. Always thinking what was the original intention? What has it become?
– Imagine that your ears are by your waist. Picturing your ears by your waist forces you firstly to sit back and secondly to listen. Half the time we just want to be heard. We don’t need a solution, the answer is already within us.
– Some ways to create headspace. One that I want to try out is Morning Pages, I was pleasantly surprised to hear how effective they have been. I just need to get up a bit earlier in the morning!
– Open Space. The session was run using the Open Space technique which is new for me and I thought was brilliant it meant that we could speak openly and comfortably because there was no real agenda. I’ll definitely be looking more into it.