I never thought I would see the day when a luminary such as Wheeler Winston Dixon would quote someone such as myself. But I truly mean what I say about this prolific filmmaker/artist and sage on experimental film in the USA (see The Exploding Eye, 1997). He is a pioneer, along with Gwendolyn Audrey Foster in this particular field, and works tirelessly on new videos almost every day. See his Vimeo profile for further information.
Really thrilled to be part of Tom Konyves' major and long-running videopoetry exhibition Poets with a Video Camera: Videopoetry 1980–2020 in Vancouver
(September 17th 2022– January 2nd 2023). This is truly a milestone event, and there will also be a very interesting symposium on the subject (in which I am very flattered to say I am the key speaker) on the 5th November, entitled: New Art Emerging: Two or Three Things One Should Know About Videopoetry. My video poem some everybodies is from 2009 and asks questions about place as embodied site, tourism, and passing by. It centres on a corner near a tourist hotspot in historic Bath, England (where incidentally a small accident occurs). Footage was gathered over a year, from a fixed camera, and both the sound and the images have been slowed down to emphasise movement. Conversations have become text-on-screen disconnected from the images and creating a communal poem of the site itself. Wherever a tourist has paused to take a picture, the film has been frozen for a few seconds, and the screen has a graphic coloration to emulate old postcards (which have also been made from
selected stills, to accompany the film).
I have to add the promotional image is by Janet Lees (as mentioned in previous post) and actually to me one of her most poignant films – something about the pathos of the birds yet their polite fragility, and the conjuring up of a delicate humour and otherworldliness. There are I think 25 of us in the exhibition. More updates on this coming up in the next month or so but check out SAG if you need more details in the meantime. A not-to-be-missed event.
Many thanks to the wonderfully talented ecopoet Janet Lees for sharing my ecopoetry film with the Deep Adaptation forum on their platform
and thank you to the DAF for being kind enough to like the work, too. It is unfortunate we have to make these films but this is both about the climate crisis and the biosphere and also the loss of my personal pet and companion, who I spent every day and evening with, for most of her life. In terms of this I would recommend the forum if you are struggling with the enormity of what is happening to our climate, and how we are going to change our lives, and force change everywhere. See The Deep Adaptation forum
Another place I would suggest is the Just Stop Oil campaign juststopoil.org/zoom. One of the most inspiring people in that is Zoe Cohen who can be seen bringing the Jeremy Vine TV hosts back to reality in this wonderful interview
I think this shows how we are so schizophrenic. People put on their suits and talk the talk just to get through their day, but know the reality underneath and realise the implication that everything, but everything needs to have a new approach to living. You can't have a frothy chat about a bit of heat when there are such massive implications and you can't sweep it under the carpet. Good for you Zoe!
Very many thanks to The Scottish Centre for Geopoetics who have published my ecopoem 'Villanelle for the Bees and the Birds' based on Dylan Thomas' writing in Stravaig II, the online journal. This issue is unfortunately on Geopoetics and The Climate Crisis and has a great variety of writing on the subject. In designing the cover I feel Caroline Watson has captured the ominous trepidation of the coming years unless we act to stop imminent devastation. Whilst I am writing I would also like to thank the editorial team for including one of my family history poems in Stravaig 10 last year.
see more at
Here is the link for the journal
Thank you to my publishers for showcasing the book at the Screen Studies conference in July. Sitting alongside some notable writers – a real joy.
Really very proud that my poetry film and poem Villanelle for Elizabeth not Ophelia is a finalist in the Absurd Art House film festival this year. Villanelle centres on suicidal relationships, and how Elizabeth Siddall a Pre-Raphaelite poet, model and wife of dominating poet Dante Gabriel Rossetti finds life mirrors art or art mirrors life as a suicidal poet and artist's model. The poetry film posits a different ending for Elizabeth not as Ophelia.
This is the second year for the festival and there are different sections being shown:
We are open to all international films that don't fit in, don't want to fit in, or just can't be categorised to fit in to the norms expected of so many conservative festivals (you know who you are)... we are looking for fictions, animation, video arts, short films and very short films. Finalists and winners will be shown in the evening all will be eligible for “the absurdah awards”.
The festival is the brainchild of artist, prize-winning video poet, all-round designer, publisher ... the list goes on ... of Keith Sargent and like the films the location is pretty 'out there' literally and metaphorically as well, since it is on the Isle of Sheppey. Basically this is off the East Kent coast and at the mouth of the Thames estuary, and should set up its own parliament if things get any worse politically in the UK! For those of you who travel a lot the island can be seen in full on the flight path from Berlin to Bristol. The actual screening takes place at the atmospheric and historic location of The Criterion Music Hall and Theatre, Blue Town, Sheerness. Looking forward to discovering some equally gritty, adventurous and inspiring work and diving into (or rushing in and out of) the once-familiar North Sea) ...