Some notes on running a group reading The Cloud together. Through it, we hoped to gain a deeper understanding of prayer and through that to deepen our own prayer lives and relationships with God.
Another in my very irregular series of ‘were I to have preached’… Thomas was not the first, nor the last.
In this year of quarantine, I have been observing a DIY Lent. I thought it would be wonderful to get together (via Zoom of course) with one or two different friends each week. Both of us bring a poem, or piece of poetic prose, or art, or music to share and reflect on.
Above all, trust in the slow work of God. We are quite naturally impatient in everything to reach the end without delay. We should like to skip the intermediate stages. We are impatient of being on the way to something unknown, something new. And yet it is the law of all progress that it is … Read more
…since the beginning of Lockdown 1
I went on an expedition today, all the way to Middlemoor roundabout, for a picnic lunch amidst the trees and daffodils.
There is a bi-i-ig difference between jigsaws and mosaics. Jigsaws have only one correct solution. Mosaic tiles can be pieced together in many different ways to create many different images.
Lord God, when thou givest to thy servants to endeavour any great matter, grant us also to know that it is not the beginning, but the continuing of the same, until it be thoroughly finished, that yieldeth the true glory; through him who, for the finishing of thy work, laid down his life for us, … Read more
I value a ‘don’t know’ attitude highly, because it’s ambiguous, and fosters a ‘beginner’s mind’ in which there are more possibilities than an ‘expert’s mind.’ Do your art and forget about marketing it. You can always find somebody else to do the marketing, but you can’t find somebody else to do the art. There is … Read more
My reflections during shared Lectio on the Gospel readings through October.
One of a series of articles for Exeter Cathedral’s monthly news. It’s the Feast Day of St Francis of Assisi, and I’m looking at the emotive issue of food.
If you’re prone to thinking you should be helping more, that’s probably a sign that you could afford to direct more energy to your idiosyncratic ambitions and enthusiasms. As the Buddhist teacher Susan Piver observes, it’s radical, at least for some of us, to ask how we’d enjoy spending an hour or day of discretionary … Read more
My reflections during shared Lectio on the Gospel readings through September.
My reflections during shared Lectio on the Gospel readings through August.
Whatever you’re meant to do, do it now. The conditions are always impossible.
My reflections during shared Lectio on the Gospel readings through July.
In a past working life I conducted a thought experiment, looking at the different aspects of numerical weather prediction and weather forecasting at the Met Office, and asking whether these techniques might have an analogue in health forecasting. At the time, I thought there might be a paper in it. It never came to be written, so this is how I am keeping the idea alive.
This was intended to be the last in my series of articles for Exeter Cathedral’s monthly News about what we can do about the Climate Emergency. White people say we want to be an ally to Black people. But are we ready for sacrifice?
This St Peter’s day on 29 June, Exeter Cathedral held a Psalmathon – reading all 150 Psalms in about 8 hours.
One of a series of articles for Exeter Cathedral’s monthly news. Coronavirus has given us an opportunity to rethink how much and how we travel. We need to use it; we only have 6 months and counting to ‘save the planet’.
My reflections during shared Lectio on the Gospel readings through June.
To be entertained by a cracking yarn. To comfort me in illness or sadness. To experience the thrill of a new beginning, and the potential that I hold in my hand for unfurling life or explosive change.
Teaching on the Medical Humanities Special Studies Unit at Exeter Medical School, introducing fourth year students to conceptual and environmental art, looking at meaning-making and how we turn ideas into art, making art.
The amazingly creative Chloe Uden from Art and Energy has made oak gall ink, so I attempted watercolour for the first time, and a Great Oak Beauty moth.
Initially a step into the unknown, group Lectio Divina over Zoom has proved to work extremely well; its very structured format holds open a space for deep encounters with both God and each other.
It is in our hands to make of our world a better one for all. — #MandelaDay
During the days between Ascension and Pentecost, I found myself ruminating about Exeter Cathedral as building and people, prompted by the lack of access of most people during the Coronavirus lockdown to the church buildings we know and love.
My reflections during shared Lectio on three Bible readings during the period of Thy Kingdom Come.
My reflections during shared Lectio on the Gospel readings through May.
#ice #crystals #fractals #window #sky #monastery #gate #bars #tunnel #amphitheatre #grass #bowl #blue #green #light #dark #2×2 #patterns
Part of a series of articles for Exeter Cathedral’s monthly News. Coronavirus has changed much, but it is an opportunity to reframe what we think of as ‘normal’.
My reflections during shared Lectio on the Gospel readings through April.
I haven’t been getting round to making art recently. Which isn’t to say I haven’t been creative.
The nodding donkey is a grotesque distortion of circular natural seasonal fecundity into linear exploitative extraction. The donkeys are nodding to capitalism’s exponential growth message, always looking down even when their head is high, never looking up to reality or the future.
“Do you know how old I will be by the time I learn to really play the piano/act/paint/write a decent play?” Yes . . . the same age you will be if you don’t. So let’s start. — The Artist’s Way
One of a series of articles for Exeter Cathedral’s monthly News. We have 10 months and counting now to ‘save the planet’, so I suggest we increase the pressure on business, and put our money where our heart is.
The future is already here – it’s just not very evenly distributed.
Studies of form and pattern, inside and out, natural and artifical, found and artefact.
Wishing you a very Merry Christmas, with love and hope for 2020.
A concert of Handel “Dixit Dominus” and other baroque gems, held in the Music Room at Powderham Castle.
This was an opportunity for me to pilot my latest work, with some interesting outcomes and lessons!!
One of a series of articles for Exeter Cathedral’s monthly News. We have 13 months to ‘save the planet’. This month’s suggestions are about saving energy in the home and putting pressure on the Government.
To love. To be loved. To never forget your own insignificance. To never get used to the unspeakable violence and the vulgar disparity of life around you. To seek joy in the saddest places. To pursue beauty to its lair. To never simplify what is complicated or complicate what is simple. To respect strength, never … Read more
I’m looking forward to piloting “Minecraft Climate Quest” at the ExIST STEAMM Show, an interactive exhibition of commercial, research and creative projects from the south west which combine arts, sciences and technology.
The first in a series of articles I’m writing for Exeter Cathedral’s monthly News, on the changes we can make in our own lives, and how we can encourage necessary structural changes. This time: calculating your environmental footprint, and taking a Sabbath.
My fourth and absolutely my last attempt for Turnip Prize glory. Although you never know. After all, the Tories shouldn’t have a monopoly on U-turns, flip-flops, deceiving the voters, or otherwise go against their word.
This weekend was NASA Space Apps Challenge 2019, and I joined the Time and Tide team to play with slow visualisations of rising sea levels, and make a patchwork of contours.
When do we want it? World without end!
For what are we shouting? With our voices? And with our actions that speak louder than words?
In which the UK Climate Projections 2018 meet Minecraft and “The Warlock of Firetop Mountain”.
Don’t write what you know, write towards what you want to know. A writer is an explorer. She knows she wants to get somewhere, but she doesn’t know if the somewhere even exists yet. It is still to be created. Don’t sit around looking inward. That’s boring. In the end your navel contains only lint. … Read more
Many years ago I saw a TV segment exploring a china clay pit, and was struck by the infinite landscape and colours. I’d been wanting to see one with my own eyes ever since, and have finally had the chance.
This is an update to my previous post on trialling a Lego visualisation of UKCP09. This second trial uses the latest data from UKCP18 and covers the whole UK.
A show of the conceptual artwork produced by my 4th year medical students, and the Little colouring books of climate mindfulness in Lego.
I teach a Medical Humanities unit to fourth year students at Exeter Medical School, using conceptual art as a way in. I arranged this exhibition of the work produced by the 2018/19 cohort.
Thy Kingdom Come is a global wave of prayer uniting Christians around the world during the days from Ascension Day to Pentecost. From 30 May to 9 June 2019, Exeter Cathedral is hosting a special prayer room in the Grandisson Chapel tucked into the West Front. Based on the parable of the hidden treasure, I’ve set up a small installation with a small action to help people pray.
I dwell in Possibility – A fairer House than Prose – More numerous of Windows – Superior – for Doors – Of Chambers as the Cedars – Impregnable of eye – And for an everlasting Roof The Gambrels of the Sky – Of Visitors – the fairest – For Occupation – This – The spreading … Read more
I laugh. I had tried to read the river. But the river read me, asking How will you live your mayfly life? — A Wild Swim with Mayflies
. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
Things feel bad. Spring comes, the days get longer and the weather improves. But things still feel bad. So the feeling of badness is not just because it’s winter. The feeling of badness is yours.
Since my wander around St Loyes with Rosie King, I’ve been continuing to think about migration patterns. The daily migration of workers on Sowton Industrial Estate became particular obvious to me during “The Birds of Sowton Industrial Estate” as it emptied of cars at the end of the working day. How do we make this migration pattern less harmful? How can we persuade people out of their cars and onto their bikes/feet?
O wilderness God, I do not ask to avoid the journey and the struggle. Only help me to trust that you are always beside me holding my hand fast in yours, even when all seems dark and dry, and that you will lead me to a place of refreshment, and blessing at the end. Amen.
Paradoxically, I have found peace because I have always been dissatisfied. My moments of depression and despair turn out to be renewals, new beginnings. . . . All life tends to grow like this, in mystery inscaped with paradox and contradiction, yet centered, in its very heart, on the divine mercy . . . and … Read more
I’m delighted that Josh Hamilton, the Community Builder in St Loyes, now has a page on the Working with Gold website, which lists a gajillion activities and groups in the area.
Mikrofest was a free mini festival to launch Kaleider’s new home. I took the opportunity to trial an installation of “Listening to Silent Spring” in a couple of bird boxes in the building.
The ancient close-of-the-day service of Compline, with plainchant and polyphony. Hosted by Margaret Aagesen Hughes (Soprano) and Clare Bryden (Alto). Featuring the music of Bach, Barber and Saint-Saëns, and musicians Ruth Molins, Sophie Brewer (Flute), Emma Welton (Violin), Catherine Bradley (Cello).
No coats today. Buds bulge on chestnut trees, And on the doorstep of a big, old house A young man stands and plays his flute. I watch the silver notes fly up And circle in the blue sky above the traffic, Travelling where they will. And suddenly this paving-stone Midway between my front door and … Read more
Mucknell Abbey, Worcestershire, 10 March 2011 – The anticyclonic frost and cold of the beginning of March has become cyclonic bluster and low cloud. I take advantage of the force 5-ish sou’westerlies, and reach for my kite.
Set on a high point within Ludwell Valley Park, Exeter, the Angel’s weathered steel reflects the rust-red warmth of the local stone. It serves as a focus and an anchor, helping to tether us and give us a sense of place in an ephemeral and rapidly changing world.
I led this workshop on the ancient monastic practice of Lectio Divina, as part of a Prayer & Spirituality Day at Exeter Cathedral.
This is the true joy in life, the being used for a purpose recognized by yourself as a mighty one; the being a force of nature instead of a feverish, selfish little clod of ailments and grievances complaining that the world will not devote itself to making you happy. I am of the opinion that … Read more
This morning in the Cathedral, I got out the mental glasses or hearing aids that I often use while following the readings: I looked and listened for the unnamed and unnoticed characters. My reflections here could be the second in what might turn into a series on ‘were I to have preached’.
I had this little idea of Paying It Forward during 2019. I’m offering up to 3 hours of my time to help you with something inspiring, worthwhile, bonkers, thought-provoking, or maybe even useful. So it’s not wholly altruistic, as I want to have fun too!
Following the “Star Spangled Kyrangle”, it’s great to see the idea of Community Star Gazing taking off around Exeter.
Ruth Bancewicz of the Faraday Institute asked me to write a piece for the blog “Science and Belief – A blog about the positive interactions between science and faith”. I finally took the opportunity to write up my reflections about “Green|Blue” more fully.
we are the ones we have been waiting for — Poem for South African Women
Giving fourth year students at Exeter Medical School an introduction to conceptual and environmental art, looking at meaning-making and how we turn ideas into art, making art.
While I was developing the original proposal for the Working with Gold programme, I came up with many ideas for events and activities. There were too many to be able to do all of them, so instead of losing the ideas I turned them into resources for schools and communities.
It took several days to create a sand painting of the Compact Muon Solenoid at CERN, laboriously piling grains of sand one on another. Then soon after completion it was destroyed.
When despair for the world grows in me and I wake in the night at the least sound in fear of what my life and my children’s lives may be, I go and lie down where the wood drake rests in his beauty on the water, and the great heron feeds. I come into the … Read more
Reflections on walking and talking and bouncing a tennis ball in the streets of Exeter.
The two events of the Star Spangled Kyrangle were opportunities to bring people together, and encourage them to be attentive to their place, surroundings and nature. The night sky holds many myths and stories in its depths. It has spoken to humanity since our earliest times. We too can step outside and look up, and gaze at the beauty of the night sky, and wonder.
Not far from Land’s End, there is a small south-facing bay comprising St Loy’s Cove and Paynter’s Cove. Not many years ago, storms washed up a large chunk of metal onto the top of the beach. Now, it has been resettled to the M5 Services at Junction 30.
In which I spoke for 6 minutes 40 seconds about how I fell into my art practice, and about how I have followed a number of threads, but mostly my own nose.
“Hope” is the thing with feathers – That perches in the soul – And sings the tune without the words – And never stops – at all – And sweetest – in the Gale – is heard – And sore must be the storm – That could abash the little Bird That kept so many … Read more
As part of Working with Gold, I have been writing some nuggets about the area for the website. Here, then, are its Horrible histories, Ghastly geographies, Problematic politics, and Nasty numbers.
After complete and utter failure in 2016 and 2017, here is my third and possibly my last attempt for Turnip Prize glory.
This weekend I was back at the Met Office for the NASA Space Apps Challenge, and joined the 3D Earthlings team to play with visualisation of data on a 3D representation of the Earth. Historic meteorite landings… BOOM!!
“Listening to Silent Spring” is a piece of sound art, based on a listening walk around east Exeter on the 50th anniversary of publication of “Silent Spring” by Rachel Carson. The sounds I noted became the script for the piece. The work is mostly silence, which allows the listener to become aware of their own ambient soundtrack.
Meister Eckhart brings to God A stone How shall I speak of you? It asks By being a stone Says God — Echoes of Eckhart
“Q is for Quarries” is an A-Z trail that allows people to discover the distinctive Heavitree Stone used to build the red skeleton of Exeter.
I originally created the A-Z trail around Heavitree Stone sites on Placeify. But then I came across TiCL, who were really enthusiastic about adding “Q is for Quarries” to their portfolio of Exeter trails. So now there are two versions!!
Many of the roads on Sowton are named after birds, and there is other evidence of bird life to be found. The Birdman and I hatched a plan for a walk to discover the birds, both real and imaginary, of one of Exeter’s most neglected ecosystems.
The Perseids in August are one of the most prolific meteor showers. They take their name from the constellation Perseus, the point in the sky where they appear to come. So on one Monday in August people gathered together on the Kyrangle in Digby to look up as the skies darkened and the planets and stars appeared.
in all the falling, flawing, failing. there is the grace of learning. of shedding an old life. for a new. let a new life happen to you.
Today was the day when we launched the Heavitree Quarry Trails on Exeter’s historic Quay! Performances, leaflets of ready-made trails, A-Z trail, umbrella website, and all!
Steven Bramble designed the alphabet. I turned it into the font used on all the Heavitree Quarry Trails outputs. I’ve made it available to download it for your own use too.
When Steven Bramble suggested designing an alphabet of Heavitree Stone, I immediately thought of its potential use in an A-Z. I came across Placeify some years ago, powering Exeter University’s Sculpture Tour, and the two things came together as an idea for a trail.
A small example of how Minecraft can be used to imagine our place, to the extent of forming part of an official Exeter planning meeting!
Sometimes during the sermon slot, I catch myself thinking about what I might have said if I were up there in that pulpit. This time it would have been about women raising their voices.
You need not do anything. Remain sitting at your table and listen. You need not even listen, just wait. You need not even wait, just learn to be quiet, still and solitary. And the world will freely offer itself to you unmasked. It has no choice, it will roll in ecstasy at your feet. — … Read more
“See Exeter by Minecraft” is a series of old-style railway posters and a postcard, created for the utterly imaginary St Loyes Tourist Board. A second postcard was created for the equally fictitious St Loyes Education Board, and a very one-off poster for the totally fabricated St Loyes Astrophysics Board.
“Minecraft my home” is an ongoing activity as part of my “Working with Gold” programme of public art in St Loyes. It is a re-creation of St Loyes as a world in the Minecraft game. During Art Week Exeter, I held a meetup to explore the world together, share what we have been creating, and build more stuff.
Art Week Exeter is a go-go! And it turns out that I had a bit more in show than I thought. The main event (for me) is “Minecraft my home”. The Minecraft St Loyes world is available to download and play online, and on Saturday 26 May I’m holding a meetup to share our explorations and creations.
Create giant sculptures in your neighbourhood
Pave the streets with gold
Turn your home into a castle
Subvert urban design: cover it with flowers
Over the last few months, I’ve been collaborating with local artist Steven Bramble on producing an alphabet and font for the Quarry Pod.
Recently I received through the post a small package from the Blood service: a letter, certificate and badge to mark my 25th blood donation. I didn’t expect to feel so honoured and proud.
“Minecraft my home” is a re-creation of St Loyes as a world in the Minecraft game. The Minecraft world lets residents explore their neighbourhood in a new way and imagine new possibilities for it.
when creating. be kind to your doubt. hear it out. thank it for its concern. and reassure it that you are an artist. and risk is essential. — when creating
My ‘thoughts looking sidewards’ about travelling the D bus route in Exeter, from the vantage point of my home office.
What three words…? is an online tool that captures in a simple way what places mean to people. It is aimed at encouraging people to pay attention to place. Between January and March 2018, I used it as a way of gathering insights into people’s views of St Loyes as a place to live and/or work.
I haven’t written much about the progress of the Heavitree Squilometre Quarry Pod. It’s been a period of research then consolidation and creative pondering, by turns fascinating, inspiring, and great fun!
There are times for everything under the sun. Times for sleeping, times for waking, times for planting, times for reaping, times for getting stuff done, times for taking a step back.
Last night I finally met Minecraft, and had my first lesson in moving and building from a 10-year-old.
This is a slightly longer version of an article I wrote for Exeter Cathedral’s monthly magazine, the first in what is hoped to be a regular feature focusing on the prayer lives of members of the Cathedral community. There are as many different understandings and types of prayer as there are different people.
A bit of fun. Some of them are more favourite than others! Now with a second helping!
The sound of axes being ground is deafening, whether it’s the right-wing press incensed that the UK spends any money on overseas aid, or the UK government seeking to undermine an effective advocacy organisation. UPDATE: If you would like to help the people who Oxfam helps, see the comment for points you can make to your MP.
FALAFELS stands for Free Art Friday Exeter St Loyes Loves Anagrams. You have to think about it a bit!
Hope imagines the future and then acts as if that future is irresistible.
If there is a problem with loading any of the code in the “Game of Life” blog, this is a companion blog of example videos.
The Game of Life is a pretty standard coding exercise. But what if Life is no longer seen in black and white, and instead in shades of grey? Update: Or in technicolor? And what happens if we tweak the rules?
Pop over and take a look at the new website for “Working with Gold”, or get in touch and get involved with the programme on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram @workingwithgold.
I had so much fun with generative poetry in 2017 that I wanted to continue with the coding, so I embarked on a FutureLearn course with Monash University. Here’s some outputs I did earlier.
Clare is seduced by the sunshine symbol on her weather forecast app into going for a bike ride around Exeter. She plans to drop in on the FLOW tree planting on Exe Mill Field and the Ziggurat painting on Paris St to see how they are getting on.
My “Green|Blue” tiny tears were on sale in the Art Vending Machine during November and December. I’ve just had an update from The Vendor, with news of sales so far and some upcoming appearances.
In the spirit of sharing the uphill struggles as well as the good times…
Our deepest fear is not that we are inadequate. Our deepest fear is that we are powerful beyond measure. It is our light, not our darkness that most frightens us. We ask ourselves, Who am I to be brilliant, gorgeous, talented, and fabulous? Actually, who are you not to be? You are a child of … Read more
One of my undertakings as Artist in Residence with Digby Community Association was to write about my work for the “Digby News”, that is published each November.
I should have been mowing the lawn, but instead I created my entry for the 2017 Turnip Prize. Early viewers of the work immediately grasped the referencing of Magritte and its significance, which prompted a vibrant cultural debate.
In their second album, Antiphon presents world premiere recordings of three choral works by Michael Walsh: an unaccompanied Mass of the Holy Trinity; a full-scale Requiem Mass; and The Way of Love, a setting of five love poems by Rupert Brooke. We recorded it in July 2017 in the crossing and Lady Chapel in Exeter Cathedral.
The Art Vending Machine is a fun installation that sells playing card-sized art to the regular punter. “Green|Blue: Drop Slow Tears”, the mini mirror tears, are one of eleven different multiples during the 2017/18 season.
Culture & Review is the monthly round-up of cultural activity in Exeter. My Cathedral Chapter House show was reviewed back in June by presenter Josie Sutcliffe, musician Emma Welton, and playwright Emily Holyoake. Five months later, I’ve managed to get hold of the recording!
Way back in the mists of time, during Art Week Exeter 2017, I had a conversation about patterns with Veronica Gosling of Studio 36. Five months later I’m singing 20th century classics and knitting on stage.
I’m delighted that Exeter City Council have agreed to part-fund “Working with Gold”. The money is a Grass Roots Grant, which comes from the Community Infrastructure Levy.
I’ve been having a play, and come up with a logo for “Working with Gold”, and I think a working design. Hope you like it!
Question: “Is it easier to forecast the weather, which obeys the laws of physics, or the economy, in which the actors are swayed by the forecasts?”
Wisdom consists in doing the next thing you have to do, doing it with your whole heart, and finding delight in doing it.
“In this environment, the task of the prophet is not initially to lead a movement toward social renewal, but to lead the people in creative, artistic, public lament.” – Walter Brueggemann, The Prophetic Imagination
Greenbelt is a festival of arts, faith and justice, held over the August Bank Holiday. The programme is huge, so to help me manage it I often choose a theme. This year I didn’t, consciously at any rate, but it became apparent as the weekend unfolded that I’d ringed quite a lot of talks relating to contemplation and action
Yesterday I had a great meeting with print artist Lynn Bailey, who had come to Kaleider to hear my talk on Working with Gold. She had produced work responding to Mincinglake Valley Park for the dissertation part of her Fine Arts masters.
Twas on the day of the autumn equinox that Diana and I decided to walk the Northbrook from mouth to source.
Further to yesterday’s post about my five-minute talk “Working with gold, weaving with data” at Exeter City Futures, I thought I’d share more of the talk content.
Exeter City Futures’ Connect events are an opportunity to share ideas on the big problems that they believe Exeter needs to solve as it transitions towards becoming energy independent and congestion free. At the Autumn Connect, I presented my developing vision for a programme of art in St Loyes, aimed at nurturing a sense of place and building community.
I’ve been playfully exploring my local area for a number of years, its history, geography, biodiversity, archaeology, and myth – some invented! This Kaleider Lunchtime Talk was a shout-out to anyone with an interest in any aspect of place-based art and/or who lives in St Loyes.
The Church Times editor was kind enough to pop round… and not once but twice, as I was still setting up the first occasion. So I thought it was quite likely I’d be in the review, but it was still nice to see my name in there.
For Creationtide 2017, EcoChurch Southwest has produced a series of prayers and short reflections on the theme of ‘Inspiring Earth’. You can sign up to a daily email with ideas and resources each morning between the 1st September and the 4th October. I contributed one of the reflections.
I heard management guru Charles Handy speak at Greenbelt on the need for second, third fourth… curves to living a fulfilling life.
I had a wonderful time showing Green|Blue at Greenbelt… mostly! It just wouldn’t be the same if I wasn’t cursing how complicated and time-consuming it is to set up my art stuff, especially when I only had 3-6pm on a Sunday afternoon to set up, show, and take down.
Over the last couple of months, I’ve been part of a group assembled by the force of nature that is Veronica Gosling at Studio 36. We’ve been bouncing ideas around and exploring inspirations on the theme of “Patterns”, and working towards a performance at St Sidwell’s Community Centre on 21 October.
If you are not optimistic about change, why be involved in the first place? — Interview in the Church Times
My ideas for an artist’s residency in St Loyes Exeter are gathering momentum. I’m close to putting in my first grant application, and on Friday 28 July Rosie King kindly joined me on a walk around the ward. It’s an area ripe for an artistic response!
In past years they’ve kindly supported my mad-cap safari concerts. Now Digby Community Association, within St Loyes, is another key supporter of “Working with Gold”.
I’m in the middle of three evenings recording another CD with Antiphon. This one is of music by the contemporary composer Michael Walsh.
Really honoured and excited that “Green|Blue” is part of this amazing line-up that will be “On Common Ground” at Greenbelt 2017. I’ll be showing once again in the Allotment Shed gallery, on the Sunday afternoon. Come and find me!
Clare Bryden. Label-free. The Porch Magazine, May/June 2017.
Who am I? I can and do slap any number of labels on myself. I am not alone. Other people slap labels on themselves. We slap labels on each other. Then the labels I give myself and others affect how I see myself, how I see others, how I expect them to see me, and how I interact with them.
There are those of us who talk about what we’d like to happen and those, like you, who act to ensure it does!
The Heavitree quarries have been voted by the people of Heavitree as the next theme for the Heavitree Squilometre. Of course, the quarries are actually in St Loyes.
Today, my “Little colouring books of climate mindfulness” popped up in the Exeter University Forum alongside “Green|Blue: Exe”. I was doing a colour-by-numbers activity as part of “Think…Art”, a day of free fun artistic activities linked to the University’s research themes.
Now that my Cathedral show and “Primordial Soup” at Fringe Arts Bath are over, here is the two minute video I created for the latter and included in the former.
“Green|Blue: Exe” is showing in “The Observatory: perspectives on landscape, society and spirit” in Exeter University Forum. It’s on until Sunday 18th June, and open 10am-5pm each day.
Spacex commissioned Juneau Projects to create “Makers of the Multiverse”, presenting work as multiples, by multiple artists, for the duration of Art Week Exeter and beyond.
An evening performance of madrigals, catches, and glees in the Music Room at Powderham Castle.
After Art Week Exeter, I had a week to turn around and prep the next outing for “Green|Blue”. And it was my most high profile yet: a solo show in the Cathedral! Featuring work previously shown at Dartington Garden Room Gallery, work coming up at Fringe Arts Bath, and new “Patternings”.
To see a World in a Grain of Sand And a Heaven in a Wild Flower Hold Infinity in the palm of your hand And Eternity in an hour — Auguries of Innocence
Today’s the day when I got into the Chapter House to set up my new show. It’s fair to say that I’m really happy how it’s turned out.
I’m showing “Green|Blue” in the Chapter House at Exeter Cathedral, and would be delighted if you would join me for a Private Viewing.
One of the brill things happening during Art Week Exeter 2017 was the AWEsome Art Show featuring work by most of the participating artists.
For Art Week Exeter, I thought I’d open my newly-painted garage studio up to the world. Complete with kettle and lots of cake. It was a chance to show some of my work since 2014, and to ask for ideas for art in St Loyes.
This was my second trip to Pint of Science. In 2015, I took “Particulart” into The Ship Inn. In 2017, it was the turn of both “Green|Blue” and “Little Colouring Books” in the Exeter Phoenix workshop room. With a small bar in the corner, pints were assured.
Along Broadfields Road in St Loyes, the roads are named after English composers and it’s always summer. A goodly number came and joined Sine Nomine in serenading the neighbourhood with the music of each composer on their eponymous street corner.
Three days to the start of Art Week Exeter, 13-21 May 2017, and I’m burning the midnight oil prepping contributions to an installation and an exhibition, one concert, one talk, and two days of open studio. So here’s a nice soothing sunset…
My map is a comfort blanket. Its grid lines are a safety net that give me the confidence to stride out. It gives me a sense of being in control.
I’m delighted that “Green|Blue: Exe” has been selected to show in “The Observatory: Perspectives on landscape, society and spirit” in Exeter University Forum during 11-18 June 2017.
Written for TEDxExeter 2017 “HOPE”: Reflections on death, and that even in the darkest places and the fiercest storms, there is always hope.
The Garden Room Gallery is a lovely space for a show, just down the hill from the main buildings on the Dartington Hall estate. It was a first opportunity to show my new framing of “Green|Blue”, together with “Drop Slow Tears”.
Written for TEDxExeter 2017 “HOPE”: Images are extraordinarily powerful. Those able to see, see before we learn to read, and orient our world by sight. They can convey truth, and they can manipulate, so should we be hopeful or despairing?
Written for TEDxExeter 2017 “HOPE”: During 82 seconds on Wednesday 22 March, Briton Khalid Masood drove a car into pedestrians on Westminster Bridge, killing and injuring more than 50 people; fatally stabbed an unarmed police officer in New Palace Yard; and was shot and killed by an armed police officer. Over the next fortnight, these were some of the responses.
Written for TEDxExeter 2017 “HOPE”: Hope can come from unlikely sources… What would be the most unlikely and surprising source of all?
“Kuuki : the things we take for granted, but cannot live without” is a response to climate change and other environmental concerns, and a statement on the desperate need for social change.
I’ve just received an email to say that “Green|Blue” has been accepted for the splendidly-entitled Fringe Arts Bath show “Primordial Soup” at the equally splendid-looking Cleveland Pools, to appear 26 May to 11 June.
The three factors that seem to have the greatest influence on increasing our happiness are our ability to reframe our situation more positively, our ability to experience gratitude, and our choice to be kind and generous. — from The Book of Joy, with Dalai Lama, Desmond Tutu and Douglas
Liz McGowan and I have been hard at work today hanging our joint exhibition in the Garden Room Gallery at Dartington Hall. We’re really looking forward to welcoming you to the show, which runs from Thursday 30th March to Tuesday 18th April.
Written for TEDxExeter 2017 “HOPE”: Sometimes it’s easy to lose hope, but sometimes hope can come from unlikely sources.
I’m delighted to be showing my work “Green|Blue” at Dartington Hall. I will be sharing the space with Liz McGowan, who will be showing “Will-a-Wix”, and we would like to invite you to a Private Viewing.
Written for TEDxExeter 2017 “HOPE”: Music has played an important role in many social movements, bringing hope to millions, fostering community, and encouraging perseverance in the face of seemingly insurmountable odds.
I’m delighted to announce that “Green|Blue” will be appearing in the Chapter House at Exeter Cathedral from 28 May to 4 June.
Written for TEDxExeter 2017 “HOPE”: The Dalai Lama and Archbishop Desmond Tutu got together for a week to talk about the challenges of living a joyful life. The result was “The Book of Joy”.
Clare Bryden. Wiggle room in the universe. The Porch Magazine, October 2016.
“Suppose you had the revolution you are talking and dreaming about. Suppose your side had won, and you had the kind of society that you wanted. How would you live, you personally, in that society? Start living that way now!” – Paul Goodman. Clare Bryden embraces Rebecca Solnit’s vision of Hope in the Dark.
A series of things that interest me which have a TED or TEDx angle: The data and statistics that are being collected about us reflect our selves and the way we see the world.
Armageddon outta here…
There is immense power when a group of people with similar interests gets together to work toward the same goals.
A series of things that interest me which have a TED or TEDx angle: Reflections on Susan Cain’s TED talk “The Power of Introverts” and lessons from “Watership Down”.
Written for TEDxExeter 2017 “HOPE”: What was the last line we saw Carrie Fisher (albeit a CGI-reconstructed ever-youthful Carrie Fisher) deliver in a movie before she died?
Last week, I received the good news that “Green|Blue” has been selected for showing in the Garden Room Gallery at Dartington Hall. Today I got confirmation that the dates will be 30 March – 18 April 2017.
Fantastic coverage of both the “Little colouring books” and “Freefall Climate Graffiti” in the Winter issue of Green Christian.
This was a follow-up project to my consultancy work in 2009/10 on energy and climate change work in Exeter Diocese, to analyse progress based on evidence from Archdeacons’ Articles of Enquiry, and write a report for presentation at Diocesan Synod.
The idea for the “Little colouring books” originated partly in the games I made for my “Particulart: Up in the Air” show. It seemed a natural progession to create more playful engagement with climate change. Although the maps are of the UK, they can be applied elsewhere, and I am very happy that they have made their way to other lands.
Particulart features this month in the “What is Art?” issue of Average Art Magazine, 1 December 2016. In its use of knitting as a medium for a message, Particulart is an example of ‘craftivism’. But is it art?
What will you do now with the gift of your left life? — Snow
Clare Bryden. Particulart: the art of knitting, chemistry, and gentle protest. Average Art Magazine, “What is Art?” issue, 1 December 2016.
I created “One Fish, Two Fish, RGB Fish” in response to an invitation from Wool on the Exe and Theatre Alibi to participate in a community project benefiting Knit for Peace.
I introduced my new work and together we explored “GreenlBlue”, which uses flood risk data from the Environment Agency to question our knowledge and power in the face of uncertainty and the force of nature.
In modern times, origami has been used as a beacon of hope. I created the origami “Soul Cube” to help me get past that powerful critical voice in my head and access the deeper nurturing wise voice that speaks words I need to hear.
A series of things that interest me which have a TED or TEDx angle: The benefits of collecting so many statistics on the number of times a talk is viewed and the related web pages are accessed.
This week I’ve been geeking out at Graphical Web, “an annual, global conference that showcases the many new open source technologies available for presenting visual information on the web.”
The launch of a new magazine providing a space for slow conversation about beautiful and difficult things; a message from the editor, Gareth Higgins; and news that I have a piece in it!
In 2007, the Turnip Prize disqualified Banksy from competition for “trying too hard”. In 2016, I think I probably tried too hard.
A series of things that interest me which have a TED or TEDx angle: There are myriads of reasons why people watch TED and TEDx talks, and myriads of outcomes.
Clare Bryden. Notes for a small island. Church Times, 28 October 2016.
As sterling wobbles, Clare Bryden investigates revolutionary approaches to money and economics
An anonymous note from ‘A concerned neighbour’ and my response.
Five of the eight “Ghost Bees” I knitted for TRAIL and three of Cleo’s four remained at the end of the summer. My five are currently appearing in a gem of an exhibition at the Barnfield Theatre.
“Fun Palaces is a movement campaigning for culture by, for and with all – with a firm belief that community belongs at the core of all culture – and an annual weekend of events… Everyone an Artist, Everyone a Scientist.”
I’ve been doing some work for TEDxExeter on a new learning initiative, a series of education pods based around themed TEDxExeter talks. We’re calling it Let’s Explore… and so far have covered Happiness (ie mental health) and Nature.
Believe the compliments you are given. Give yourself the benefit of the doubt. Don’t doubt the benefits of being the brightest shade of you on the spectrum. — Take Up Space
I’m delighted that my Ghost Bees are going to appear during October in the Barnfield Theatre gallery.
It’s a toy shop that isn’t a toy shop, full of toys that aren’t toys.
I was at the Greenbelt Festival over the August bank holiday. As part of a fantastic weekend, I gave a Pecha Kucha talk about my art work, and “Particulart: Up in the Air” popped up in the Allotment Gallery.
For the second time, I was at Greenbelt giving a PechaKucha about my artwork. Last year it was about “Particulart”. This year I was showing “Particulart” in the Allotment Shed gallery on Sunday, and my PechaKucha on Saturday was about my work and motivations more generally.
I’ve finally finished my fourth and fifth “Little colouring books of climate mindfulness”. You can now get hold of “Winter Blues”, “Summertime”, “Middle Course”, “Grandchildren” and “Worst Case” in the shop.
Whether you think that you can, or that you can’t, you are usually right. Failure is simply the opportunity to begin again, this time more intelligently. Obstacles are those frightful things you see when you take your eyes off your goal. Don’t find fault, find a remedy. Thinking is the hardest work there is, which … Read more
You are welcome to download my instructions for making “Ghost Bees”, which includes a knitting pattern for the body, a size guide for cutting out the wings from milk cartons, and instructions for assembly.
This summer, if you happen to be wandering along the Teignmouth sea-front, you will happen across twelve “Ghost Bees” hovering in the flower bed between Pavilions and Pier.
A series of things that interest me which have a TED or TEDx angle. First up, Brexit and young people and how to get them to vote.
Some people suggested they would like to buy my artwork. So I have set up an online shop, where you can get hold of prints and greetings cards based on “Touch:Triptych”, “Green|Blue”, and “Little colouring books”.
The overall aim of Particulart is to engage people with environmental and social issues and challenge the status quo through the power of knitting, science, and public art. In addition, “Exhausted” aimed to promote public awareness and provoke reflection on urban air quality, through a quirky display enabling playful interaction. It appeared at “Test Drive the Future”, an exhibition of electric vehicles, that will help solve the problem of air pollution.
The overall aim of Particulart is to engage people with environmental and social issues and challenge the status quo through the power of knitting, science, and public art. In addition, “Greenhouse Effect” aimed to promote public awareness and provoke reflection on climate change and the underlying science, through appealing to different ways of accessing information – words and numbers, sight and touch – and enabling playful interaction.
This weekend, there are going to be not one… not two… but yes OK two Particulart events in Oxford as part of Low Carbon Oxford Week, and they’re both brand new exhibitions and both FREE!!
Whenever I have approached them, Reconnect have always been really helpful with publishing my news. Here’s their snippet about “Freefall Climate Graffiti”.
I confess to getting slightly confused by Exeter Life, Exeter Living, Devon Live, Devon Life … but we made it into a glossy!
And to me, if you really want to rediscover wonder, you need to step outside of that tiny, terrified space of rightness and look around at each other and look out at the vastness and complexity and mystery of the universe and be able to say, ‘Wow, I don’t know. Maybe I’m wrong.’ — On … Read more
Just had confirmation that my new Ghost Bees are going to be appearing in Teignmouth Recycled Art in the Landscape… yay!
The visible results of Freefall Climate Graffiti at the Exeter Phoenix will be ephemeral. Have a drink in the café outside seating area, and ponder the graffiti climate maps of the UK, before they’re painted over. Help yourself from, and add to, the woolly wall. Pick up a booklet about the project from the Phoenix box office.
Repainting Exeter Phoenix’s graffiti wall with UK Climate Projections, with Miss*C and the Freefall Youth Group.
The other TED. The Exeter Daily bills itself as “your Daily: You make the news”, ie you contribute and write the news. I’m not sure how many people read it either, but it seems worth including in the press release list. So here’s something I wrote earlier…
Finally on the Saturday we could get down to the real painting. It was brilliant to see most of the Freefall group join us for a session outside their regular Thursday evening slot.
A nice piece on p19 of the Express and Echo. Pics of Cleo enjoying herself clearing up, and of me up a ladder in my paint-spattered oldest of old clothes, appropriately next to “Model agency searches for the next star”!
Making the stencils was a big job, literally. We are going to build up the images from a base layer of the main colour, and add the other colours as layers on top. It means we can be canny re what stencils we need.
While the Freefall youth group took it in turns to bluewash the Phoenix graffiti wall… the Met Office knitting group gave the others a crash course in crafting, and much crochet and more pompoms were created.
A few greenhouse gases and accompanying information are currently winging their way over to Wallingford. They will be popping up as part of an event under the Oxfordshire Artweeks umbrella.
This week and the next two weeks Cleo Heard and I are running workshops with the Freefall youth group in preparation for painting the Phoenix graffiti wall with the UK Climate Projections during Art Week Exeter. As well as climate science and street art, Workshop 1 also covered design for colour blindness.
Free Art Friday is a worldwide movement that has existed for many years. I started Free Art Friday Exeter in July 2015, and collaborate with other artists in leaving pieces in public places to be discovered and taken for free.
I’ve been working on a set of 21 images of flood risk around the south coast of England, from Sussex to Bristol. What has emerged is a beautiful forest of sometimes fragile, sometimes twisted trees.
In prosperity, may you grant perseverance to will one thing Amid distraction, collectedness to will one thing In suffering, patience to will one thing. — Purity of Heart Is to Will One Thing
Clare was honoured to be able to show Particulart at TEDxExeter 2016, in between a nice lot of Particulart-relevant talks(!) such as Danny Dorling on different ways of mapping the world, Alan Smith on how statistics are about Us, and the video of Al Gore’s latest TED talk on climate change.
Written for TEDxExeter 2016 “Dreams to Reality”: Even in football, it is possible to have dreams of community, to play as a team instead of individual starlets.
Written for TEDxExeter 2016 “Dreams to Reality”: How we can help shape the place we live, through local government and at the grass roots.
Written for TEDxExeter 2016 “Dreams to Reality”: Martin Luther King dreamed of a better world, and he had been to the mountaintop. And yet it wasn’t about the mountain, but about the view over the mountain to what lies ahead.
Here’s the thing, if we have goals and dreams, and we want to do our best, and if we love people and we don’t want to hurt them or lose them, we should feel pain when things go wrong. The point isn’t to live without any regrets. The point is to not hate ourselves for … Read more
On 14th May, the route between the Exeter Phoenix arts centre and Exeter Library will be transformed, as the Freefall Youth Group wield spray cans and stencils to create a new graffiti artwork. The work, called Freefall Climate Graffiti, will feature maps of the UK showing how our climate could change in future decades.
Written for TEDxExeter 2016 “Dreams to Reality”: Some individuals have forgotten the songlines. They have become alienated from the land and cannot bear too much reality.
Written for TEDxExeter 2016 “Dreams to Reality”: What is your dream? Are you willing to let it upend your reality?
Written for TEDxExeter 2016 “Dreams to Reality”: In his dreams, Einstein imagines many possible worlds, set in the towns of his homeland, in the valleys of the Alps, on the banks of the River Aare
Written for TEDxExeter 2016 “Dreams to Reality”: When you wish upon a star, you’re a few million lightyears late. That star is dead. Just like your dreams.
That’s nothing to do with the 1980s pop group, but the Festival of Weather, Art and Music. The 2016 event was all about “Extreme Weather and You”, and there were loads of activities on the programme, from print-making to climate roulette.
The fantastic folk in Fore Street Exeter are holding a Cheese and Wine Fundraiser for Refugees, to include a raffle of artworks and craft. I am donating a carbon dioxide molecule, also under the aegis of Free Art Friday Exeter. Further donations from artists and makers still very welcome.
Exciting news! From nugget of an idea to almost fully-funded project in less than a week! Clare and Cleo present… Freefall Climate Graffiti.
Written for TEDxExeter 2016 “Dreams to Reality”: Tread softly because you might be treading on others’ dreams… or your own.
Clare Bryden. A hymn to bees. Third Way Magazine, March 2016.
As the first shoots and blooms appear, Clare Bryden welcomes the returning buzz of bees, and takes a year-round look at the complex threats to these and other pollinators so necessary to the interconnected web of creation.
Today I p-p-picked up a pilot from the University printshop. I am very excited to see my idea for presenting the UK Climate Projections 2009 as a colour-by-numbers booklet coming to fruition! So, I present to you…
Written for TEDxExeter 2016 “Dreams to Reality”: For Carl Jung, dreams were a window on the unconscious, enabling the dreamer to communicate with and come to know the unconscious, and tap into it as a source of creativity.
Written for TEDxExeter 2016 “Dreams to Reality”: In the UK, the dream of suffrage has been succeeded by the dream of full equality for women.
Written for TEDxExeter 2016 “Dreams to Reality”: “All we need to begin with is a dream that we can do better than before. All we need to have is faith, and that dream will come true. All we need to do is act, and the time for action is now.”
Written for TEDxExeter 2016 “Dreams to Reality”: An introduction to the series… Once upon a time, the Old English dream meant “joy, mirth, noisy merriment” or “music”.
Start a new project, set a new goal or find a way to inspire others, on your own terms. Don’t just use your talent, give it away at every opportunity. To share it is to feed it. — On Literary Envy
“Something Wonderful in My Back Yard – The Musical” was originally conceived by producer Chloe Uden, and written by poet Matt Harvey and composer Thomas Hewitt Jones. The musical songbook features “Particulart” and the pattern for knit-your-own carbon dioxide!
The Holy Ground service happens once a month in Exeter Cathedral. The evenings very often engage in social issues, which is why this December it was held to coincide with the Paris climate negotiations, and why the “Up in the Air” pop-up made a special appearance.
Exeter Cathedral is hosting an “Up in the Air” video installation for the duration of the Paris climate negotiations. I’m proud that it is part of ArtCOP21, the global climate art festival.
Oh God! May I be alive when I die.
Abingdon is my home town, so I took the opportunity to be a visiting speaker at the Carbon Cutters monthly meeting.
My talk at Abingdon Carbon Cutters tonight receives some advance publicity in the Oxford Mail.
Antiphon’s “O My People” is “A collection of sublime 20th and 21st century a cappella choral music, including several world première recordings.” We recorded it in August 2015 in the magnificent acoustic of the Lady Chapel in Exeter Cathedral.
Exeter Pound is the city’s own currency, aimed at supporting independent enterprises and promoting a more flourishing local economy. From 2015-16 I served on the Board of the Exeter Pound Community Interest Company.
Written for TEDxExeter 2016 “Dreams to Reality”: In 2016, we want to encapsulate the idea of movement… that grappling with humanity’s toughest questions requires first a vision, a dream, and then action.
Who has put wisdom in the inward parts,
or given understanding to the mind?
Who has the wisdom to number the clouds?
Or who can tilt the waterskins of the heavens,
— Job 38:36-37
Drawing on my work at the Met Office, on the Shrinking the Footprint campaign in the Diocese of Exeter, as an Honorary Research Fellow at the University of Exeter, as a member of Transition Exeter, and while living in the eco-monastery at Mucknell Abbey.
Clare Bryden. When the world acted for the good. Church Times, 2 October 2015.
Agreements on ozone show how countries can do the right thing, says Clare Bryden
I did what I could, where I was, with what I had. — Paraphrasing Theodore Roosevelt
“Up in the Air” popped up for a second time at the Relight My Fire festival of energy and the arts run by RegenSW. Indoors this time, and slimmed down without roof or games area. It just about fit in the space.
Released on Ozone Day 2015, knitted representations of the three main stratospheric ozone depletion equations: the breakdown of CFC-11 in sunlight releasing a chlorine atom, and the cycle of ozone destruction catalysed by this chlorine.
Clare Bryden. More tea? Yes, and do take your time. Church Times, 11 September 2015.
A quick coffee might suit some, but there is no substitute for ritual, Clare Bryden discovers.
Exeter Green Fair on 5 September saw the debut of my new “Up in the Air” pop-up. Under a blue gazebo (the sky), I suspended eight pale blue hula hoops (clouds), and from these the eight greenhouse gases.
PechaKucha is a new way of doing Powerpoint presentations. There are 20 slides, which must be images only, and they change automatically every 20 seconds, so the talk is only 6 minutes 40 seconds in total. It becomes more of a performance than a presentation.
As part of the publicity for “Up in the Air” in July, I gave away my prototype for Particulart, the carbon dioxide that ended up a bit too big and time-consuming to knit. It was a bit of a wrench!
Particulart is the art of knitting, chemistry and gentle protest. It’s about engaging people with environmental and social issues and challenging the status quo through the power of knitting, science, and public art. You too can now knit your own chemistry using these patterns.
An artist is not a special kind of person, rather every person is a special kind of artist.
Particulart has been mentioned in Chemistry World, published by the Royal Society of Chemistry. Can’t get much more illustrious than that!
Hospiscare does amazing work in caring for terminally ill people and providing respite for their carers, and relies on the generosity of many people to continue this work. I have had a surprising number of connections with them, through friends, family friends, work, church, and singing. So I wanted to do something to help.
RegenSW asked me to write for its new blog “Power Culture: exploring our energy generation through the arts”. It took me 44 years to learn to follow the energy, so here’s the story of how Particulart sparked and took on its own energy…
I am almost certain that Didcot Power Station’s looming bulk sparked my interest in energy and shaped my environmental interests and career. But I am not the only person which it has sensitised. Many regard it as a blot on the landscape, many others have seen its sculptural appeal. A guest blog for Regen SW.
The overall aim of Particulart is to engage people with environmental and social issues and challenge the status quo through the power of knitting, science, and public art. In addition, “Up in the Air” aimed to promote public awareness and provoke reflection on climate change and the underlying science, through appealing to different ways of accessing information – words and numbers, sight and touch – and enabling playful interaction.
I didn’t know whether Up in the Air would be picked up by the local press, but the 23 July edition of Express and Echo gave it a couple of inches in What’s On, just before the end of the show.
“Sulphur hexafluoride’, ‘Tetrafluoromethane’ and ‘Fluorform’ [sic] might not be words you expect to see as part of your everyday art exhibition, but then again, Clare Bryden is not your everyday artist (if there even is such a thing!).”
As part of the Particulart: Up in the Air exhibition, Diana Moore of Particulart and Knit-Stop ran a knit-your-own carbon dioxide workshop.
An innovative art installation goes on show this week to bring alive the greenhouse gases that are causing climate change. Local artist Clare Bryden has been knitting larger than life versions of the particles and making card games. The exhibition, which will be on display from 11-24 July at the Glorious Art House in Fore Street Exeter, is designed to be a playful way of sparking people’s interest in the science and issue of climate change.
Buy a coffee and cake from the Glorious café on the ground floor, and wander up to the second floor gallery for 3D knitted molecules floating in the Earth’s atmosphere!
My first piece in my first exhibition! The three panels of Touch:Triptych together for the first time.
Creativity takes courage
On Monday 18th May, I took “Particulart” into the unfamiliar territory – The Ship Inn in the middle of Exeter – as part of the annual worldwide Pint of Science festival.
Clare Bryden. Knitting and other revolutionary acts. Third Way Magazine, May 2015.
As competing political voices reach election crescendo, could it be that artistic, home-spun forms of activism are more positive and quietly persuasive? Clare Bryden hails the rise of ‘Craftivism’ and explains how knitting can change the world.
I got some excellent news this morning. Exeter City Council have approved a small arts grant towards my next Particulart exhibition.
Written for TEDxExeter 2015 “Taking the Long View”: There’s an old African proverb that says “If you want to go quickly, go alone. If you want to go far, go together.” Also a tribute to the wonderful TEDxExeter team.
Written for TEDxExeter 2015 “Taking the Long View”: From Clause 40 in Magna Carta to HIllary Clinton via the suffragists and suffragettes – the long struggle for women’s political rights, and a call to vote on 7 May [sigh].
During Lent 2015 – 18 February to 4 April – the Church of England in the South West ran a Carbon Fast. It was 40 days to reflect on how we affect our planet and consider what we can do to reduce our carbon footprint. “A Stitch in Time” ran roughly concurrently, showing 3D knitted representations of a series of greenhouse gases that are implicated in climate change.
Written for TEDxExeter 2015 “Taking the Long View”: The short-termism of deforestation, and some hopeful examples of the long view of reafforestation.
Happiness takes effort. Also, courage. It’s incredibly comforting to know that as long as you don’t create anything in your life, then nobody can attack the thing you created.
Written for TEDxExeter 2015 “Taking the Long View”: The Guardian’s campaign to keep fossil fuels in the ground, a Lenten Carbon Fast; and how I take the long view in my knitting and arts practice.
Didcot Power Station dominated the landscape of my childhood. I am fairly sure that its looming bulk sparked my interest in energy, and possibly shaped my environmental interests and career. It has also generated a surprising level of artistic response.
Written for TEDxExeter 2015 “Taking the Long View”: Taking the literal view of the Long View, a smattering of quite interesting factoids about the origins of the telescope and its name; the transit of Venus and Cook’s voyages; and the Interplanetary Scintillation Array and other more modern telescopes.
You’ve probably heard of Lent fasts: giving up chocolate or biscuits or swearing for the 40 days before Easter. The Church of England in the south west is going to be running a Carbon Fast this year, and Particulart is going to be involved through a new exhibition in Bristol Cathedral.
Written for TEDxExeter 2015 “Taking the Long View”: The 800th anniversary of Magna Carta was the inspiration behind the 2015 theme. Why we chose that and not the 50th anniversary of the Sound of Music.
Last night, at somewhat short notice, I stepped into a breach and gave a St Michael’s Lecture. I liked the title so much, I adopted it for the work.
During Lent 2015, EcoChurch Southwest is promoting a Carbon Fast, focusing on water. You can sign up to daily emails containing an action, bible reading and reflection. I wrote about rain as a blessing for today’s reflection.
Particulart is all about knitting. It’s also all about the Exeter Incinerator, which was inaugurated on 16th October 2014, and about waste management strategy, and monitoring emissions, and the environment, and health, and transparency, and visual impact, and chemistry.
Today is the Feast of the Presentation of Christ at the Temple, otherwise known as Candlemas. Was establishment of the Feast linked to a volcanic eruption?
Just start… Don’t wait for perfection. Just start and let the work teach you. — The Blue Sweater
Clare Bryden. Cultural highlights of 2014: The Bookshop in Wigtown, Scotland. Third Way Magazine, February 2015.
Do not wait; the time will never be ‘just right.’ Start where you stand, and work with whatever tools you may have at your command, and better tools will be found as you go along.
The original “Particulart” was a collaboration between Clare Bryden and Diana Moore, exhibiting in the Exeter Real Food café during autumn 2014. Knitting and emitting particles was our way of telling other people about the Exeter Incinerator and its potential impacts.
I explore where our treasure lies in today’s world for the Bright Now Blog run by Operation Noah.
It’s difficult to choose my cultural highlight of 2014. It has been a good year so far, and it’s not over yet!
Good news! The Real Food Store has given us three more weeks, so you will be able to view the Particulart exhibition there until 29th November.
The complaint I made to the BBC for refusing to include the Green Party in the general election TV leader debates.
Today is Blog Action Day, and in 2014 the theme is Inequality. I’m afraid I’m going to cheat, and post stuff I’ve written earlier. Some is a bit dated (anyone remember Michael Gove?), but I think the core message is still relevant…
I’m exhausted, but feeling exhilarated and satisfied. Diana and I have managed to hang the show, with some absolutely critical help from Naomi Hart. So we’re all set to open to the punters on Monday.
We are in today’s Express and Echo. Page 44 isn’t quite “hold the front page!” but we still got a colour photo!
An innovative community art installation goes on show this week to bring alive the impacts of Exeter’s new ‘Energy from Waste’ incineration facility. Members of the community have been knitting larger than life versions of the particles that will be emitted from the new facility. The exhibition which will be on display at the Real Food Café in Paris Street, is designed to tell people about the incinerator, encourage Devon County Council to ensure it is operated properly over its 25 years contract and think harder about their future waste management strategy.
It’s been months in the planning and making, and now Particulart is at hand. The exhibition will be in the Real Food café from 13th October to 8th November, with a launch party on the evening of 15th October.
“Never compare someone else’s outside with your inside.” — In conversation at Greenbelt 2014
Clare Bryden. What the frack? Third Way Magazine, October 2014.
Depending who you ask, hydraulic fracturing – fracking – is either a panacea for our energy crisis or an environmental apocalypse in waiting. Clare Bryden drills through the propaganda in search of some answers.
Clare Bryden. A Spirit of Our Time. Resurgence Magazine online, September/October 2014.
Clare Bryden introduces Simone Weil, whose life and philosophy were one and the same.
BP has been found “grossly negligent” in the lead-up to the 2010 Deepwater Horizon oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico. I wrote a series of haikus in response to the original event, and other oil-related events past and imagined,
Many of my Facebook friends have changed their profile picture to the Arabic letter N. It stands for ‘Nazarene’, or Christian. ISIS is drawing it on the houses of Christians in Iraq, to indicate who to target.
When one hits mid-life, one is obligated to have a crisis, right?
Introducing the TEDxExeter 2015 theme of “Taking the Long View”: asking about the responsibilities the past places on us, and how taking the long view into the future can shape the way we live and the decisions we make.