In 2010 I wrote a series of four haiku spanning seven-year intervals in response to Deepwater Horizon: 1996, 2003, 2010, 2017. Now it’s 2023, maybe an update that ignites the will to keep plugging on would be helpful…
10 October is World Mental Health Day. During the preceding two weeks I practised Noticing Nature from the Greater Good in Action website.
Two haiku, one responding to the news of record September average global temperatures, and one celebrating a bit of biodiversity that is often overlooked.
Clare Bryden. Good Money Week: how to set up a social enterprise, Church Times, 29 September 2023.
Churches can express their faith and respond to community needs through social enterprises. Clare Bryden explains how to set one up
Artificial imagination of two trees in the style of
The ancient close-of-the-day service of Compline, with plainchant and polyphony. Hosted by Margaret Aagesen Hughes (Soprano) and Clare Bryden (Alto). Featuring musicians Andrew Maries (Oboe), Sophie Brewer (Flute), Catherine Bradley (Cello), John Draisey (Keyboard) and the music of Andrew Wilson.
“Have nothing in your houses that you do not know to be useful or believe to be beautiful” – William Morris
Knitting is coding. Input, operation, output, storage.
Clare Bryden. Tax for good: Zacchaeus as social reformer. Church Times, 30 September 2022.
Clare Bryden looks at how taxation can be used to make a fairer society
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 Barber, Bach and Pergolesi, and musicians Ruth Molins (Flute), Emma Welton (Violin), John Draisey (organ).
This week I’ve been doing a tiny bit of press for Prayerdle
On Monday I jumped fully onto the Wordle bandwagon and developed Prayerdle
Studio 36 has a wonderful noticeboard out front, hosting a continually changing series of shows of work by local artists. For Board 16 the wider Studio 36 community was invited to submit work relating to climate change.
Studies of colour, form and pattern that are below, around and above me.
When I moved to Exeter, one of the first things I did was to plant a tree. This year it’s gone ‘berserk’ and many of my neighbours have remarked on it… Which has led me to take more notice of it too.
I hope that at COP26 world leaders will hammer out a deal that will save our life support system. I hope that out of the darkness of despair, we can extend our wings and find our way to the light.
Clare Bryden. Good money after bad. Church Times, 1 October 2021.
Clare Bryden suggests ten ways to use personal finance for a better world
I have increasingly been feeling that I wanted to write more about my prayer and spirituality. I have therefore started a new blog…
As part of starting a new blog devoted to prayer and spiritual life, I have moved over the material on related workshops and group work.
As part of starting a new blog devoted to prayer and spiritual life, I have moved over the material on related installations.
As part of starting a new blog devoted to prayer and spiritual life, I have moved over the material on related performance.
“Elsewhere”, my piece of St Loy Cornwall washed up in St Loyes Exeter, has found a small niche as part of Studio 36’s second COVID publication.
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.
I went on an expedition today, all the way to Middlemoor roundabout, for a picnic lunch amidst the trees and daffodils.
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.
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?
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’.
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.
#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’.
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.
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.
Studies of form and pattern, inside and out, natural and artifical, found and artefact.
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.
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”.
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.
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?
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).
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 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.
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.
Reflections on walking and talking and bouncing a tennis ball in the streets of Exeter.
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.
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.
“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!!
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.
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.
Over the last few months, I’ve been collaborating with local artist Steven Bramble on producing an alphabet and font for the Quarry Pod.
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!
A bit of fun. Some of them are more favourite than others! Now with a second helping!
FALAFELS stands for Free Art Friday Exeter St Loyes Loves Anagrams. You have to think about it a bit!
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?
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.
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.
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!
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!
“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
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, Eco Church South West 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 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.
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!
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!
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.
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”.
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.
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.
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”.
“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.
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.
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.
I’m delighted to announce that “Green|Blue” will be appearing in the Chapter House at Exeter Cathedral from 28 May to 4 June.
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.
Armageddon outta here…
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.
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.
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.
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.”
In 2007, the Turnip Prize disqualified Banksy from competition for “trying too hard”. In 2016, I think I probably tried too hard.
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.”
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.
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.
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!!
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
Exciting news! From nugget of an idea to almost fully-funded project in less than a week! Clare and Cleo present… Freefall Climate Graffiti.
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…
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.
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.
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
“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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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, Eco Church South West 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?
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.
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.
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,
When one hits mid-life, one is obligated to have a crisis, right?
On the 3rd Sunday of each month, Holy Trinity Church Exmouth runs a Hard Questions Café, where tough life questions can be explored in a frank and non-judgemental way. Here are the stories and questions I used.
Seminars for people on the South West Ministry Training Course, training for ministry in the Church of England.
“I would ask you to take a walk on your own (where and at what time of day is up to you) for at least half an hour. I would like you to walk ‘as’ the last human survivor of a zombie apocalypse.”
Clare Bryden. Ethics on hold? Third Way Magazine, November 2013.
Is the smartphone in your pocket fuelling violence on the other side of the world? Clare Bryden asks some uncomfortable questions about our complex relationship with gadgets – and investigates new ways to connect more ethically.
Clare Bryden. How Place Shapes Prayer. Reform Magazine, November 2013.
Clare Bryden explores the spirituality of place in a Benedictine community in Worcestershire.
Clare Bryden. Far more than two’s company. Church Times, 11 October 2013.
Crowdfunding is one way of raising finance which can benefit church and community projects, and offer ethical projects for donors and investors, Clare Bryden discovers.
Yesterday was the feast day of St Francis of Assisi, the patron saint of the environment. So it’s appropriate that I spent the afternoon walking with Phil Mythogeography Smith in search of sacred and pseudo-sacred spaces.
Clare Bryden. Blackberrying for beginners. Resurgence Magazine, Sep/Oct 2013.
Shortlisted essay from the Resurgence & Ecologist Nature Writing Competition.
It happened! Possibly not one of the daftest ideas I’ve had, but must be one of the dafter ideas I’ve pursued.
Maslow’s hierarchy of needs is 70 years old. Here’s my version reflecting the hierarchy in the UK and US.
A list of the Twitter accounts of Devon County Councillors in Exeter wards.
I have been impressed in recent weeks at the usefulness of Twitter in engaging with councillors and other movers and shakers in and around Exeter City Council. Within limits, though, as you’ll be able to see from my list arranged by political party.
Look up post boxes on the internet, and you stumble into a strange and fascinating place.
Finally, on 3 September I received a letter dated 21 August in response to mine of 2 August. But I have some comments…
I have a dream of a mix of local retail, local business, charities and social entrepreneurs, artists’ studios and housing.
Clare Bryden. An appeal to inner values. Church Times, 30 August 2013.
Good causes will get further by emphasising their intrinsic worth rather than external rewards, argues Clare Bryden.
I’ve not yet received a direct response from Hugo Swire MP to my letter about the family from Clyst St George needing to walk 11 miles to Exeter Foodbank and back.
How we name our streets and public buildings is a reflection of the values of history and our values today. It subconsciously and subtly affects our self-worth.
How is it that in a country as wealthy as the UK, more than 500,000 people are reliant on food parcels? Please represent your constituents, and do something to address food poverty, injustice and inequality.
It was a hot bright day during the 2013 summer heatwave. I approached from below through the gardens recently planted with exotics from even hotter climes. I passed through a circular seating space, an antechamber, through a narrow door into a low and dark space stoppered by light in front and behind, and opened out suddenly into bright height.
Last year, I did the first half of a walk down the 1800s route of Woodwater Lane. I managed the western half as far as the Retail Park, before giving up due to the rain. Exactly one year later, I completed the journey.
OrganicARTS, based at West Town Farm near Ide, has done a lot of work with pottery using clay from the Farm, natural materials and dyes, and it has been an ambition to encourage writers too.
Now is the time when we most need our pollinators, and our pollinators need wildflowers to thrive. So I have been feeling sad over the last few days about the acres of wildflowers in the verges in Exeter that are being strimmed, and took it upon myself to protest a little…
Clare Bryden. Review of “Counter-Tourism: The Handbook” assembled by Crab Man. Third Way Magazine, June 2013.
Clare Bryden. Digging where we stand. Third Way Magazine, June 2013.
Driven by restless searching, our modern world often seems to undermine the very community we crave. But Clare Bryden believes that’s an invitation to dig deeper for the roots that truly sustain us.
Clare Bryden. As if people mattered, 40 years on. Church Times, 24 May 2013.
E. F. Schumacher’s ideas still need to be reckoned with, argues Clare Bryden.
Oh dear, I was writing about Silent Spring by Rachel Carson, then I was writing about modern criticism of the book, then I was writing about environmental regulation vs economic freedom, then I was quoting George Osborne, and it all went downhill from there. But I enjoyed the rant 🙂
In the 3 May edition of the Church Times, Bishop Anthony Priddis wrote an article extolling thorium: “Thorium: it’s green, nuclear, safe”. I have just sent a Letter to the editor in response, questioning his underlying assumptions.
My electricity monitor usefully shows how much I’m using, without me having to dig out the key in order to read the outdoor meter. I also want to know how I best I can use my lovely solar electricity.
It’s impossible and unhealthy to live with heightened anxiety over a long period of time. And scaring people and making them feel guilty are rubbish motivators of behavioural change.
Blackbird perched precariously in pyracantha, picking at plentiful berries. #ventriloquismforbeginners
There are several possible origins for the word ‘religion’ and its modern senses. None of these need imply certainty and rule out doubt. I want to go back to the etymological origins of ‘religion’, and ask a few questions. In the spirit of the TEDxExeter 2013 theme of Living the Questions, I’m not expecting to answer them.
Like many, one of my most vivid memories of infant school was the ritual of drinking our morning third-pint of milk.
I intended to spend the morning re-reading Annie Dillard’s Pilgrim at Tinker Creek, but instead spent the morning reading around it. So after lunch, I allowed the sun to call me out for a walk down by my very own Tinker Creek that is the Northbrook.
Clare Bryden. Visit a mythical land – our own. Review of “Mythogeography: A Guide to Walking Sideways” by Phil Smith. Reform Magazine, April 2013.
The Women Bishops Measure was lost in the House of Laity, by six votes. It might not be a rejection of women bishops, just the enabling legislation, but it sure feels like a rejection to me.
The Great Britain Family Names website allows you to find out where your surname comes from, and how many people share it. Bryden isn’t that common, but what interests me is the geographical spread.
Blog Action Day falls within Congo Week, and “The Power of We” is beautifully exemplified by the Congo Calling campaign.
Clare Bryden. Peril of eating all the pie. Review of “The Price of Inequality” by Joseph E. Stiglitz. Church Times, 12 October 2012.
Clare Bryden studies an analysis of the economic crisis.
Brueggemann: “the yearning for land is always a serious historical enterprise concerned with historical power and belonging. Such a dimension is clearly played upon by the suburban and exurban real estate ads that appeal to that rapacious hunger.”
There’s a rowan tree planted beside the bus stop on Grecian Way, and this autumn it’s laden with bright red berries.
In honour of Silent Spring, I spent two hours wandering around my neighbourhood and listening. Listening not just for birds, but for everything, including all those sounds we usually tune out.
Today is the 50th anniversary of the publication of Rachel Carson’s Silent Spring. In its honour, I am spending a couple of hours walking around my neighbourhood listening for bird song. In the meantime, here are three short posts I wrote a year and a half ago, reflecting on the book.
Today was the first time ever, at least for years, that I’ve seen another deliberate blackberrier in Ludwell Valley Park.
It was late afternoon when I walked down to Ludwell Valley Park to pick blackberries. I’d just started, around a kink in the hedge and mostly hidden from the gate, when I heard lads’ voices.
A response to Rebecca Solnit’s A Field Guide to Getting Lost and the BBC programme A History of Art in Three Colours, Blue.
The house martins were gathering and sporting on the wing, prior to departure for warmer climes, and Mark Lane from Wilderness Guide kindly popped over to see what plants we could find in Woodwater Lane in September.
Malbork Castle in Poland, built in the mediaeval period by the Teutonic Knights, is the largest castle in the world by surface area, and the largest brick building in Europe. I visited with a friend in 1992.
During 2009/10 I worked as a consultant on the Shrinking the Footprint campaign in the Diocese of Exeter, and the following year lived in the eco-monastery at Mucknell Abbey.
I cycled to the dog-walkers’ field above Ludwell Valley Park. I found blackberries. I picked blackberries. I cycled home. I made blackberry water ice.
A response to Phil Smith Mythogeography: a Guide to Walking Sideways.
Sometimes the mystery and the not-knowing are more satisfying and enjoyable than solution.
I’ve always had a problem with buses. Mythogeography tells me to get on a random bus, and see where it takes me for a set number of stops. But I’m able to end up here there and everywhere, even when I’m just trying to get home.
I was away from Exeter for a couple of weeks, and when I returned (though I returned) I remained absent. It was several days before I remembered it was ‘high summer’ and there was free fruit to be had in Ludwell Valley Park and along the suburban margins.
Much of the stone used to build St Loyes Chapel looks as though it came from Heavitree Quarry, but there were many other types of stone there.
Clare Bryden. It’s the equality, stupid. Church Times, 30 July 2012.
Measures of wealth and poverty are complex and subtle; but there is one simple factor, argues Clare Bryden.
When did the Heavitree quarries stop being worked? The old maps provide some evidence.
Seeing the stone in St Loyes Chapel made me want to walk back up Quarry Lane and look for evidence of the quarry.
It’s a pleasant little segment in Rifford Road, set in a garden surrounded with metal railings. There is a bus-stop in front, and it is very ease to miss St Loyes Chapel altogether if you don’t know it is there.
Once upon a time I saw a very old OS map of Exeter in the Treasures of the British Library exhibition. Now through the miracle of Google, I know that it was the Drawing for the first edition Ordnance Survey map of Exeter. 1801 Maps OSD 40.(3).
I spent a day immured in the office at the computer, feeling wintry-cold while it rained and rained. By night-time, I was completely frowstie at being stuck indoors. As the rain had pretty much dried up, I decided on some mythogeography. Going for walks at odd times, like 10.30pm, follows mythogeographical principles, after all.
I found this marvellous book from 1892 in the Westcountry Studies Library, now Devon Archives and Local Studies.
As a birthday treat, I promised myself a walk down Woodwater Lane, from home to water to wood to home again. A satisfying experimentation in exploring the present day.
Yesterday, cycling down a section of Woodwater Lane, I noticed a corn cockle in the bank. It struck me that I have cycled down the lane many a time, walked down it occasionally, picked blackberries at that time of year, but I have never really paid attention to it.
It was a happy accident that the house I bought when I moved to Exeter is very close to Ludwell Valley Park. It is my slice of countryside in the city, where I can wander down enclosed lanes, through fields of nodding purple grasses.
This week I am happy because “my” house martins have returned. It happened on Tuesday. As I was sitting at my desk, suddenly there was a rush of gurgling and chuckling, and I looked out of my window to see madcap aerobatics.
Narnia is by no means a fairy fantasy land. CS Lewis’ stories include powerful myth, in the sense of narrative telling a deeper truth. Totnes is the cradle of the Transition movement, another powerful story.
“We need to be able to see the cause of our problems in the landscapes of our lives”, because “it’s pictures that helps stories come alive”.
Last night, I heard Ben Bradshaw, MP for Exeter, speak about “The Church and Civil Partnerships”. He prefaced his talk with some science. But people don’t believe what they believe because of the science.
Clare Bryden. Review of “Sharing Possessions” by L.T.Johnson. Modern Believing, Volume 53:2, April 2012.
On the day that the government lost its Feed-In Tariff appeal in the Court of Appeal, the guys from Sungift Solar started to install PVs on my house.
Evening meal; lunchtime walk around the Exminster Marshes, and the Exe Canal and Estuary around the Turf Hotel and Topsham
The monastic practice of lectio divina allows us to open ourselves to God’s word. It can be loosely translated as ‘spiritual reading’, but does not just involve reading.
On 29 September, Phil Hammond, the then Transport Secretary, proposed increasing the speed limit on motorways to 80mph. We may as well, mayn’t we? After all, Department for Transport figures show that as many as 49% of drivers currently flout the current 70mph limit.
The Tories dropped the Big Society into their 2010 Manifesto, but have never explained satisfactorily what they meant. Here are some possible interpretations…
People don’t make decisions based on rational assessment of facts; they make decisions according to how they fit with their values and identity. Psychologists classify values as either extrinsic, which concern status and success, or intrinsic, which concern relationships and benevolence. How can we make intrinsic values go viral?
Thoughts around the L of the LOAF principles – Local, Animal friendly, Organic, Fairtrade – and how you apply these principles when confronted by a bewildering array of choices.
Clare Bryden. Listen intently and then get your hands dirty. Church Times, Issue 7749, 23 September 2011.
After a year living in community at Mucknell, Clare Bryden offers a Benedictine perspective on the crisis in sustainability.
Clare Bryden. Lessons on sustainable living, with the green monks [and nuns!] of Mucknell. Guardian, Comment is Free: Belief, 15 September 2011.
Spending a year with Benedictine monks has taught me how to cultivate a healthy environmental idealism rooted in reality.
During 2010-11, I lived alongside Mucknell Abbey, a mixed Benedictine community in the Church of England. Early in the period, the community moved in to their new eco-monastery. I supported them in establishing a pattern of sustainable living, which included creating a series of articles and factsheets about Sustainability on their website.
Forget dendrochronology, there’s a new compound -ology in town: astroseismology.
A poem inspired by Iona, and commended in Earthing Faith’s “Inspired by Creation” competition, October 2010.
Clare Redfern and Clare Bryden. Green, not grandiose. Church Times, Issue 7693, 27 August 2010.
Churches should join forces with the Transition movement to promote sustainable living, say Clare Redfern and Clare Bryden.
An experiment in a geo-located poem, August 2010.
The purpose of the project in 2009-10 was to trial an Environment Officer post in Exeter Diocese, to support church organisations in implementing recommendations of energy audits, and to undertake other activities supporting the Church of England’s Shrinking the Footprint programme.
Poem published in Poetry Scotland, Late Spring 2010.
Clare Bryden. Climate Change, a new prophetic ministry for Anglican Religious? Mucknell Abbey, March 2010.
“The world’s faith communities are among the oldest and most enduring of institutions. You can, and do, inspire people to change. As we take the final steps on our journey to Copenhagen, that inspiration is critical.” — UN Secretary General Ban Ki Moon.
Papers and articles written as part of my work at the Met Office during 2005-07 on health forecasting and anticipatory care, and accepted by peer-review for publication.
Abstracts written as part of my work at the Met Office during 2005-07 on health forecasting and anticipatory care, and accepted by peer-review for conference posters or talks.
Talks and conference papers given as part of my work at the Met Office during 2005-07 on health forecasting and anticipatory care.
Reports written as part of my work at the Met Office during 2000-01 on modelling and forecasting low cloud, that were subsequently released online.
Reports written as a consultant at Cambridge Econometrics during 1995-2000, that were subsequently published. Variously on modelling the Chinese economy, the UK electricity supply industry, renewables and energy efficiency, and meeting climate targets.
Paper written as part of my work at Cambridge Econometrics during 1992-95 on achieving climate targets through fiscal policy, and accepted by peer-review for publication.