Know Your Place
In Partnership with
With thanks to Arts Council England and Argent.
Writers in residence can now be found in many places: at airports, bus stations, in shops and even on the Tube. But what impact do these residencies really have on the people, places and organisations involved, and how do they, in turn, shape the writing that's created? What are the objectives of those who employ writers this way, and what impact do these have on the writers themselves? What role do writers have – and what role could they have - in regeneration and place-making?
Charles Beckett, Literature Officer for Arts Council England, London.
Sarah Butler, Director of Urban Words, and writer of 'Central Line Stories'
Tamsin Dillon, Head of Art on the Underground
Emma Hewett, Director of Spread the Word
Kat Joyce, writer of Spread the Word's Neighbourhood Commission, 'One Mile Away'
Lemn Sissay, whose residency at the Southbank Centre created GPS (the Global Poetry System).
Staff at the German Gymnasium are happy to provide a free, short introductory talk on the King's Cross development to attendees. Please arrive at the venue at 5.30pm if you would like this.
Tuesday 2 February
6pm – 8pm
26 Pancras Road
Train/Tube: Kings' Cross
In the lead up to Know Your Place – we are collecting together a series of short case studies to whet your appetite and spark questions to put to our panellists prior to the event. These case studies are now online. Central line stories took place in 2009: a residency by Sarah Butler working with London Underground staff, commissioned by Art on the Underground. One Mile Away was a residency commissioned by Spread the Word based in and around Spread The Word’s office in Lambeth Walk, by writer Kat Joyce and theatre Director Nathan Curry. Once you've read about these projects we'd like to know what questions or issues you think they raise and which could be a focus for the debate. What more would you like to know about the projects? Are there others which you think are comparable? Please email Emma Hewett with your questions/responses at firstname.lastname@example.org by Monday 25th January.Charles Beckett is a Literature Officer at Arts Council England, London, where he has responsibility for supporting writers, independent publishers, and digital technology in the literature sector. Charles has worked with writers to develop residency projects in London and internationally, and with Sarah Butler and Spread the Word on the Urbanwords project.
Sarah Butler writes novels and short fiction, and has a particular interest in how creative writing can explore, question and strengthen our relationship with place. She is director of UrbanWords, a consultancy which actively explores and develops literature projects that engage with regeneration and urban renewal. www.urbanwords.org.uk
Tamsin Dillon has worked to develop the significant reputation of Art on the Underground, since 2003, through the opportunities it provides for artists to make new work and for millions of Tube travellers to encounter art. Tamsin was Curator at Chisenhale Gallery 2000 to 2002 and has also worked in a number of galleries and other contexts. Tamsin is a member of the London Regional Arts Council, the Board of Trustees for Turner Contemporary in Margate and the Commissioning Group for the Fourth Plinth in Trafalgar Square.
Emma Hewett is Director of Spread the Word – London’s leading writer development agency. She has worked in the organisation since 2001 in a variety of roles including education and programming. Previous to that she worked at the Poetry Book Society and BAC. She lives in Peckham with her son.
Kat Joyce is director/playwright/scenographer/dramaturg interested in making live performance through a variety of starting points - physical, literal and spatial. She was Writer-In-Residence at Spread the Word during 2009, during which time she created One Mile Away, a play/project about a one-mile area of South London. She is also Associate Director of physical theatre ensemble Tangled Feet, and is undertaking a PhD in alternative dramaturgy methods at Royal Holloway.
Lemn Sissay is the author of five poetry collections the latest being Listener (2008). He performs his poetry worldwide and last year completed a successful tour of South Africa where he appeared to great acclaim at the famous Market Theatre in Johannesburg. Lemn is a regular contributor to BBC Radio Four’s Saturday Live and is currently artist in residence at The South Bank Centre.