In March 2018, the CCFT group made a short visit (my first) to the village of Agios Sozomenos, in Cyprus: a “ghost” village, whose continuous occupation was interrupted by the island’s intercommunal conflict and whose ruins have now stood entirely uninhabited for many years. The site is redolent of the island’s history and with the presences and absences of its former residents.

 

In October 2019, the CCFT group returned to Cyprus, this time to Nicosia and to the actual site of the UN Buffer zone between Northern and Southern Cyprus, to take part in the annual Buffer Fringe Festival.

 

In both cases I created small actions or interventions at the locations in which the group was working. Each reflecting the development of my research practice at that time. In the case of the “no man’s land” of the UN Buffer zone, as the starting point for my work, I brought with me an auto-fictional text with which I was then working, which addressed the theme of silences and break-down’s in interpersonal, intergenerational communication and placed this personal exploration in the context of other practitioners’ work, dealing with different orders of silence and other gulfs of ineffability that arise between interlocutors. As it was read, this text was spread out line by line, in the dirt of the buffer zone’s inter-communal interstice; “pinned” in place by small fragments of glass and stone and berries found amongst the dirt.

 

In the case of the abandoned village, with the help of Ana Souto, I created an ephemeral installation in one of the remaining building’s shells, comprised of the shell itself and a ball of wool. The lines of thread left by Ana’s movement’s back and forth are ambiguous: they could equally trace the movements of long absent inhabitants or the trajectories of bullets, though they may equally serve to draw the viewer’s attention to the void between the abandoned building’s walls.

CCFT fieldwork: Mar 2018 untitled performance, Agios Sozomenos, Cyprus. Video work and Oct 2019 'Between our words I will trace your presence' (2nd iteration) performance at Buffer Fringe Festival, Nicosia, photo documentation

Since 2018 I have been working with and loosely affiliated to a group of artists collectively involved in an ongoing project, under the banner CCFT, Creative Centre for Fluid Territories. This involvement has entailed field work at three locations: two in Cyprus, one in Norway, between March 2018 and October 2019. The artists involved used these intense periods of fieldwork each lasting three to five days in different ways. I chose to use each as an experimental test-bed for trying out new ideas in my practice.

 

Each of the three sessions of situated fieldwork gave rise to an action or event or performance, on my part, however, beyond the specifics of these performances, perhaps the most significant contribution of these experiments and experiences to my practice has been in helping to develop a way of working intensively at a site; responding to the histories, the stories and the material resources that each site uniquely has to offer, in an intuitive and improvisatory way and yet still within the terms of my overall research preoccupations.

 

In each case I went through what I would describe as a process of searching out some specific facet of the site’s topology, ecology or history, which intersected with my research’s emergent themes and which allowed me to respond to what would in each case otherwise be a site of such historical import that any fleeting engagement would seem at best dilettante and at worst simply crass. It has been a process of “going small”; of burrowing around the “big” story, which in each case characterises the site in historical terms, to find some other and more personal entry point into work-making and story-telling.

 

The fieldwork in Norway, in November 2018, took place at the village of Tælavåg, on the Atlantic West coast, historically, the site of the nationally significant Tælavåg Tragedy during World War II. My work there, which focused ostensibly not on the tragedy itself, but on the area’s ecology, proved explicitly significant in the development of my research’s themes and my thinking about its objects and is archived and annotated, elsewhere in this RC exposition. The experiments arising from my two visits to Cyprus are detailed and documented here.


 

above: untitled performance, Agios Sozomenos, Cyprus. Video work, 2018

below: 'Between our words I will trace your presence' (2nd iteration) performance at Buffer Fringe Festival, Nicosia, photo documentation, 2019


 

Introduction

________________________________________________________________________

 

Oct-Dec 2016, rolled bedding, recently vacated apartment room, Nygardsgaten, Bergen. Photograph 

 

Oct-Dec 2016, unoccupied rooms, forensic investigation training house, Nottingham. Photographs

 

Oct-Dec 2016, unoccupied room, forensic investigation training house. Video

 

Apr 2017 recently vacated room, asylum hostel, Voss. Photograph

 

Apr 2017 recently vacated room, asylum hostel, Voss. Video work

________________________________________________________________________

 

Feb 2017, 'Birdsong'.

________________________________________________________________________

 

Mar 2017 material from PKU Spring Forum, first presentation

 

Mar 2018 PKU Spring Forum, second presentation

 

Apr 2018 paper delivered to 2018 SAR conference, Plymouth

 

Mar 2019 PKU Spring Forum, third and final presentation

________________________________________________________________________

 

May 2017 'A performance after a performance', Voksenåsen, Video work

_________________________________________________________ 

 

Aug - Oct 2017 video work: coats in corridor, chairs in gymnasium, nr. Helsinki; rolled-bedding, recently vacated apartment, Bergen

 

Nov 2017 the empty walls of DH's studio

________________________________________________________________________

 

Oct 2017 'Between, Before, After, Elsewhere'. Exhibition at Kunstgarasjen, Bergen

 

Jan 2018 KMD, image and situatedness

________________________________________________________________________

 

Feb 2018 'The objects perform themselves', Bergen. Photo & Video documentation of performance

________________________________________________________________________

 

Mar 2018 CCFT fieldwork, Agios Sozomenos, Cyprus

________________________________________________________________________

 

June 2018 initial tests with hospital ventilators. Video documentation

 

Apr-May 2019 'It's only when I rest that I sense your presence', installation, HKS, Bergen

 

Apr-May 2019 It's only when I rest that I sense your presence, text work, HKS, Bergen

________________________________________________________________________

 

July 2018 'In silence', performance, Berlin. Audio realisation of performance and photo documentation

________________________________________________________________________

 

Nov 2018 A Foreign Body: Absence, a denial of presence. Transplanting a Sitka spruce tree. Tælavåg. Video work

________________________________________________________________________

 

Feb 2019 'Foreign Bodies, Empty Rooms', Bergen Natural History Museum. Audio-visual realisation of performance

 

Aug - Oct 2019 'The Wrong Bodies', installation, Bergen Natural History Museum

 

Aug - Oct 2019 'The Wrong Bodies', text work, Bergen Natural History Museum

 

Oct 2019 The Museum's Wrong Bodies, presentation at Bergen Natural History Museum

________________________________________________________________________

 

July 2019 'Between our words, I will trace your presence' (1st iteration) performed at Cracking the Established order

 

Oct 2019 Between our Words... (2nd iteration), performed in UN Buffer Zone, Nicosia, Cyprus

 

Feb 2020 'Between our words, I will trace your presence' (3rd iteration) performance at Borealis Festival. Audio documentation

________________________________________________________________________

 

Feb - Mar 2020 abortive (pre-Covid) plans for final artistic result at Bergen Natural History Museum.

 

May 2020 Lecture on revised work in progress toward final artistic result, to staff and students at KMD

 

October 2020 Artist's book, The Wrong Bodies, based on work on the body and institutional silence, at Bergen Natural History Museum

________________________________________________________________________

 

Artistic Result

 

Reflection