During the year I spent time developing work surrounding mythological, scientific and folkloric understandings of the sea. Margate and the surrounding coastal area’s rich and strange relationship to the water has become entangled with my previous work around ecologies, queerness and deep time.
For the final show I presented an installation called ‘The Sound is Doing Something Different Now’ which drew on research about sub-aquatic noise pollution and the Shoeburyness military testing site to develop a science fiction narrative in which sound pollution is mutating the biosphere in Thanet. The installation included field recordings from the Thames Estuary, a text abstract, a sculptural thing reminiscent of the dolphin lamp posts seen around Margate Harbour, and some sort of mutational slime. An extract of the audio portion of the project can be heard here.
I co-organised the ‘Ecologies’ series of the Public Programme and invited the artist Linda Stupart to run a workshop in which we read, talked and swam as a way to travel through time, think through trauma and environmental crisis.
One of the most rewarding projects that I took part in this year was the filmmaking course led by fellow Associate Jemma Cullen. The course was specifically tailored to adult learners from the GOLD Group at East Kent Mencap and learners of the Margate Adult Education Centre, and was facilitated by a number of Associates. I assisted in running workshops throughout the course and facilitated the two sessions towards the end of the project in which the film was shot. I also edited the film and helped with the magnificent Oscars-style awards ceremony and screening event at Dreamland. I also ran two workshops on art manifestos and zine making with the Young Associates, and helped facilitate sessions with the Despacito Art School.
Separate from OSE, this year a collaborative project that I am part of called the Multi Species Research Group launched their first publication in which I contributed one text that was mostly about whales (and also about alcoholism), and another text about walking a dog. I edited and produced the publication that featured 20 artists, writers and academics and also organised the launch event in which a number of wonderful humans and other animals performed readings, dances, music and microscopic visuals.
Margate and the communities that exist in it, of which OSE is part of, have had an incredible effect on me and my work and I look forward to future collaborations and schemes with people I have met over this past year.