John Powell-Jones talks about the residency
Personally the stand out experience of being part of The Conversation Series has been one of sharing. From the methods and techniques behind the making of our individual practices to the eclectic mix of influences that inspire them. From latex soaked foam to vintage game show opening credits, stop motion puppetry to 3D rendered animation.
As well as technical insight, having a regular space for conversation and support has been incredibly beneficial, being able to discuss and develop ideas with five other artists has provided the space for some really interesting ideas and development of work.
As well as providing the platform to enable this system of sharing the residency as also the given the freedom of space and time to gain a greater understanding about the complexity that terminology like ‘outsider’ has (and the apparent need that we, as a society, have to label people in such a way) from a wealth of different sources has been an invaluable experience.
Early on in the residency we took part in a trip to The Whitworth to look at selected pieces from the Musgrave Kinley Outsider Art Collection and take part in a discussion about the history and potential problematic nature of labelling an artist their work as ‘outsider’.
Having the opportunity to learn about the Musgrave Kinley collection and see pieces up close has provided a wealth of inspiration, learning about the various processes undertaken by the collected artists, specifically Judith Scott, has been particularly inspiring.
Having this focus point early on in the process provided a catalyst for continual conversation and consideration surrounding this topic, one of these that has particularly resonated with me is the western fascination or fetishisation of ‘the other’, and our continual need to label that which we distinguish as different, this is currently the basis for the work I have been producing.
I’m excited about where the project will go next!