Monday, 22 September 2008

The Open Dialogues Associate Blog Commissions

Image: Open Dialogues

We are pleased to announce a programme of associate commissions for the Open Dialogues blog.

The Open Dialogues Blog is where Open Dialogues post reviews, essays and interviews relating to the practice of critical writing and contemporary live art. The blog also hosts announcements on Open Dialogues’ projects as well as news items from the world of live, collaborative, body based and new media work. Providing quality editorial content on live art, the Open Dialogues blog has a growing readership which includes live art commissioning organisations, artists, writers and producers in the UK and internationally.

The Open Dialogues Associate commission is a curated programme that invites new and existing writers to publish on the Open Dialogues blog. There will be approximately 8 Associate texts a year, commissioned from the existing Open Dialogues network including UK and international writers, producers, curators and artists. These texts will be in addition to the regular live art related news, announcements and critical writing currently posted by Open Dialogues.

The Associate commissions will focus specifically on contemporary time-based, new media and live work from emerging artists or artistic scenes, that are not already documented in text. It will also feature subjects or themes not previously written into contemporary debates on live art.

The inaugural Associate commission is by the vacuum cleaner collective, co-founder of the Laboratory of Insurrectionary Imagination and founder of the very cooperative. The vacuum cleaner will be writing about their involvement at BLACKMARKET FOR USEFUL KNOWLEDGE AND NON- KNOWLEDGE No.11: ON WASTE at Liverpool’s Bluecoat Art Centre. The text will be forthcoming on the Open Dialogues blog in January 09.

Profiling new writers and the best in live art from the UK and internationally, the Open Dialogues blog is a comprehensive online location for quality critical writing on live art.

Monday, 15 September 2008

Limoncello - 'Confessions of a Critical Writer' - 29 September

Image: Open Dialogues

'Confessions of a Critical Writer' is a talk by Rachel Lois Clapham
and Mary Paterson as part of the Limoncello Punctuation Programme 29
September 7pm.

Limoncello's punctuation programme is a series of lectures,performances and events held between gallery exhibitions. The programme offers the gallery artists and the people around them a site to try out ideas. If as JG Ballard has claimed, short stories are the loose change of the literary world, then the punctuation programme events are 'looking after the pennies', although in a non-fiscal way as they are non-commercially viable work within a commercial context.

Open Dialogues works on the premise that artists and people who write about art belong to the same social and professional networks, share the same interests and have common goals. Acknowledging this context,Open Dialogues asks how critical writing can develop as a practice today. How can writers be critical?

For this talk, Open Dialogues will discuss a research focus concerning a new model of critical writing by using personal experiences or 'confessions' as case studies.

This event is a follow-up to Mary Paterson, Rachel Lois Clapham and Rebecca May Marston’s ‘Writing Live’ programme during Performa 07, which was kindly supported by Arts Council England.

For more details see

Monday, 8 September 2008

New Writing Collective Yorkshire

Charlotte Morgan and Joanna Loveday were recently in Berlin participating in Open Dialogues: New Life Berlin at the New Life Berlin Festival. Since returning they have initiated the New Writing Collective Yorkshire in response to a lack of accessible critical writing on contemporary new media and live work in the Yorkshire region and the perceived need for improved performance writer networks in their area.


Yorkshire based regional writers for contemporary art and performance, Joanna Loveday and Charlotte Morgan, would like to invite fellow regional critical writers to join them at the first meeting of a 'new writing collective'. If you are a writer of art/theatre columns, reviews, essays or cultural commentator on performance, film, new media, installations, Live Art and contemporary exhibitions then we want to hear from you! This is the first of hopefully many meetings, where the collective can share information, offer writing support and potentially offer a space for publication.

Through opening up this new dialogue, the collective hopes to build new connections throughout the region between writers, share local knowledge of the contemporary art and performance regional programming, and become a strong collective who can encourage new writing and new networking opportunities across the regions.

First Meeting: Wednesday 10th September, Reliance Bar, Leeds 8pm

Aims of the meeting:
• Introductions - getting to know fellow writers, sharing brief biogs

• Yorkshire Focus - looking at the region, covering the geographical areas and homelands of the writers present. Sharing knowledge of current curators, venues and artistic programmes and whether they are reviewed or written about at present.

• Publications -discussion of all known regional (and if appropriate national) publications, including zines, journals, newspapers, websites and newsletters.

This will be an informal meeting over drinks, starting at 8pm in Reliance bar Leeds, and is a great opportunity to meet new people with a shared interest, talk, have fun and hopefully build something new together. For more information on how to find Reliance see their website:

For more information about the New Writing Collective Yorkshire, please email Joanna at: If you would like to add a topic to the agenda for discussion or talk to us beforehand, please do email.

We welcome all writers, curators, artists, editors and programmers to this first meeting, if you have an interest in new writing, we hope to see you there!

Friday, 5 September 2008

Critical Communities

Image, courtesy Writing Encounters, York.

Writing Encounters (York St John University 11-14 Sept) is an international symposium curated by Claire Hind and Claire MacDonald, for writing artists, researchers, curators, producers and teachers who have an interest in the encounter between art, writing and performance, as well as the way in which writing's forms are currently changing in response to new technologies and social networks. The conference line up includes artists Barbara Campbell (1001 nights) and Lone Twin, Material (Simon Morris and Nick Thurston), Maria Fusco (Director, MFA Art Writing Goldsmiths College), Open Dialogues as well as many others involved in the related fields of performance and writing. More details can be found at the conference website

At Writing Encounters Open Dialogues and New Work Network will host 'Critical Communities' a roundtable discussion for all delegates that asks; what kind of encounters do artists and writers have? What relationships do existing structures enable writers and artists to have? What is produced in these encounters? How can such critical relationships be safeguarded within artistic communities?

If you are planning to attend the Writing Encounters conference, we hope you will make a contribution to Critical Communities in person. Let us know in advance if you are attending then we can shape the event accordingly.

There is also the opportunity for you to engage in the debate before, during and after the conference via the New Work Network online forum. Whether you are an artist, writer, critic, curator or publisher ‘Critical Communities’is the place to contribute your thoughts, responses and personal experiences about your relationship to critical writing. What is at stake when critical writing takes new work as its subject and object? What do you think happens or is produced when new work artists and writers come together? How can the related act of making new work and writing about it be re-configured? Can we - artists and writers of new work - change the way we work together?

We look forward to your contributions, either online or in York- or both.

Writing Encounters Conference website

Critical Communities online forum

Open Dialogues