I hope the following might provide some distraction while my beloved country tears itself apart. At present I’m for embracing cosmic anarchy and seeking solace in the transcendent: the only territory impervious to toxic political manoeuvring!
Anyway, plenty of news: Hawthonn’s first interview was published in The Quietus. We must thank Russell Cuzner for concisely editing what was quite a long and far-ranging conversation.
… of course, this was coincident with the release of our second album, Sea-Spiral Spirit, on Reverb Worship. The physical edition is now sold out (although there will hopefully be second edition), although the digital edition is still available and includes a 15-minute bonus track.
Please also enjoy these two videos, by our friend AEtheric Anomalies: the first, Pan Laws, was inspired by Jhonn Balance’s enthusiasm for ‘PAN things’ in his final published interview. It’s NSFW, but perhaps you can also spot veiled Coil references…
Also, you can see and hear the first Hawthonn album at Ceven Knowles’ Chaostrophy exhibition, which is the inaugural exhibition at Ludwig, a new gallery/performance space/bar in Berlin. There are some great visual and video works on display – the exhibition runs until 23rd July, so drop in if you are around!
Closer to home, Layla and I have score extracts and photos from Angelystor on display at Bank Street Arts in Sheffield, until the 1st of July. This is part of the Fresh Yorkshire Aires exhibition, organised by LCM tutor and composer Jacob Thompson-Bell, to celebrate graphic scores in Yorkshire.
Finally, I read a new paper at Creatiity: A Multi-Dimensional Approach, a symposium at Leeds Beckett University organised by psychologist Dr. Anna Abraham and the Cognition & Behaviour Programme of the Centre for Applied Social Research (CeASR). My talk looked at the imaginative, cognitive and creative process of visionary artist Cecil Collins. I’m holding off posting it, since I think it’s almost ready for a journal submission, but please contact me if you wish to read the draft. The abstract is below:
For the poets and painters in what Kathleen Raine identified as the ‘traditional’ school of artistry, the imagination was considered as the prime organ of cognition. It was not the domain of ‘fancy’, nor was it simply a faculty ‘that which allows us to visualise and solve problems’, rather it possessed the ability to apprehend a ‘symbolic’ reality: here, images of real things, also convey deeper spiritual or ‘poetic’ truths, which become the foundation of creative discourse. This paper outlines a history of the poetic imagination, from the ‘cognitive theology’ of Augustine, to Cecil Collins’ ‘theatre of imagination’, and considers how insights from a number of disciplines, including the cognitive science of religion (CSR), may help us explore the continuing significance of the ‘symbolic event’ in contemporary creative practice.