Issue 46 August 2012
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Issue 46 August 2012
you are listening to Hurt Love by NO CEREMONY///
cover art By Kev Munday
Submit Every month we showcase writers, artists and musicians who deserve to share their work with the wider arts community and the public as a whole. blankpages is about supporting all artists, not just writers. If your work crosses genres, that’s fine with us. We’re looking for talented creatives with a unique style and ability to produce interesting pieces. New works are preferred, but previously published pieces will be considered. For further information on the submissions guidelines, CLICK HERE
CONTENT Get in touch / Welcome
Blankverse - Jen Ruth Bailey
Fiction - Martin Lindley
Spotlight - Kev Munday
This month’s mp3 - NO CEREMONY///
Feature - NODE
Blankpicks - There’s Lead In My Pencil
Blank Media recommends
S TR EET A RT
welcome Blank Media Collective welcomes in the summer with a brand new project and exciting host of plans for more. It’s been a very busy few weeks and the Blank Media team have been charging all over the place finding paint, artists, pipes and good places to hide TV screens in Manchester’s favourite watering holes. The BMC projector series launched on 26th July, forging creative links between artists and venues across the city. August and September promise a succession of projector delights including a collaboration at Sandbar with Video Jam and a bound-to-be-mental intervention by installation artist Greg Thomas. We’ve got a fantastic issue to stuff your eyes and ears with; new writing, music, art, crafts and more. (Physical stuffing is not recommended – other gestures of devotion are welcome).
Hannah Hiett Comms I ntern
Jen Ruth Bailey How to say “I love you” in a World of Technological I ndifference Clutch an old mobile phone. (Not one of those smartphones the ones that can access the Internet. The ones you forget why you went on it in the first place.) Trace the keypad with your hand - unyielding plastic Braille Feel the cold hardness under your fingertips. Press:
Menu > SMS > Create Message
The blank white window: word limit in the corner, glare of the screen on the back of the retinas. Writers’ block - stops you. Texts are ephemeral; leaves in the breeze.
What can you convey in 160 characters when the time-old cliché “I love you” loses meaning in the zeros and ones? Bound up in binary and predictive text. Predicting, like an astrologist, that the moon will be in Saturn (and please respond ASAP). By the way, you still haven’t typed anything. Your hand hovers above the keypad, thumbprint on keys: a swirl of whorls upon plastic rubbing the nub of the buttons. That old English reserve renders you helpless, surrendering letters, words, sentences. All you write is: “Call me?”
Illustrations by Michael Thorp
Olympian Curled like a comma, on the starting line, ready to spring. A numismatic: measuring worth in glittering prizes. Awards, rewards for physical prowess, No one could guess the fitness regime. The cackle of static: the blue mat, rubber against flesh, hard press of knee between thighs. Soft film of salt above wet lips, greyhound fit. The four year wait is over Five rings symbolise a complex triple beat of: faster. Higher. Stronger. The grit of medal between the teeth, does not break the gold plate. The metal burns with the sunâ€™s heat.
Jen Ruth Bailey is a writer and educator living in Greater Manchester. She has had poetry published in The Nail, The Best of Manchester Poets: volume 1 (Puppywolf 2010) and Electric Sky (Bad Language, 2011). She has also performed poetry at Manchester Pride, Manchester Comedy Festival, the London Vegan Festival, and was a finalist at the 2008 Hammer & Tongue slam poetry competition. Jen is currently working with storyteller David England, compiling stories from Lancashire. Lancashire Folk Tales will be published by History Press in 2014. For further information about Jen, have a gander at her website: jenbee.me.uk
Martin Lindley Cafe Vermilion. A gentle yet persistent rain is visible from the inside of the café through the bay window which I am sat by. This rain is occupying itself with a tireless and care free haranguing of the pavement; an on-going debate regarding the right to existence in which the pavement’s position is relatively solid but will no doubt erode, in a matter of time, due to the conviction in, and persistence of, the rain’s argument. I would have been able to distract myself with this elemental polemic for a little while longer if I hadn’t suddenly been more captivated by you stepping through the door. I haven’t seen you in years. The door closes, ringing a little bell as it does so. I notice that your long blonde hair, with its slight curls at the ends, is completely rainless and that this is evidently due to your deft usage of the long blue umbrella which you now promptly, yet elegantly, dry off and place neatly into the stand by the door.
I quickly hide behind today’s Independent, which was on the table in front of me. I’m sheltered enough to engage in a debate, this time between heart and mind, without you necessarily having to be aware of the outcome; my brain informs me that my unique position, at the table in the alcove by the door, has conveniently allowed me to see you without you seeing me, and that what this means is that when you head to the bar I can make a hasty and clandestine escape; but my heart counters with a feeling like it is made of a tissue being stretched across two posts, one static and in this room, the other mobile and beginning to recede steadily into the distance. If the stretching continues then the strain on the tissue fibres will cause them, one by one, to tear. The only way to stop this laceration would be to bring the two poles back together.
Still hidden I glance to my left at the window, its glass panes are now covered with the blurring fog of condensation. You start to glide towards the bar. If I’m going to leave without being noticed now is probably my best chance; I put the paper down on the table, get a real tissue out from my jacket pocket, lean to my side to wipe some condensation from the glass, pocket the tissue, peer outside at the rain for a moment, and then… then I slowly stand up. I glance towards you. Through the small crowd at the bar I’m just about able to make out the back of your head. If only I could see into it, read it, then this decision would be much easier. No. I’m making the assumption that I’d be able understand what’s inside - that we’d even speak the same inner language would be a minor miracle. I slip towards the door. I can hear the graining patter of rain on pavement; sometimes things break down, or erode, and that’s fine. There is more condensation on the window of the door, seemingly indicative of an unfocused, or nebulous outside world. Nonetheless it’s a world I’m used to. I grab the door handle and make the slight twist required to open it. I look back to you. The colours which surround you are so distinctly vibrant: red sofas, red brick walls, the neon sign above the bar, your hair. My hand goes limp on the door handle. I sigh; but my hand tenses again. However, as it tenses it is also raised into the air, fingers spread slightly apart. I turn to move away from the door. I’m about to call your name.
Blackpool Odyssey We’re there now, in Blackpool, parked behind the Sea Life Centre, by the north pier, on the long promenade which will lead us to the Pleasure Beach. I am nine. Walking with my family south, past the pier, there’s euphoria in the fresh seaside air. I see fantastic shops and markets which offer an infinite array of toys, sweets, and fun. Heading further south we pass the casino. Suddenly, I am seventeen. I’m here with my first girlfriend, Jane, walking down the promenade. All I see are the tacky shops, chippies, and street vendors who’re selling pornographic playing cards; one vendor breathing smoke into my face as he insists I buy a deck.
them a lot… Often after school I’d go to Jacob’s, which is a five or ten minute walk from mine, it seemed to shrink with age, and we’d imagine what having a girlfriend is like. Many popular boys had girlfriends. It must be amazing, we thought.
I am six. We’re in the car and on the unending journey from Wakefield to Blackpool.In the car, a red Vauxhall cavalier, me and my family, four boys and two parents, play games such as the classic ‘count the number of green cars’. I’m sure Dad is the instigator of all this…anything to stop four boys from getting restless… was this the first time we came to Blackpool?
I’m twenty three and I’m in my room writing. Jacob is married and teaching English in Korea. I don’t see him anymore. I’ve had a string of failed relationships, but I’m currently dating a PHD Student; I’m quite in love with her, yet it’s probably too early to reveal my feelings. We often talk about Derrida and post-structuralism; she’s involved in body politics. I’m stuck into class… gazing at the screen of my laptop; I’m trying to understand why or how I got here.
I am fifteen. We finally reach Blackpool Pleasure Beach. I’m with my best friend Jacob. We’ve hit that age where our interest in girls dominates the conversation; neither of us has ever had a girlfriend so, naturally, we talk about
Now twenty two; I’m at home looking at a photo from the 70’s which has faded and drained, fashionably, to sepia. It’s my Dad and his brother, also in their 20’s, arms around one another, smiling. There’s not much I’ll ever be able to know about this photograph, aside from it being taken outside Blackpool tower.
Six once again! Me and Dad at the front of the long queue for Space Invader 2. The ride itself is two things. From
the one angle itâ€™s a thirty something year old man and his lad, moving a jagged plastic cartridge, on a rail, in a dark room with some fairy lights. From another itâ€™s beautiful; Dad, though not being keen on rides, has joined me because I wasnâ€™t tall enough to go alone. The ride is spectacular: stars emit the only visible light as me and Dad whizz through space.
Martin Lindley is a Manchester based writer who tries to write about the things and feelings which matter; it would help if he knew which do. You can find more of his work at towardsgoodandevil.wordpress.com
Birds on the wire
Birds on the wire
Kev Munday has been expressing himself visually on all surfaces within reach from an early age. He states that his goal as an artist is to ‘show his work to as many sets of eyes as possible’. Having exhibited his art in shows across 5 continents, he has gone a long way towards achieving this. Kev’s creations have featured in dozens of publications including The Independent, Front, The Evening Standard, Vice and Knowledge Magazine. His painting skills have earned him commissions from clients including Walt Disney, Fabric Nightclub, Monster Energy Drink and Guitar Hero. Just as comfortable producing his visions on huge walls as on paper, Kev has created many large scale murals and relishes the opportunity to work in the public domain. Choosing to represent himself rather than deal exclusively through an agent, Kev self publishes a new collection of limited edition prints every year and ships them worldwide, directly from his studio. When not in the studio working on new pieces, Kev is regularly exhibiting and live painting at events all over the world.
For further information about Kev Munday and his work, follow the link below: kevmunday.co.uk
23 of my friends
this month’s mp3
NO CEREMONY/// Words by Anne Louise Kershaw
It has almost become a cliché for a band to be an internet sensation months before they even play their first gig. But seeing as though so much of our lives are lived through this virtual reality it seems that rather than being a revolutionary way to launch yourself, it is now par for the course. We are so familiar with its processes that we can expand and grow as organically online as in real life, because it is real life; as real life as matters. This is no more the case than for Manchester based band NO CEREMONY///. They say their name is “an extension of our attitude to making music in general, attaching no real significance to anything that feels superfluous to making our music and communicating what we want to communicate.” Interestingly their name (the forward slashes are not a typo) emphasise their existence in the virtual world; the full name can be seen if not tangibly read aloud. As with fellow musical collaborators Alt-J (the
keyboard command for the ∆ delta symbol) and numerous other newly emerging bands, the digital world is intrinsic to their very being. They breathe pixels and knock out a beat in HTML.
This not only expands their creative platform, but brings with it something we regularly slate about the internet; the opportunity for anonymity and the ability of unaffected growth that brings. Google-image (yes this is a verb) Alt-J and you will see a host of images (not all, but plenty) where the band member’s faces are intentionally obscured. NO CEREMONY/// have taken this one pixel further. Googleimage them and you are presented with a smorgasboard of visuals akin to a pintrest board created by Metallica’s James Hetfield while high on fibre-optic absinth. Initially these visuals seem incongruous to their hauntingly uplifting sound. Think hoards of children in gas masks or
films showing drug addicts at their lowest ebb. In every instance however, NO CEREMONY/// affect the aesthetic with a wash of colour, a bold use of light that adds beauty and calm to a seemingly disturbing scene. Upon reflection, it is exactly that juxtaposition that also makes their music both unsettlingly moving and perfectly well balanced. It teeters on a knife-edge between light and dark, holding you always in suspension between both these poles. They see this visual element, as explored through their website and further through their videos, very much as ‘an extension of [the music]. We have the tools and skills to be able to create our art across several different mediums, and we take full advantage of that. Every creative element
“It teeters on a knife-edge between light and dark, holding you always in suspension between both these poles.” of NO CEREMONY/// comes from the strong identity we have internally, from the music through to the art and videos.’ At no point are the band members physically a part of this aesthetic, although they are creatively entwined in its digital core. Having interviewed NO CEREMONY/// I feel
this is less a case of hidden identity, but rather controlled and creative exposure. Until their highly anticipated debut show, as part of the Future Everything festival in May, no-one even knew what or who NO CEREMONY/// were; even the link on their PR agency’s site lead to a blank page. Despite this, for months in advance, muso-blogs were awash with excitable identity suggestions and their freely downloadable tracks were sharing like electrical wildfire.The lack of knowledge regarding their identity was less than irrelevant; it was interestingly refreshing. Following on from the debut show revelation that NO CEREMONY/// are two unknown men and a woman, their identity continues to be of Z-list interest compared to the A-list importance of their music. Equally, when I interviewed them, (by email naturally and not face-to-face) I do not know which of the tightly-knitted three actually replied.This doesn’t matter one neon jot and in fact serves to enhance my interest in their music, and question my interest in their identity. As they explained “a lot of the information people ask for, they don’t really want to know, they’re just accustomed to knowing it.” NO CEREMONY/// have made sure you know very little about them apart from the music they make. The first track I heard of theirs was HURTLOVE. I’ve no idea how this crept into my psyche but once it did, it didn’t leave. It opens with a straight piano riff that echoes out from what sounds like a sound-check for an early-90’s
warehouse party. It unfolds into deliciously delicate synthdriven electronica that hypnotically has you hooked. The vocals are at some points vaguely female, at others vaguely male. They are always, however, spoken with an ultra-processed timbre that, far from being un-human, offer a universality that absolutely anyone can dive in to. The opening line “love the way you caught me deep inside” sounds as though it is whispered by the hybrid love-child of Cyndi Lauper and Sonny the robot from iRobot. Its unique blend of digitally enhanced androgyny is surprisingly moving. Amidst a musical landscape swamped with talent-show divadom, this lack of media-enthused ‘soul’ is deliciously and openly emotive. Someone has commented on the YouTube video asking “Why the fuck am I crying?”. Another says “I often find myself searching for songs with a certain sound. I don’t know what the type of music might be called, or what artists might make it, or how to even begin to go about looking for it . I just know it has to be out there somewhere... this is one of those songs.” NO CEREMONY/// certainly have that knack. You do not know where they came from or who they are then suddenly their songs seem to be sound-tracking your innermost secrets. Since the release of HURTLOVE in February, NO CEREMONY///, very much like their music, have sustained a steady momentum. More than an album’s worth of tracks
– both sole productions and remixes – have now been released, each maintaining and extending their delightful blend of shoe-gaze electronica. I have to clarify here, by release I mean a free download and a new video. As of yet, NO CEREMONY/// have given all their music away at no charge. This was something that happened naturally for them and “wasn’t really a conscious or agonized-over decision. We wrote some music, were happy with it, and wanted people to hear it. So we built a website, made a video, and gave it away for free.We told some people who told some people, and thousands of people downloaded the track and loved it. So we did it again.” It is a benefit to our emo-electronica-needy ears that they did. Follow-up tracks such as the heavily-electrically charged HEARTBREAKER further demonstrated their ability to break out of pre-defined boxes. HEARTBREAKER is considerably more upbeat than HURTLOVE. It has a reliably pounding base upon which is layered haunting droning uber-processed lyrics alongside an interestingly over-driven guitar line played by The Pixie’s guitarist Joey Santiago. Just as you think you have them pigeon-holed, NO CEREMONY/// bring something into the mix that changes your mind. “As a band, we’re very intrinsic looking with our music. Internally, the band has an incredibly strong identity of what does and does not constitute NO CEREMONY///, and we draw from that belief regularly. Of course, it would be ridiculous to say that we’re not influenced every day
in hundreds of different ways by hundreds of different things, but it would be hard to pinpoint any specific thing that directly influences the music we make.” This goes to explain why, despite the muso-press’s penchant for making comparisons, NO CEREMONY/// are difficult to pin a genre to. This is further extended by their interesting array of remixes. Equally genre-busting Alt-J, Indie-poppers Zulu Winter, and Patrick Wolf amongst others have all received the NO CEREMONY/// treatment, each with surprising and equal success. Collaboration is something that NO CEREMONY/// creatively benefit from: “We are always open and willing to collaboration, as can be seen from our recent track with Stay+, the numerous remixes we’ve done and having Joey Santiago play guitar on HEARTBREAKER.
“Internally, the band has an incredibly strong identit y of what does and does not constit ute NO CEREMONY///, and we draw from that belief regularly.”
Just as we don’t feel it’s important for people to know who we are, we don’t feel it’s important exactly who the people we collaborate with are. The only thing we look for is that they understand us and what we’re trying to achieve, and that we understand them and what they’re trying to achieve.” As well as remixing an eclectic variety of bands, and giving all their tracks so far away for free, NO CEREMONY/// offer their music for equal treatment:“Once we’ve written the song, according to the way we see it, we’re excited to give people all the working parts and see how they would have done it differently. It all ties in to identity. We know how we want the track to sound, but that doesn’t mean it has to sound like that to everyone, and if they want to rework it, then that’s great.” Such creative confidence offers infinite artistic possibility: “It’s always great to hear your music through other people’s ears. Just because we have a strong idea of what the band is, doesn’t mean that we hold any form of unnecessary protectiveness or ownership over it. As I say, as long as our collaborators understand us and we understand them, there’s nothing that’s creatively off limits.” The emphasis on creative freedom, and removal of promotion-orientated distraction, very much seems to be the NO CEREMONY/// ethic. They say they “all came together over an incredibly strong artistic bond and mutual understanding of what we wanted to achieve.”
The further you move away from their physical to their musical identity, the closer you come to realising and thoroughly enjoying what it is NO CEREMONY/// want to achieve. “Press releases and press shots seemed like an unnecessary distraction from focusing on our sound and songs whilst we established ourselves.” By consciously removing these elements, all that remains is artistically focused; music, video, visual design.
“We know how we want the track to sound, but that doesn’t mean it has to sound like that to everyone, and if they want to rework it , then that’s great.” Their priority is always the music. They are currently working on their debut album, due out in 2013,and I look forward to hearing what they create and hearing exactly how creative freedom expands and affects their sound. Their current blend of surreal and split up electronics, ethereal vocals and both lightly acoustic and ruffed-up, distorted guitars is an aural delight. They are high-voltage raindrops falling into ultra-violet puddles. A comment
posted on their HEARTBREAKER video on YouTube offers one way to sum them up: “WHO ARE YOU!! and why is your music perfect!!!!” Perfect or not, no one can respond to this better than NO CEREMONY/// themselves: “NO CEREMONY/// is about the music. Everything else is irrelevant. We’re not actually secretive or mysterious, we don’t hide our faces when we play live, we have an email address to contact us on our website.” But paramount to this “We put our music to the forefront because we’re musicians, and our music is what should be talked about.”
NO CEREMONY/// are based in Manchester. They’ve released two singles, Hurtlove and Heartbreaker, both were XFM playlisted. Despite having only ever played live twice, they recently did a Radio 1 Maida Vale session. For further information about NO CEREMONY/// and their work, follow the link below: www.noceremony.com
NODE Words by Sarah Handyside
ecently, blankpages featured the quirky, whimsical work of Chris Haughton; designer, illustrator and children’s book author. We pored over the delicious colours and charming characters of his book ‘A Bit Lost’, and happily splashed the lead character, ‘Little Owl’, across our front cover. We also learnt a little about another of his projects, one that intrigued us enough to put it aside for a feature of its own. Its name is NODE, an inspiring fair trade endeavour not yet a year old but already far-reaching in its impact and ambition. The roots of NODE lie in Chris’s involvement with People Tree, the online purveyor of fair trade fashion. He worked for the group for over eight years as a freelance designer, fanning the flames of his passion for fair trade,
and eventually decided to take a trip to figure out how he could make it work better. “I took myself off travelling and went to Nepal. I initially meant to go for three months over the winter and ended up staying for eight,” he explains. During his trip Chris visited Kumbeshwar Technical School (KTS), which supports and trains lower caste women and men in literacy and other skills. The school provides care and education for 260 school pupils and runs an orphanage housing 19 children. They sustain themselves by selling hand-spun rugs and knitwear. Chris was fascinated, but perceived a flaw. “In Nepal the craft and the tools are just amazing. At KTS the women can support themselves through traditional craft and it’s fantastic. But any projects and commissions
they were getting were from community centres and church groups – can you weave our logo onto a rug, that kind of thing. The most amazing craft and they’re weaving tacky logos. I just thought ‘maybe I can design something that works better with them.” What Chris saw was the potential for a beautiful design project, one where the care and creativity of the designs could reflect the skill and intricacy of the craftspeople. One where design could give the project wings, and create an appeal for buyers further afield. He put together some designs, realising that the pixel makeup of the carpet making process was remarkably similar to that of the digital images central to his work as an illustrator. Unsure of what would happen next, he posted images of the completed rugs to his website. There, the power of word of mouth took over. “Quite a few designers and illustrators and people like that read my blog and follow me on Twitter, and they started asking questions about the rugs – could they send their own designs and get them made?” This was of course fantastic news for KTS but the interest quickly became unsustainable. Chris was immersed in work on his next book, and the hassle and cost of oneoff orders was significant. “It’s very difficult to pay the Nepalese because there’s no merchant banking system. And in Nepal itself you can’t get a credit card and you can’t buy anything online.
It’s all very complex,” he explains, wincing, it seems, at memories of the multiple hoops he tried to jump through. Fortunately, help was at hand in the shape of a Kathmandu-based friend, Akshay Sthapit. Akshay had set up Harilo, a website that functions like ‘Amazon for Nepal’. “He told me he could help me set up a web shop because he already does import/export in Nepal – he’s got an American and a Nepalese bank account. He’s built a way for Nepalese people to shop online.” With logistics fixed, the NODE method was able to grow organically. Chris and the Nepalese design team created a process for quickly turning digital images directly into carpet graphs. Bales of pure Tibetan wool are then hand-spun into thread, hand-dyed with natural and nonpolluting dyes, and hand-knotted on looms into carpet. The results are vivid and charming – and the potential scope is huge. NODE remains a small outfit – but then it’s a young one, still feeling its way through minefields of red tape and box ticking, publicity and sustainability. The passion behind it is tangible, and its message is a significant one. When asked how important he believes the role of art is in fair trade, Chris is firm. It is fundamental. “A rug isn’t like a banana or coffee – it doesn’t just grow. With manufacturing, you need high-end design. You need the input of art and that hasn’t really happened in a big
way yet, which is why we still end up with sweat shops and unfair manufacturing practices.” It’s an uncomfortable concept, and one that even those of us who consider ourselves to be ethical and worldaware are somewhat quick to ignore because we like our clothes to be pretty, our carpets not to clash – and we perhaps like to pretend that such concepts don’t affect our principles. A traditionally crafted coat from many worlds away might be appealing for a moment, but its novelty doesn’t always slide comfortably into our everyday.
“What Chris and NODE have achieved is to remind us – show us – that ethics and aesthetics do not have to be mutually exclusive,” What Chris and NODE have achieved is to remind us – show us – that ethics and aesthetics do not have to be mutually exclusive, that there are ways for artists, designers, craftspeople and consumers to work together across continents, creating pieces that are beautiful, functional and, crucially, desirable. Now, NODE’s website invites visitors to send their graphics or illustrations –
or even maps or low-res photos – and transform them into unique, personal and overwhelmingly positive decorations. It is not hard to envisage a future where designs for clothing work in the same way. The word node translates to ‘knot’ in Latin, and it also means ‘network’. It’s a subtle nod to the collaborative ambitions of the project, the inspiring ability of a handful of people to create something far bigger than themselves, something that creates a touching sense of unity and fairness without being cloying or preachy. Thanks to Chris Haughton and NODE, the marriage of art and fair trade is now firmly not swept under the rug. Chris and NODE are exhibiting at Tent London, 20-23 September, Old Truman Brewery, London E1.
For further information about NODE and their work, follow the links below: nodenepal.com peopletree.co.uk kumbeshwar.com harilo.com
Jessica Macdonald There’s Lead In My Penci l I write this blog because some things are worth writing about and because it’s important for most of us to remember how lucky we are. We’re lucky because we have permission to experience richness in our lives and the autonomy to decide what we think of the things we see and hear. Sometimes we’ll think something’s really funny and really sad, or unspeakably beautiful and weird, or vacuous and ugly. We might be beside ourselves with anger about something that’s too big to think about or understand fully. And sometimes, we won’t like ourselves at all and we’ll wreck everything by giving up playing our instruments or not learning our lines or not going to work. So, this blog is a mixture of these things and I write about them because I’m lucky enough to do so. And because, in the words of a very dear friend, I can’t just go around selling cellos. theresleadinmypencil.blogspot.co.uk
Adam Gilmour recommends:
Didn’tsbury didntsbury.tumblr.com I did in fact only recently happen across this intriguing and wonderfully sinister blog, which, using Didsburybased images as writing prompts, is home to some fascinating and often hilarious pieces of surrealist micro-fiction. I didn’t think it prudent to introduce Didn’tsbury in any other manner than in one which adheres to its very particular submission guidelines, and, although these at first might appear constrictive, they are certainly effective in performing their intended function; to encourage snappy, engaging pieces of writing which you’ll instantly find yourself addicted to.
LOST AND FOUND FESTIVAL Various locations, Manchester 26th – 28th September Back for a second year, Lost and Found is a collection of popup performances from new artists taking place across the city. Keep your eyes peeled for performances happening in busy and unexpected places such as on Metrolink trams and in Piccadilly Gardens. contactmcr.com/projects/festivals/lost-found SALFORD ZINE LIBRARY Nexus Art Café, Manchester Mon-Sat 10am-7pm, Sun 12-6pm Free Nexus Art Café is now proudly hosting Salford Zine Library, an impressive archive of local self-published work set up in 2010. The archive welcomes contributions and donations. salfordzinelibrary.blogspot.co.uk ONCE MORE WITH MEANING The Met, Bury 5th August, 7:30pm Entry £2/£1 conc Bury’s newest regular open mike poetry evening, this edition will feature readings from special guest poets Norman Warwick and Scott Devon. At the end of the evening, the audience vote for their favourite piece of work. The winning work is then published online. Tickets available on the door. themet.biz/strand/once+more+with+meaning
JAM NIGHT Salutation Hotel & Pub, Manchester Every Thursday, 8pm Free With a house band of highly talented RNCM players, this is a great chance for any budding musicians to come and test out their material before a live audience. The house band play a short set to start the evening off, before throwing the stage open for anyone to get involved. Over 18s only, all musical styles welcome. salutationmanchester.co.uk BABEL FICHE Castlefield Gallery, Manchester Preview 9 August, 6-8pm Exhibition runs 10-16 September Castlefield Gallery re-launches this summer with the ambitious Babel Fiche, the latest project from Manchester-based artist Dave Griffiths. Comprising of Deep Field [The Photographic Universe] and the film Babel Fiche, this exhibition of new work explores themes of fluctuation and transition in today’s socioeconomic climate, and the redundancy of older technologies in the face of an expanding digital culture. www.babelfiche.net
WHAT HAVE I DONE TO (DE)SERVE THIS? BLANKSPACE, Manchester Preview 29th August, 6pm-9pm 30th August – 16th September, 12pm-8pm Free Part of the Abandon Normal Devices festival of new visual art and cinema, this exhibition explores the effect the global financial crisis has had on the generation of artists living through it. Featuring: A Dream Came Through, a durational performance piece by Lanfranco Aceti looking at enslavement and liberation through minimum wage employment; Young Money, an installation by Jennifer Chan examining the structure of power and capitalism behind internet fetish communities; and also Monarchs and Men and The Anarchist Banker, film installation pieces by Jan Peter Hammer investigating old and modern concepts of greed; along with much more. andfestival.org.uk/events/what-have-i-done-to-deserve-this RELATIVE VALUES The Art Lounge, The Beehive Inn, New Mills Runs until 16th September Open Thursday – Sunday, 7pm-late Relative Values is the latest exhibition from The Art Lounge, a Derbyshire-based organisation which strives to provide emerging artists with a fee-free space to exhibit and sell their work. Stop by for a beer, a wine or a coffee, and peruse or even purchase the exciting contemporary work on offer! facebook.com/ArtLounge
TALES OF WHATEVER The Castle Hotel, Manchester Every 2nd Wednesday of the month, 7:45pm This popular venue in Manchester’s northern quarter plays host to Tales of Whatever, an evening of live autobiographical storytelling. The evening is open for anyone to take part in. Stories are delivered note-free and should last for around 10 minutes each. Drop an email outlining your idea to firstname.lastname@example.org to get involved. talesofwhatever.com HAVE A VERY NICE DAY King’s Arms, Salford Performances run nightly until 3rd August, 7:30pm Tickets £7/£5 conc OPOD Productions, a group dedicated to showcasing the work of emerging Salford playwrights, presents Have a Very Nice Day, the debut play by Barry Evans. Inspired by works such as 1984 and Terry Gilliam’s Brazil, this production mixes the mundane and the fantastic, all in the confines of a lonely telesales office. haveaveryniceday.webs.com
SOMETHING TO SHOUT ABOUT? To include your event or recommend someone else’s in a future issue just email us with your event title, location, date, time and a short description. Editor@blankmediacollective.org (max 100 words)
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