We feel a growing distance between people. Intimacy is often directly associated with physical proximity, touch and closeness. Currently, that’s not safe to practice outside of your household. Many people have found themselves isolated from partners, family and close friends.
Unclear guidance from the government, inaccessible information and general insecurities surrounding the pandemic has developed a distrust in communities, along with a huge sense of grief. It’s important but really difficult to feel held. It’s unavoidably lonely.
Within capitalism which is set to pit us against each other and surrounded by fascism, it makes sense to harness compassion, make space to listen and contemplate. We are striving to exist the best way we know-how. Being an artist has never felt more precarious yet art has become more essential for audiences in lockdown through films, books and personal craft activities.
We know artists are best placed to play with those technologies along with other new and exciting ways of connecting with audiences and participants.
Technologies such as Zoom, Houseparty and several other media are currently vital for social interaction and people are investing time in understanding and using them. They are often treated as a replacement for the social interactions we were used to but they are not. Not even close. We want to create a range of works that probe and explore intimacy, and how new or alternative forms of intimacy can be created.
Chasm is a co-commission between CLAY (Centre for Live Art Yorkshire) and East Street Arts
CLAY is a centre for artworks that test boundaries and artists whose practice is hard to define. We support risk, experimentation and interdisciplinary artwork. We do this by presenting work, supporting artists with affordable space, development opportunities and specialist platforms for live work. We are a radically inclusive space meaning, where possible, we work with individuals in a bespoke way to ensure their access to working with us.
About East Street Arts
East Street Arts is a creative social enterprise and charity. Its primary purpose as an arts organisation is rooted in the urgent need to ensure better livelihoods for artists and neighbours. Our work can be seen on buildings, the high street and in neighbourhoods. We support between 1000-1200 artists nationally per year. This can be through commissioning, residencies, studio provision, research, advocacy, housing and programming within the public-realm.
Whilst the day to day management of this commission will lie with CLAY, East Street Arts will play an active role in the recruitment and ongoing development of CHASM. This will include providing the commissioned artists with the following:
- A designated contact at East Street Arts, who will support you through the process in conjunction with Clay, and can facilitate your connection to East Street Arts.
- Access to a wide network of artists within the 1200 artists East Street supports annually.
- Opportunities to engage and collaborate with East Streets current artistic programme, including our Associate Artists and Virtual Studios.
- Access to a wide range of artistic support, both towards your commission and your wider development as an artist from both organisations
- A bespoke framework for the ‘remote residency’ or making process facilitated by CLAY with advice form East Street Arts
- Access to CLAY’s team as an outside eye on the work or for one to ones of checkpoints for your process
- Consultations on documenting the process and product
The works must be for a remote audience of up to 6 people/ a household.
- Response to themes of liveness. How will the piece use liveness in a remote way keeping the piece safe, in terms of being anti-viral as well as considering the ethics of audience participation? What creative approaches to form and content considering the challenges of presenting work remotely.
- Response to the provocation of intimacy. Is the piece thematically responding as well as in terms of form?
- Consideration of Documentation. How will the artist document? Could the process be documented? Will the performance lend itself to reperformance or is it possible to show the documentation as a performance to camera?
We’re particularly interested in seeing applications which
- Centre Black Voices
- frame People of Colour with compassion rather than trauma
- Creatively approach using video conferencing
- Creatively approach form by way of eliminating video conferencing
- Engage an intergenerational audience (e.g. a family household)
- Engage the audience in participation
- Engage audiences from Yorkshire