Workshop with Kathryn Elkin: once more, with feeling…

Part of Learning

8 August 2020


Kathryn Elkin, Queen, 2019.

Join artist Kathryn Elkin for an experimental workshop that will explore some of the processes and ideas within her recent work Queen (2019), focusing on the methods used to produce the speech narrative’ within it. The workshop will take place online (on Zoom) and has been devised for this particular context.

I want to situate this workshop around the idea of the live’ with regards to speaking and how we, as an audience, place value on what we imagine to be spontaneous speech. I am especially interested in the fascination with gleaning unrehearsed speech within the performative structure of the interview.

We have the idea that there is a truth to a person that might be revealed when they enter into unchartered speech acts; when they have spoken something for the first time. We have the idea we have an ear for truth. Or maybe our hope is that the subject will enter some sort of flow-state of speech that grants us an access beyond their control. If the speech is premeditated, maybe we can glean something from physical communication of the subject that is spontaneous – blushing, fidgeting. It is the violence within that desire for access that I keep coming back to as an energy to generate work.’

-Kathryn Elkin

Elkin’s performance and video works concern roleplay, humour and improvisation. She has an ongoing interest in shared cultural memory (as produced by popular music, television and cinema) and the melding of this information to biography. The tyranny of the performance of self’ and the crisis of the performing body are mainstays within her practice.

The workshop will include group experiments with melodic speech and a collective transcription of a short artist’s interview. Participants do not need to have experience of transcribing or any musical ability to take part!

Participants will be sent a link to view Queen (2019) in advance of the workshop and are encouraged to read an essay about the work by art historian and writer Amy Charlesworth that is available online here.

Kathryn Elkin

(b. 1983) was a participant in Artists and Archives: Artists’ Moving Image at the BBC in 2014 and presented Television, a solo exhibition at CCA, Glasgow, in 2016. She has shown work throughout the UK including: ICA, London; Tate Modern, London; Collective, Edinburgh; Transmission, Glasgow; S1, Sheffield and CCA Derry. She has screened works at: London Film Festival; Union Docs, New York; Courtisane Festival, Ghent and at Punto de Vista festival, Nevarra, where she received a special jury mention for the work Queen in 2020. She was the recipient of the 2017 Warwick Stafford Fellowship at Northumbria University.

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