I'll be spending 12 hours across the month of June developing a new work as a poet in residence at the Adelaide City Library (just off Rundle Mall) supported by Spoken Word SA.
For a bit of background, this is what I pitched in my application:
Mind the Garden: a whispered poetry performance and installation for one audience member at a time exploring the mind as something we can all grow.
The things we whisper
The things we don’t
The things we share
The things we won’t
A song of gardens
A whir of dreams
A hello smiled
Our unwritten seams
This project has been directly inspired by the idea of a library as a space of growth and community. Exploring and celebrating the tension of shared space in public libraries – the ways we come together and also remain separate. The way libraries and what we do in them stretch who we are and who we could become. My plan is to create a series of micro poems designed to be performed as whispers for one audience member at a time within an installation space which is a garden made of paper (which general public can help create). The residency will be a place to begin developing this concept in collaboration with City Library users and to present a live work in progress as the culmination of the residency.
Through this project as a residency at City Library I am interested in exploring/testing three things:
- Intimate performance. Recently in my other work I've been exploring performance work for audiences of fewer than 10 people at a time and this one on one exploration is an extension of that.
- Micro poetry. Specifically I am interested in how individual micro poems can come together as a series and create a bigger whole altogether.
- General public/audience engagement mechanisms. What works/what doesn't work in a library context. How to make people feel safe to contribute and give them opportunity and permission to see themselves as artmakers/integral to the outcome.
- Work in progress performance of Mind the Garden (working title), including paper garden installation elements.
- Collection of #tinytwitterpoem (s)
- Blog posts documenting the project
Already in between applying and the residency starting, some of my original thinking has shifted and I expect the residency process will shift and challenge the original concept even more. Patreon supporters will be able to follow along with all the ups and downs here and I will also do some more 'curated' public blogs over at Creating Art in the Desert (http://alyshaherrmann.wordpress.com).
Stay tuned for exact details of when I'll be in residence and how you can contribute and participate.
Photo Credit: Nic Tubb 2015, Another Elusive Maybe promo.