My work tends to focus on creating collaborations, bringing together people and practices from different disciplines. Mainly it’s design and technology, arts and science – game controllers and microscopes.
Geographically, I live at an intersection too: on the edge of central London, just as the roads reach out into outer London, the suburbs, the green-belt and the North. Like much of London, it’s where grime meets glamour, poverty sits cheek-by-jowl with wealth.
The image below was taken just next to Archway tube station: a vagrant is being hand-cuffed and held, next to a student from CSM/Byam Shaw doing a study for his post-graduate fine art degree.
There’s a fantastic tradition of Byam Shaw interaction with the local community via AIR. My favourite piece is one which has a horse running down Highgate Hill – a road normally over-run with traffic. Another example of contrasts, collaborations (the piece is from Diana Smith’s ‘Escape to Archway’).
Inside the tube station, a fantastic book-exchange scheme has had to be abandoned following complaints about inappropriate literature (religious books, apparently). I donated probably around 50 books over a period of 3-4 months, including books which had been given to me by friends. I liked the idea of a quiet space to read and think amidst the hurly-burly of daily London commutes.
Here’s a selection of stories, or stories about stories, which are worth reading:
James Baldwin, on being black in a white world.
Kevin Van Valkenburg on why stories matter – in every walk of life.
The fine line between fact and fiction – Geoff Dyer and others.
And a shout-out to Storythings – who are, as they say, experts at using stories to solve problems.