Placement does not explain, but cultivates a September garden / We Are Publication
Placement does not explain… abridges the writing of contemporary American poet Rosemarie Waldrop, whose recent appellation ‘gap gardening’ refers to the productive interstices between words, and between worlds.
We Are Publication’s ‘garden’ extends the group’s interest in jointly conducted research and speculative approaches to publishing. Its preliminary ‘groundwork’ took the form of a custom-made newspaper comprising images and texts generated specifically for the purpose of reassemblage by contributors under conditions of lockdown and separation. As Waldrop suggests, the placement of words (and plants) generates intermedial zones of transformation and potential as much as it might propagate meaning and fixed territories. We Are Publication’s cultivation of such border zones includes amongst others 1980s pop chanteuse Elkie Brookes, cuttings specialist William Burroughs and an errant Cottingley fairy, each recast as unlikely gardeners within an expansive domain undergoing repeated sonic and visual disturbance.
Originating in 2015 at Kingston School of Art’s Contemporary Art Research Centre, We Are Publication (WAP) centres on collaborations between artists Jonathan Allen, Volker Eichelmann, Rachel Cattle, Jenna Collins, John Hughes, Christian Newby, and Andrea Stokes. It regularly opens up its shape-shifting constituency to fellow artists and researchers who share a sense of the possibilities inherent in collective experimentation. WAP has ‘published’ in the form of a radio broadcast Diagram of an Hour (Resonance FM, London, 2016), a vinyl record (Curved Pressing, 2017), a handmade rug Notes on a Carpet(Five Years, London / Focal Point Gallery Unit Twenty-One, Southend-on-Sea / London Art Book Fair, Whitechapel Gallery, 2017 -2018), the exhibition and soundscape We.Are.Cut.Up. (Pratt Institute, New York / Radiophrenia, CCA Glasgow, 2019) and the exhibition and live performance program t h
e H O L D (Stanley Picker Gallery, Kingston, 2019).