Hearing the Invisible

Project Details


Artist development is currently undervalued and increasingly difficult to justify as budgets for creative work and practice-based projects are reduced. Critical thinking requires infrastructure and the work of relationship building is at risk. A need has arisen to foreground the invisible emotional and intellectual labour taking place even before an artist arrives at the studio or rehearsal space.

‘Hearing the Invisible’ aims to address this by bringing together two artists and artist-led organisations from Scotland, Spain, and Northern Ireland via a series of exchanges. This pivots around the practices of two artists, Rebecca Collins (Scotland) and Silvia Zayas (Spain), whose individual practices engage in relationship building across disciplines and international geographies. The motivation for this collaboration is based on the use of methodologies of creative practice which, having briefly encountered each other at a workshop organised by Rebecca in 2022, both felt they had more to share. Both artists, in their practice, put emphasis on the methodologies they use which require substantial effort.

The project has five phases which enable the artists to have an in-depth engagement with each other’s practice. Phase I sees the development of a lecture performance about the emotional labour involved in Rebecca’s work to be undertaken in-person via a residency at AZALA LaSierra, Álava, Spain. In Phase II the focus shifts to Zayas’ practice as the coast of Barcelona is replaced with the post industrial landscape of Belfast, with support from Catalyst Arts, Belfast. Phase III (is online) and refracts the methodological findings from the previous two phases into a booklet for circulation in artist-run spaces with support from Dorothy Michaels.

The project documents aspects of uncertainty, struggle, relationship building, kinship and kindness – all elements that ultimately inform the substrata of artistic practice.

Funded by the Four Nations International Fund through Arts Council England, Arts Council Northern Ireland, Arts Council Wales, Creative Scotland and Wales Arts International.
Effective start/end date15/01/2431/12/25


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