Just another little update on where I’m up to with what is becoming a slightly confusing and multi-headed project.
I’m going through a phase where I’m feeling quite good about it all – I’m solidly ‘in there’ with quite a few different stories now, although at times I do question where I’m going with it all and how I’m going to make sense of this huge mass of information that I seem to be collecting. I still have 10 months until I need to report to the Arts Council about what I’ve produced with the money they gave me – by when I suspect I should also have ideas about how to share it. For all intents and purposes I’ve lumped my other pot of funding – from Side Gallery in Newcastle – in with the ACE grant, although for Side I’m creating a distinct body of work from the North East of England, which I haven’t really shown much from on here yet.
At the moment I’m still following Ramona and Lida, both of whom are already featured in galleries on this site, plus a family of Czech Roma from Middlesbrough, who are not. Then I have two Czech Roma men – Petr, about whom I’m in the process of making a photofilm, and Lubos. And then there’s my latest discovery, Denisa, a postgraduate law student and Czech Roma from Leicester. Some of these will be less in-depth than others – it’s all very unclear at the moment. There may even be more young-people related work in time, a little like my Harehills spin-off. This means the work now has a really nice spread across the country – so far Manchester and Salford, Leeds, Peterborough and Leicester, and Middlesbrough.
This week’s good news is that Ramona’s daughter is not going back to Romania to live after all. Last night they flew there for a week but her primary school saved the day by refusing to hold her place open for more than a few weeks. I hung out with them while they were preparing to get going:
A few from Middlesbrough:
And my newest addition to the project: