Writing Encounters is proud to announce a collaboration with internationally renowned artist, Caroline Bergvall:
At midday on the 2011 summer solstice, Tuesday, 21 June 2011, the skies above and around Leeds city centre will play host to a unique sky banner project conceived by artist and writer, Caroline Bergvall, and delivered in partnership with Writing Encounters and Leeds Art Gallery, as a part of the 20th annual Refugee Week celebrations.
As part of the project, the artist is inviting people across Leeds to pick up their phones and video cameras, and help to gather film footage that will be edited together and screened at Leeds Art Gallery later this year.
Bergvall is based in London and of French-Norwegian heritage, and this perspective - crossing borders with language - is at the heart of her work.
This new piece, entitled Ghost Cargo, is inspired by a small-scale model for a large sculpture by Barbara Hepworth, created as her contribution to the Monument to the Unknown Political Prisoner, an international art competition and exhibition held in 1953 at Tate Britain. Hepworth’s submission did not win the prize and the work has remained unrealised. Yorkshire born Hepworth, a key figure in the development of modern sculpture, was an active and outspoken defender of individual freedom, and this has played a large part in motivating Bergvall to rediscover this moving and highly politicised piece.
“As Refugee Week starts on the solstice this year it is a good time to remind ourselves that the sun also creates many shadows, some longer than others", says Bergvall. "Ghost Cargo is an invitation to look up and reflect, and to celebrate the importance of every person’s right to move and settle freely. The text created for this work resembles that of the hangman game, piecing together a few missing letters to make a full phrase. It is often by piecing things together that we become more aware”.
Refugee Week is a UK-wide programme of arts, cultural and educational events that celebrate the contribution of refugees to the UK, and encourages a better understanding between communities. Refugee Week 2011 takes place from 20 – 26 June 2011.