‘A reproduction of three weeks in May 1970’
Organised by NOVEL
May 2018 – May 2019
(multiple venues), Reading, UK
In May 1970 artist Rita Donagh and a group of students occupied a studio at the University of Reading. Staging events, performances and collective actions they wrote and discussed circumstances within and beyond the confines of the university. Didactic conventions and context were replaced in an attempt to diagram a charged collective knowledge. Activated against a backdrop of student protest, in particular the Kent State massacre, the group sounded political images, registered distance and invested in a politics of time, place and bodies. Donagh’s own response, the painting ‘Reflection on Three Weeks in May 1970′ uses a social-political cartography to plot distinct events, between image and experience.
This historical scenario acts as a catalyst for the year-long publishing and curatorial project. A reproduction of three weeks in May 1970 will present a programme of interdisciplinary projects, commissions and events – with contributions from Patricia L Boyd, Helen Cammock, Renée Green, Studio for Propositional Cinema, and Steven Warwick.
NOVEL is an itinerant curatorial and publishing platform devised by Alun Rowlands and Matt Williams that draws together artists writing, texts and poetry that oscillate between modes of fiction and criticism. A cacophony of voices, that is the primary condition of writing, seek to break the habitual methods of representation and productions of subjectivity.