IF WE STOP: Introduction
Updated: Aug 25, 2020
An Introduction: I’m delighted to introduce you to Zahra Dalilah, Katrina Niebergal and Julie Tomlin, the three correspondents I have invited to report and respond, as part of Call Centre.
We met online last week and I’ve transcribed the bulk of this conversation below. This was an opportunity for each of the correspondents to introduce themselves whilst discussing initial thoughts, actions and concerns regarding the project.
I’m Katrina, I’m a visual artist, I’m Canadian and I live in the Netherlands. I’m trying to stay here and I’m currently in the middle of a permanent residency application. I work mostly in installation, sculpture, video, writing and I’ve made a couple of books. I’ve been involved in artist run initiatives and now run a space, The Pole, out of my home in Den Haag.
How I met Andrew?
I guess it was in the early spring last year when Andrew and I met when he was passing through town. A friend of his runs this space in Rotterdam and I went as a few friends of mine were performing. I was finishing up my master’s degree thesis at the time and Andrew and I had a very quick chat about it. Afterwards Andrew got in touch and we ended up having an email correspondence, discussing and passing all sorts of things back and forth. We’ve remained in contact and around quarantine we started to have phone calls, then the invitation for this project came.
In terms of what I do, I write, and I also work for an organisation called SHED, but I spend a lot of my time trying to get away from the computer. During lockdown I’ve been fortunate to have access to a garden and a few acres, so I’ve been experimenting with things I haven’t done before like straw bale building and permaculture. I don’t really know where it is all going but I’m just having experiences. I’ve been studying herbalism, and just trying to find different ways of being.
How I met Andrew?
I remember sitting in my friend’s office in Silverdale. I remember because it was over Skype and everyone thought I had a really big book collection as I was sat in front of their library.
We were going to Eroles in the hills of southern Spain, to stay in this quirky little house. There was one session where we were all asked to spend 24hours in isolation out in the open air, in silence, and then return to tell our experiences. I nearly triggered the search operation because I came back late. Andrew had gone out with a sort of a confident manner about his ability and then told one of the funniest stories about his experience. I’d had the most enchanted, at-one-with-nature evenings, whilst Andrew had experienced the complete opposite. It was very funny.
What do I do? I write a bit. I have a background in arts and culture journalism, but I’ve parted ways with that for a while, maybe a year or two ago. Recently I’ve been doing more creative writing, and I’ve recently finished a theatre writing course. So, I’m hitting an exploratory phase of writing at the moment, especially in lockdown where I’ve permitted myself more time and energy for exploring than I have before. I’ve had a transformational time these past four months, which is why I think this project particularly spoke to me.
I’ve also discovered that I really like plants and making candles. Those are my lockdown revelations.
How I met Andrew?
I met Andrew quite recently actually, towards the end of last year. I used to work at the same organisation that Julie works at called SHED, we had breakfast together in Newcastle. We’d had lovely chats, the vibe worked really well, and I was interested and excited by a lot of the work that he’d been doing.
IN CONVERSATION: ZAHRA / KATRINA / JULIE / ANDREW
Thursday 30th July, 2020