Month: June 2019

Refocus

It was so great working with hmurd + getting two rooms of corsica filled with amazing a/v + great audience! We proved it’s possible to fill a two-roomed event in a top-notch venue with this live coding stuff, and pay everyone almost half-decently (including ourselves!).

It was also time consuming and stressful, and left no time to develop the CCAIFOOD link-up between CCAI and hellocatfood. I also feel I need to explore new ideas and in the process get some forever projects completed.

So I’m going to try to take a moratorium on algorave organisation for a while. Will still be organising some other activities – running the live code summer school, working with no bounds fest on algorave stuff (but with artist development and more diffused through their programme), and hopefully working with a Roma girls group on bringing live coding to a festival in Rotherham.. But focused on artistic development and community building rather than big algoraves (although starting advanced planning for algomech #4 already..).

I have a kind of addiction to event organisation but now I just feel I need more time to focus on my own arts research. If anyone else wants to do algoraves in Sheffield (or elsewhere) then I’m very happy to share tips + resources though! I’ll have some new projects that I could propose too :)

Live code summer school + chill out spaces

We’re doing a weekend Live Code Summer School in August/Sept 2019, with tracks for Hydra (taught by its creator Olivia Jack), Foxdot (taught by its creator Ryan Kirkbride) and TidalCycles (taught by its creator me). Over 40 signups already, it’s going to be intense! There’s still some spaces left for the Hydra and Foxdot tracks, full info here.

On the registration form, I asked people how we can improve access for them, and quite a few asked for a quiet area to relax. In some cases this is probably for a diagnosed condition, but it made me think of my experience in Japan, where during Kumihimo braiding tuition, I was invited to have a nap on a tatami. Joanne and Lucy said that part way through a workshop they were giving on that trip, the participants would just go and lie down for a bit.

This seems such a nice thing to do, and the relationship between resting/sleeping and learning is well known in psychology fields. Academic events I’ve attended have felt more like durational performance art than a productive way to learn or carry out research, with talks every 15 minutes (including questions), with the only breaks dedicated to necking caffeine and dry biscuits. Some people need to chill out once in a while, but more relaxation would likely be better for everyone!

This raises some difficult question about what a quiet space should be like.. How to make a quiet space where people feel safe? Should they be gender segregated? If so, how to best do that while properly respecting everyone’s gender identity? How to negotiate people who like to chill out by chatting, while others like to chill out by introspecting? What if it’s super popular? Might have to invest in some tatami mats..

Updatemore discussion here