Sat 21 Apr, 4-6pm, Scout Hall
Pathmakers, pilgrims and other political walkers
4-6pm, The McBoyle Scout Centre, 5 Princes Street, Huntly
How has walking been used for political action? And can walking be an artistic gesture with political relevance? We will explore answers to these questions in relation to Rachel Ashton’s and May Murad’s Walking Without Walls project, which informs the Slow Marathon 2018 routes in Huntly and Gaza this year.
Inspired by the plant journal of pacifist Rosa Luxemburg, the two artists have been identifying, collecting and drawing the wild plants in their respective everyday landscapes and mapping out the routes for their Slow Marathon walks. Whilst Rachel has been negotiating her way with landowners and farmers, May has found herself dealing once again with the complexities of living in Gaza, an occupied territory that leaves little possibility of individual and collective use of public space. During the Gathering, the talks will illustrate Walking Without Walls in its making, and unearth the complex issues of political significance that underpin the project.
The artists’ pathmaking explorations into their own land were accompanied by a year-long exchange through various digital applications. In a time of rising nationalism and restrictive legislations that hinder crossings of national borders, the two artists have been exploring opportunities and limits of new technologies in fostering transnational long-distance collaboration.
Paintings, drawings and other documentation resulting from their visual exchange will be displayed on the occasion.
A selection of these materials will be on display at the Ethical Gift Shop in Huntly until May 14th.
4:00 pm Welcome
4:15 pm Blake Morris: Walking as a political artistic gesture
4:45 pm Mick Napier: Walking in Palestine and in and out of the Gaza Strip
5:15 pm Claudia Zeiske, Rachel Ashton, May Murad: Walking Without Walls in the Making
5:45 pm Exhibition Opening and Refreshments
6.00 pm Registration for all walkers
Dr. Blake Morris is a walking artist and researcher based in London. He is a founding member of the Walk Exchange, a cross-disciplinary walking group based in New York City. Along with Clare Qualmann (Walking Artists Network), he co-edits ‘Lines of Desire’ for critical cartography journal Living Maps Review. His work has been shown at Ovalhouse Theatre (London), Bogart Salon (New York City) and Superfront Gallery (Los Angeles, Detroit, NYC). He currently works as a visiting lecturer in performing arts at the University of East London, where he completed his doctoral thesis, Walking Networks: The Development of an Artistic Medium (2017).
Mick Napier is a retired lecturer who has worked in the Middle East for some time. Between 1987 and 2012, he has travelled to Palestine and Israel 19 times. He witnessed the deterioration of the situation back in those countries through his several trips. He was deeply involved in the Scottish Palestine Solidarity Campaign for 18 years.
Claudia Zeiske is a walker, activist and Art Director of Deveron Projects. Rachel Ashton is a painter, musician and writer based in Huntly who collaborated on the Walking Without Walls project with May Murad, an artist based in Gaza whose work has been shown internationally.