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The HAT Project 2006/07 is supporting 20 exchange fellowships between England, South Asia and Australia

Clare Birks

Residency at Arts Reverie

My stimulus for instigating this field of research is a very English one, The ‘Wassail’ tour, reflecting the traditional customs and practices found in English Folklore at midwinter, a project devised by ‘Folkworks’ the North of England Folk Music Development Agency based at The Sage, Gateshead. The research I undertook during the process of designing the show culminating in giant banners depicting images from the celebrations. This instilled in me a curiosity and interest in folk traditions and mural paintings. I am interesting in exploring links between British and India folk traditions, tales and performance and seeing how we have, during the past 60 years since Independence, continued to influence and inspire each other. My other stimulus is Tim Supple’s production of ‘Midsummer Nights Dream' and Sumant Jayakrishnan’s set and costume designs for the production, a composite set of ropes, muslin, thatch and branches, creating the perfect framework for the performance, something akin to an assault course and a spiders web. I would relish the opportunity to visit amongst others The National Institute of Design, Ahmedabad, Gujarat, were Sumant Jayakrishnan studied, and the Calico Museum of Textiles and any other recommendations you may have. I would also like to participate in some voluntary work during my residence and would welcome advice about this. I have worked extensively in Schools and Colleges as a Teacher and Arts Practitioner since 1999, and now consider it a principle area of my practice. I look forward to undertaking a residency with excitement and anticipation, with an open mind and no fixed agenda with the purpose to record my experiences however diverse with the intention afterwards of enriching my practice and working towards a multi-sensory Exhibition/Performance.