The Reno@ The Whitworth Our Space

If all goes to plan this will be our beautiful space for at least 6 months. Those sculptures will be gone. And we will be a living exhibition as we turn the material we already have into a work of art. The glass ceiling is already in bits.

The minute we excavated the Reno the glass ceiling fell in. It took me a moment to realise it. Well six months actually. 

Fuck it. I can feel a confession coming on. I love Moss side. I can be myself. People talk my language. I spent this afternoon in Radio Diamond talking about their fabulous plans as they make themselves a registered charity. An also talking about them training me to have my own radio show. I think I'd be good actually. I loved doing the interviews. I'd have a problem trying not to swear.

When I was leaving I laughed about I was on my way to be with the white people them in the Whitworth where I love to swear. In fact that is part of my armour. I'll never forget the first time I swore in my Art's Council meeting and the look on their face like did she just actually do that.

It makes me think of assimilation. To me that means the ladies' white gloves on the ship coming from Jamaica and their little outfits like they had to be English now. Before I swore in the Art's Council, before I swore in our Reno memoirs knowing the arts would be watching us, before I dug up the Reno, I felt like I was wearing those little white gloves.  

I have strange thoughts. I wonder who those original Jamaicans like my dad would have been if they had not ever wore those white gloves, or those trilbys, or those suits, or their Sunday bests to board that ship, and shame on me I have no idea what my dad's journey was like, not a moment of what went on on that ship. I don't know anything about his feelings. 

For now his feelings and those fake suits seem fused together and I don't know what that means yet. But I do know that his life here must have felt like playing a part because in Jamaica they called someone with one leg, One Leg. What the fuck am I talking about? The person who left Radio Diamond today, me, was the same person who entered the Whitworth, no white gloves.

I still don't know what I am talking about. Except I was sat in their little garden thinking I love Moss Side because I can be me, but I also love beautiful things and their garden is beautiful, especially in the sun. And just like those Jamaicans like my dad came here to escape poverty I feel like I have been out a sea. The memoirs felt like a voyage. The excavation was certainly epic. Now I have landed.

Actually, we have all landed. All of us who were participants and audience have landed. And just like our parents left descendants, we will do that too in the arts. There is money and stability in the arts. We just have to learn how to access it and use it on our own terms. 

If all goes to plan this will be our beautiful space for at least 6 months. Those sculptures will be gone. And we will be a living exhibition as we turn the material we already have into a work of art. The glass ceiling is already in bits. 

I'd love you to start thinking about what we could do with it. 

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