Fabulous Friday of Friends

8 fantastic happenings today. And a sensational pic from back in her Reno days of me mate Gail Allott who I address all my blogs too.

1] First I woke up to this tweet which I’m gonna nick, loads have already retweeted 

Dr Jenna C. Ashton‏ @heritagemcr Replying to @ExcavatingReno @cu1turesponge and 12 others 

@cu1turesponge @ExcavatingReno residency at the Whitworth is vital and v fasincating as a complex process of navigating the “master’s house” & cultural power, through local storytelling, language, artefacts, dialogue, physically occupying.

2] Then in reply to the big Thursday meeting with Whitworth technicians to price how much it will cost to transform our space into a temple, I wrote this email to head technician Paul Smith, I’ve mentioned our premeeting about art and artists last Friday.

 Linda Brogan 10:25 AM [7 hours ago] Paul, Samantha, Mark, Tristan

Thanks for the costings. Really appreciate the time it must have took. And yeah we have definitely made headroom.

Last night in discussions about the photo-book I kept coming across art. Oh I'll just say it: for me art gets in the way of art. What we were planning the other day is an 'art' installation. Also, the piled speakers talk of concert, not the intimacy of the Reno. What people love in their comments and visitors I talk to, is the lack of art and the feeling of humanity that they relate to. The story telling in the photos. Being able to see their own club. 

Therefore I'm thinking something much more simple but exaggerated. We worshipped the back wall of the Reno. From left to right: 3 Formica topped pub tables. They were the 3 top tables. Where our king and queen sat. Everyone's journey was from the loos to the 3 top tables. This could take months, years, some never got there. There was huge negotiations and alliances to make that move up. Behind them 3 top tables was a huge speaker. Will have to get DJ Persian to describe it. Then Persian's terrible blue painted picket fence stage. Then the other speaker or set of speakers. Black. In front of that was the knights’ oblong table. I think dramatically, over scaled, or maybe not, we recreate as our altar proud of the semi circle brick wall. 

Surrounding that, on an attached fake wall, never wider than the semi circle brick wall, is the posters A0, not in light boxes, just pasted in the way posters were pasted higgledy-piggledy in the 70s, of the iconic films that influenced us then. Taxi Driver. Enter The Dragon. Gone With the Wind. Imitation of Life. I'll find out the others films. Maybe iconic movie stars too. 

I think the square telly things may also be a mistake because they too reek of art installation. I have no idea how to incorporate the tellies we already have. Are they talking our memoirs from the top tables and oblong table? In a way we would never have when we were in the Reno. 

I agree about the stain glass being hard to read that high, and should definitely be abstracted. I'm hoping that it just comes to me too through the different interactions I have with visitors, stuff I read, Whitworth artistic staff, and the Reno 12.

And all the above should bring the costings down. When you are not busy, all 3, I'd love another conversation where we begin to imagine this by investigating the concept behind it. 

Also I would hugely like to say that when I first entered this building I saw it as a building and we would be collaborating with the Whitworth. What is utterly fabulous is getting to know your selves and the visitor team who I most interact with, as artists in your own right, and understanding that your skills, and the Reno 12s different skills, and working with the architecture of our space itself can become the real collaboration. After we 3 get more of a hold on the logistics of the build, the hard landscape, I can't wait to bring you and the Reno 12 together to begin thinking of the planting. 

Again thank you all.

He replied:  Paul Smith 10:50 AM [6 hours ago] Samantha, Mark, Tristan, Linda 

Hi Linda

I feel great joy reading your words below. You are absolutely right that “art gets in the way of art”. Never make art! Do you own thing -whatever that is – but don’t ever make art. 

The words you use- intimacy, humanity, story-telling, simple, exaggerated, worshiped, journey, terrible, dramatically, over-scaled, proud etc. are all communicating to us what you’re trying to get at. It’s really good, keep it coming.

We are learning a lot and getting a feel for the process you are going through.

Small back projections might be a better way of showing the videos without all the TV gubbins. Free standing walls are not a problem. Posters can be lit by DBN.

I am free to meet this morning or after 3pm. 

I reply 11:04 AM [6 hours ago] Paul, Samantha, Tristan, Mark 

Wow. I'm so thrilled with your reply. Proper buzzing. Paul I had to read your email a few times it reads so wonderful. Fabulous that you are so encouraging. And so bloody generous with your views. xxxx

3] Then I arrive at the Whitworth all admin sorted out, and I think I know that person sat on the sofa. She waves. It’s my good good mate Sonia Hughes. We had a bit of a falling out about 6 years ago when we tried to work together. When both of us was sick of the ‘masters house,’ but we were both still infected with its rules. This is 12 noon. She’s been there since 10-30. Soaked everything in. Watched all the memoir on the TV. She just keeps repeating ‘it is amazing’. We go for cake and coffee in the café that used to be a pub on the corner of Moss Lane East near Wilmslow Rd.  She’s been following me since the beginning of the project secretly. We tell each other the journey of the last 6 years. She’s since got married. Wow. I’m jealous about her evolving project in Iceland. Wow. She’s also flying. We kiss kiss kiss and vow not to lose each other again. We have a shorthand that made me able to think the way I do. Now it just isn’t in corridors. It is out there. Really fucking out there. Impossible If I’d have never known her.

4] Then I arrive back at the Whitworth. Our space is totally alive. There are people everywhere. Looking a the pics, the artefacts, listening to the memoirs. Me and Triggy, who is cutting the white off montage photos ready for Rude Gal photographing them for our photo-book, end up blabbing our stories to Bernie who works for the BBC. And Diane who invites us to come and talk at Included Learning. Teenagers excluded from school. Diane remarks: ‘kids like these feel the Whitworth is too posh for them’. So after we’ve visited them and got them used to us, they will come and spend a Thursday evening with us. In my book a total win to bring them in.

5] Susie Prouse, Susie Mousah and Dionne Richardson arrive to realign the newly trimmed montage photos. And decide which should come off the table onto the wall and be included in our book. We are more industrious than a beehive. Pure laughs. Pure decisions. Pure teamwork. Pure proud of what we achieved.

6] Then the cunts turn Jekyll on the way home when I wander across the road. Imagining me getting killed. Having to get John to film it. Karen taking arty pics of the tyre track across my forehead. First though my body would start to smell because it would take her a couple of hours to get from Leeds. Then John filming their distraught reaction to my death. Then the headlines. Then Rachel reading about it on FB. Then posting me on the Memorial Wall tonight because Susie knows my year of birth and my year of passing. Then them consoling Rachel with: ‘she had a dead good day before she passed.’ Cunts.

7] Pure laughing in the street we walk up on 2 Reno heads. Kevin who was friends with Fonzo and Himmet. And Soraya who was our Pam’s true true mate. It’s 1976 again.

 8] Arrive home to £3000 towards our endeavors waiting in my inbox just need to do an invoice from a long term friend of the project One Manchester Housing Association [logo below] who has invested in every stage from day one. How good has this day been, hey. And I still wrote my blog. Smiling. xxx

Can't comment use Chrome. #excavatingthereno #therenolive #love #friendship

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