More Works

‘Public Consultation’ is an ongoing performance project which explores disciplinary care. It brings together research into new prison architecture, socialist leisure spaces and dog training. How we speak to dogs in order to mold them into contemporary society is used as a mode of address for examining the soft community discipline of new prison architecture as it relates to a radical history collective spaces. For this performance the artist engaged in embodied research, working as dog walker under the brand name ‘Shona’s Woofy World’, recording the experience, its social media and interactions with clients. The resultant performance attempts to herd different segments of the audience around the floor in the tone of a dog-trainer, with short interchangable phrases in the form of commands: “tossing chewed-up squeaky toys around while yapping at us to be more civic-minded, engage better with local and national government, but not to show our teeth. It’s a whip-smart takedown of the pseudo-economic jargon that pervades public arts funding.”

It has so far been performed as part of experimental music events at Dissenter Space ‘Voices in Buildings’ reviewed here and Summerhall, Edinburgh.

What does it mean to count words? or to spend the majority of a writing life within small word counts of funding applications?. To live in the speculative framework of life deferred.

The project Talented Grants began with an essay about funding applications within the structure of funding applications. It tracked the changing language of the national funding body Creative Scotland, whilst critiquing the privatisation of public funding of arts in Scotland, trying to undo notions of “no clean money” and pointing to something outside of a general mathematical flattening – the faux transparency of limited transactional desires.

The performance ‘Talented Grants’ ended with an indefinite collective counting exercise. Here the counting of the word count is an abstraction of labour spent.  What then does counting word count together do? At once a nonsense action it was also a liberating, somewhat cathartic exercise. Does it ‘bundle the horror away’,  akin to deaths counted as a statistic, or does it hold to account for the hours of surplus labour we collectively have, marking them, making them ‘count’.

Originally commissioned for Good Work, Bad Money zine edited by Rosie Roberts.


This was a performance for the ‘Bodybuilding’ exhibition, Market Gallery, Glasgow, December 2017. The artists were asked to respond to the area local to the gallery, Dennistoun in the east end of the city. This performance was made in response to Graham Square, the site of the former entrance to the agricultural market and labour exchange fairs, which gave way to political organising, now a facade leading to new appartments. The east end of Glasgow has undergone significant regeneration projects in the past decades, the script recited as a speech on this site used some of the language used to promote these regeneration projects, but adapted to the first person and referring to the artist’s heavily pregnant body.

“I was nine months pregnant, there was no getting away from that fact. The performance  had to incorporate this physical reality. As I looked at the the language used in local regeneration schemes their themes of new life at the sake of destruction of the old, seemed to echo the progress of my body at the time. The Baby Box, another state sanctioned scheme, which held items which seemed like a basic list to keep this new life alive, neatly doubled as a podium to (barely) keep my pregnant weight aloft, and allowed my self-turned political speech to be heard over the crowd.”

The work was later acquired by the University of Edinburgh Art Collection. It is currently on show at the Scottish National Gallery of Modern Art in the sixth NOW exhibition

Performance at Market Gallery: Dressed by Soft Play  Photography by Matthew Arthur Williams

Installation view: NOW VI, Scottish National Gallery of Modern Art One, October 2019, National Galleries of Scotland. Photography © National Galleries of Scotland.

The script was subsequently recorded which can be listened to here.

This performance was commissioned for The Scottish Endarkenment: Art and Unreason 1945 -Present, Dovecot Studios. It was performed several times during the exhibition and as part of the Edinburgh Festival, running May – August 2016. It was also performed for the Jerwood Staging Series – Blend the Acclaim of your Chant with the Timbrels, curated by George Vasey, London, July 2016. Image credit: Hydar Dewachi

The work investigated how the imaging of the female form in a modernist Scottish novel, The Prime of Miss Jean Brodie, heavily grounded in an idea of Enlightenment and progressive education, could relate to visions of the female now within contemporary modes of representation, as mediated by computer interfaces and digital materiality.