The Walking Encyclopaedia's Walking Artists of the Day - Anwyl Cooper Willis, Bertram Weisshaar and Bill Aitchison

In a continuing series throughout the duration of The Walking Encyclopaedia, we'll be highlighting, daily, the works of three practitioners who employ the walk within their practice. Each of the highlighted artists and artworks were submitted for exhibition to The Walking Encyclopaedia. In each case alongside their artist statement, a link to the artist's website is provided for further exploration.

The Walking Encyclopaedia is a co-production between AirSpace Gallery and the Walking Artists Network.

#13 - Anwyl Cooper Willis - Two Books about Walking and Dates

Books are way of turning a virtual collection into something physical and of imposing a particular view- point on the material through the way it is organised and presented. My aim was to make the books distancing and dry. The two books are hand made, the text is stamped in blue. ‘...they look precious’, a perception based on the time expended in their construction. As in On Kawara’s date paintings, each date marks a day that has passed into an increasingly distant past, and we are now that much closer to the end than we were on the given date. 

Twelve months on the Pavements of Paris (2012).

Coloured photographs of dates stamped into the pavements of Paris are ordered by month. Ostensibly boring, but they have their variations and their interests. They are minute details in the landscape visible only to the interested and observant pedestrian.
Dates always refer to time (is my birth date included, what happened that day – to me, in the wider world?). These dates were carefully and purposefully made on the stated date, for some formal reason and according to some bureaucratically engendered ritual. There are shades of the Situationist derive in this book. 

The Distance between Two Points is a Line (2012)

Dates ordered by month. While walking the dog early in the morning I noticed that a trace of the route
was briefly visible in the dew. The trace of this route, the diagonal across a single field, is recorded in 33 photographs, taken between the end of January and June. Seasons pass, the attempt at making a straight line is mostly not very successful. 

The addendum:

The dog was walked every morning between 7.30 and 8.00
The path taken across the field was visible in the dew
The aim was to make that diagonal a straight line
The dog died in early January 

Website http://acooperwillis.wordpress.com/


#14 - Bertram Weisshaar - Spaziergangswissenschaft in Praxis. Formate in Fortbewegung

(that means: Strollology in Practice. Formats in Locomotion)

The book documents several formats of walking practice in the context of city-planning an art and therefore shows examples from Germany, Vienna (A), Zürich (CH) and includes even the article Walking and Talking East London.

Some articles in the book expound on the theories of Lucius Burckhardt, the founder of the so called Strollology.

Please note the English written book 

Lucius Burckhardt - Writings. Rethinking Man-made Environments    


#15 - Bill Aitchison - The Walking Encyclopaedia

Bill Aitchison was commissioned by AirSpace Gallery to write the introduction to the Exhibition - which can be read here - http://www.airspacegallery.org/index.php/projects/the_walking_encyclopaedia

Artistic director, Bill Aitchison works in and between performance, writing, video and audio. At the centre of the work is performance which thrives upon the danger of the moment and sense of being part of something unrepeatable. His performances are both rigorously structured and dynamic in their execution. Each are significantly different, though as a whole have a consistent style being open-ended, formally precise and using dry humour. Work in other media extends and adapts these strategies.


The Walking Encyclopaedia's Walking Artists of the Day - Ania Bas & Simone Mair, Anna Francis and Annalisa Lopez

In a continuing series throughout the duration of The Walking Encyclopaedia, we'll be highlighting, daily, the works of three practitioners who employ the walk within their practice. Each of the highlighted artists and artworks were submitted for exhibition to The Walking Encyclopaedia. In each case alongside their artist statement, a link to the artist's website is provided for further exploration.

The Walking Encyclopaedia is a co-production between AirSpace Gallery and the Walking Artists Network.

#10 - Ania Bas and Simone Mair - The Walking Reading Group on Participation, 2013
The Walking Reading Group on Participation offers a chance to discuss the issues surrounding participation, engagement, collaboration, and social practice through a dynamic walking reading group.

The artist Ania Bas and the cultural producer Simone Mair organise unusual reading groups: "The Walking Reading Group on Participation", walks along specified routes around a city conversing about texts that have been read beforehand about the concept of participation. They have already realised four "Walking Reading Groups" in collaboration with Gasworks and The Showroom in London and are preparing new editions for next October.
Ania Bas is one of those artists who enjoys blurring the frontiers between what art is and what it could be. Simone Mair moves between curating and art education. When Simone discovered that Ania had organised a reading group about participation in Cardiff, at the invitation of Elbow Room, she proposed that they planned something similar together in London, the current format of the sessions arising out of this collaboration: “We think that the dynamic of movement can mitigate the fear of saying something wrong in front of a group of 15 people sitting around a table.” During the walks there is in depth discussion of texts by distinct philosophers, critics and art professionals such as: Claire Bishop, Michel De Certeau, Emily Pethick, Louise Shelley, Emma Smith, Nato Thompson, Marijke Steedman, Jeanne van Heeswijk… “Yesterday for example we talked about a text where Grant Kester explained that knowledge ought to be mobilised, as its truth is then negotiated. We develop this idea of mobilization literally”.
For each session they prepare both different readings and different routes. To invigorate the conversations, people walk in pairs, changing companion and topic every 15 minutes, throughout the walk that lasts around 2 hours. The itineraries are not chosen by chance and have been prepared with the teams from Gasworks and The Showroom. Showroom for example has been developing for several years now the "Communal Knowledge"programme of collaborative projects involving local and international artists with people from the district where the organisation is located, so the route passes through sites linked to different projects. “But it’s not just a tour where we point to the right where see you can see this and on the left, that. Nonetheless, each day there’s a certain aspect of the text that relates to the space that can lead at a certain moment to the participants clicking, and thinking, “that was the place”.
As a counterpoint to The Walking Reading Group, another proposal that also plays with reading and walking in company is El Paseo by the artist Idoia Zabaleta presented during the encounter “3,2,1” looking at new scenic forms in the Alhóndiga Bilbao. It’s a performance that plays with the idea of walking, movement and group action. In this case a group of 9 people, who participate more or less as automata, read the novel “The Walk” by Robert Walser non-stop (during 3 and a half hours) while they move in an unpremeditated manner. The simultaneous reading, that requires a certain choral effort, aims to distract the individual from wanting to exercise control over his own movements, while the sound and movement also generate in the spectator an effect that escapes the control of the artist himself.
When you end The Walking Reading Group of Ania Bas and Simone Mair as much as when you end El Paseo of Idoia Zabaleta you walk home, thinking in movement, alone or accompanied, lost in your thoughts or allowing yourself to become absorbed by the landscape. Maybe you decide not to take the same route as always and in this more or less meandering, unconscious or planned and controlled derive, you come across something that you thought you were looking for. - SAIOA OLMO, 2013


collaboration |kəˌlabəˈrā sh ən| noun
1 the action of working with someone to produce or create something
2 traitorous cooperation with an enemy

art |ärt| noun
1 the expression or application of human creative skill and imagination,
• works produced by such skill and imagination
• creative activity resulting in the production of performances, events, publications: she's good at art

Ania Bas|anēaˈbas|
1 collaborative artist
2 developer of art projects

Website - http://aniabas.blogspot.co.uk/2013/04/the-walking-reading-group-on.html


#11 - Anna Francis - Harlech Walk, 2013 / Sideways, 2012

Sideways, 2012

Anna Francis is an artist whose practice examines private histories, public space and civic languages; using forms of intervention, drawing, mapping, performance, consultation and photography to investigate the impact that artists can have on their environments. Within Anna's practice she creates situations for herself, the public and other artists to explore places differently: often experimenting with leading and instruction by creating manuals, instructions, kits or leading guided tours. 
Harlech Walk, 2013

Walking is used variously within the artist's practice; as a research tool, a conversation starter, a way to disseminate findings or as performance. The two a3 text pieces presented here were produced on walks. 'Harlech Walk' is a collaborative piece with artist Bethan Lloyd Worthington, who remotely lead Anna on a tour of Harlech, Bethan's home town. 'Sideways' is documentation of a walk around Zutendaal camp during the Sideways Festival of Art and Walking 2012.

Anna is a Director at AirSpace Gallery, Stoke-on-Trent's contemporary, artist led exhibiting space, where she has particular responsibility for the education and outreach programmes.
Anna Francis is course leader on the BA Fine Art course at Staffordshire University.

Website http://www.annafrancis.blogspot.com


#12 - Annalisa Lopez - 3 Miles Out

3 Miles Out
Soundscape sourced in the local area: daily activity, fragments of conversation, personal stories captured around Well street. I uses all of these found elements to play with the fine line that separate local - the specificity of a place - and global - the sameness of a place to any other. 3 Miles Out is a record of a local community, its sound could be found anywhere else and nowhere else at the same time

Lopez works with participatory interventions and interactive installations of text, sound and images.
A sonic walk is the method she uses to research a new area.
By manipulating the everyday she stimulates people to move in the space around them differently, to stop and listen or to follow and instruction and contribute with their own personal stories.

Lopez' focus is on unveiling and indexing stories about the way we live, playing with all those idiosyncratic associations and thoughts that are so common and yet so private. She uses field recordings as a way to research a connect with a new community she’s working with and recordings of conversations and interviews as an ongoing archive of small sound and big voices that give personality to the area.

Website - www.annalopez.net