Saturday, 25 February 2017

Digital Poet in Residence at StAnza International Poetry Festival 2017

I'm excited to be participating in StAnza 2017 as Digital Poet in Residence.

StAnza is Scotland's International Poetry Festival taking place in St Andrews, Fife, each spring. Recognised as one of the leading poetry festivals in Europe, over the years it has featured a strong list of contemporary poets from around the world. This year sees the 20th annual edition, which will run from 1st to 5th March and will feature an international lineup of over 60 poets, artists and musicians taking part in around 100 events. The main theme of StAnza 2017 is On The Road, with the festival examining all kinds of travel and journeys.

For my residency at StAnza 2017 I have devised a project with title Browsing History for which I will use simple text and image editing tools to make poetry out of my personal Internet browsing, in real time. The resulting pieces will be erected as physical and subsequently as digital installations, and will cumulatively provide an oblique record of this year's festival and its setting in time and place, filtered through my online reading habits over the five days of the festival. Further to algorithmic influence, clickbait, and what I get regularly drawn to, I'm particularly keen to have my browsing contaminated by suggested reads; I am therefore inviting anyone interested to send me, over the period 1-5 March, links to news stories, articles or other current material they find interesting. Get in touch via Twitter (@c_makris #StAnza17).

Underpinning this performative residency are my work and interest in the concept of 'reading as writing' and our 'toggling' between physical and digital communication and personas. I will talk about the mechanics and ideas behind the residency and read from recent work during a 'meet the artist' event at the Byre Theatre on Saturday 4 March (11am start, free). In addition to this formal event, I will perform two half hour 'live sessions' over the weekend during which my computer will be connected to a large screen in the theatre foyer and therefore make my compositional process visible.

Follow StAnza's social media accounts and/or my twitter feed for updates.

My thanks to Eleanor Livingstone, Festival Director, and Annie Rutherford, Programme Co-ordinator, for their invitation to participate in StAnza 2017, and their cooperation towards delivering this project.

Here are two poems I made earlier this year using the process I will employ during the residency.

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