This blog will comprise a collection of ephemera, mess and miscellaneous artifacts reflecting on the writer's life.

Monday, July 31, 2006


I am sorry I didn't blog last week it was mainly because I was sulking that I couldn't download the amazing pictures of Molly in the Sheffield fountains in the heat last week
from my mobile phone to my lap top (advice please)
so instead we have Molly in our new teepee in Dorset.
Yes, here we have our own hippy festival.
Happy holidays!

Monday, July 24, 2006

Check this out

here. It is hot in London and sweaty on the tube.
Molly and I are going to Sheffield and then to Rotherham today, which will be fun.
We will take the tram to Meadowhall.
My favourite place.

Friday, July 21, 2006

affordances and constraints

Originally uploaded by larisaflicksitall.
Guy's post today made me think about affordances and constraints.
I recently argued in an article here that affordances can be culturally as well as materially shaped.
I see affordances as what can be done with a particular sign, its possibilities, but I think that the way we consider the sign is so culturally shaped it is impossible to actually just see it as material.
That is why artefacts in homes are so linked to narratives, they are shaped by the stories we tell of them.

Thursday, July 20, 2006


I like the idea that we will all be issued with a swipe card where we can record our carbon imprint.
I read it here.
I will be wonderfully smug being a train user who practically lives on Midland Mainline.
Whoops I forgot San Francisco.

Monday, July 17, 2006

Lift Off

Lift Off
Originally uploaded by Green Destiny.
We have lift off!
Thanks to Green Destiny for this photo and Zahir for his hard work on this site!
We have gone live!
The photo also reminds me of this exhibition which we went to on Saturday.
One of my favourite short films was of an event in upstate New York with strange animals and balloons.
Very celebratory.

Thursday, July 13, 2006

Miscellaneous piles

are the bane of my life.
They are everywhere in my house.
There is a great division between those who think it is important to tidy up piles
and those who just look at them.
I am afraid I look at piles and wonder what it is in them.
Here are a few in my house.
We start outside Molly's room and wonder what these are.

We proceed to the Bratz cache,

before going to our living room where the piano is unrecognisable because of all the piles,

(truly appalling)
finally we get to my study where there is a long stretchy pile reflecting the struggle I am having doing this project

and a nice flippy pile reflecting the fact that tomorrow morning I start work writing about this project.

But I think I am still a messy thinker.
Here is one solution.

Monday, July 10, 2006


I love the word Wiki.
It sounds so subversive, somewhere between a witch and a wizard but definitely not too institionalized.
So I was interested to read this survey here, brought to us courtesy of Sheila.
I have been thinking about Vic's talk at this seminar on civic participation and I liked her take on it that you can insert your identity, as people do on Wikipedia, in these multifarious ways.
Civic participation is a word which normally makes me want to go to sleep, but Vic made it exciting.
I think it was because she made it more accessible, something that teenagers and women could do, not just men in suits.
It involves taking photos with your phone and being active in a kind of street, portable, web-engaged kind of way.
Some of the men in the audience (not all) didn't like her definition of civic participation but I think it was because her definition was a bit subversive.
Just like Wikis.

THis image is from Dr Joolz who is the ultimate Wiki person.

Friday, July 07, 2006

on-line and off-line

does it matter what it is?
Like home and school the lines between the two used to be important, now they increasingly blur.
Jackie Marsh (who is speaking today here but alas I cannot go as I am busy finishing this project) talks about seepage between the two domains.
This a bit watery but nice I think.
Guy and I talked about this on Wednesday, at this seminar and he showed in this post here, how the two are intertwined, as the blog and the reality dip in and out of each other.
Here is a watery image.

Thursday, July 06, 2006

Postcards from the edge

The discussions yesterday at this seminar series were so exciting.
Some wierd and wacky thoughts from our discussions include one discussion about postcards.
Dr Joolz never sends postcards (nor do I) but we thought maybe blogging was the new postcard?
When Dr Joolz was in New York we could catch up with her through her extensive posts,
and likewise Digigran's trip to the Galapagos was fully covered here.
I meanwhile have such an exciting holiday destination.
I am going to this house on this island here.

How romantic is that?
So remote and UNUSUAL.
PS The house actually looks like this.

That was the postcard.

Monday, July 03, 2006


Is an interesting idea.
I have always worked with the idea of texts as traces of social practice, and then considered the 'inventory of traces' that lies behind the text.
So I have worked with the idea of inventory.
The original quote is from Gramsci, and then quoted by Said, in Orientalism, that we can talk about the way in which an ensemble of texts is made up of what he calls 'The personal dimension', which is the idea of knowing theyself, 'as a prodocut of the historical process to date, which has disposited in you an infinity of traces, without leaving an inventory'
Said then insists that Gramsci said in the original Italian, that it is therefore imperative to compile such an inventory (Said 1978:25).
I wrote about this here.
Provenance comes from the work of Kress, and is connected to the history of a multimodal object.
I am interested in work that unsettles the concept of provenance, and disrupts it as here.
I am also interested in tracing provenance in visual and linguistic artefacts, and trying to find out their origin.
Where was this picture taken?

Writing a blog is ofcourse an activity where provenance is disrupted.
This picture came from my friend Alison, on a conference trip to the Tyrol, and she knew I liked fashion and sent it.
But how could you know unless you ethnographically knew me and my friends?
PS The link to the Tate comes from her too.
Another trace within this text.