What We Talk About When We Talk About Work

November 2017 - August 2018  Research

What We Talk About When We Talk About Work is a programme of public discussions bringing together curators and artists working across the north of the UK with creative practitioners from different European cities. The discussions are focused upon exploring ways of working outside, across, between and within existing institutional structures. Each event takes a particular thematic inviting practitioners to share their current projects and their approach to working. The programme launched on the 2nd of November 2017 at Middlesbrough Institute of Modern Art. Events will occur regularly until August 2018. Each discussion is being live broadcast by this is tomorrow.

The project has been developed by Laura in collaboration with this is tomorrow, Contemporary Visual Arts Network North West, Yorkshire & Humberside Visual Arts Network, North East Contemporary Visual Arts Network and the participating venues of Middlesbrough Institute of Modern Art, NGCA Sunderland, Bluecoat, Grundy Art Gallery, The Tetley and The Whitworth.  Supported using public funding by Arts Council England.

Ambiguous Implements

July 2017 - April 2018  Curating

Bringing together 17 practitioners from the fields of design, jewellery, metalwork, and contemporary sculpture Ambiguous Implements is a touring exhibition that presents a playful collection of works, evocatively subverting, reframing and reconsidering the familiar items of our day to day domestic life. The exhibition and accompanying events programme seeks to bring new perspectives to bare on the everyday tools we use for eating, grooming and cleaning.

The exhibition opened at Roco Cooperative Sheffield on 6th July 2017 and toured to the different venues of B&B Project Space Folkestone (28th October-19th November), Vittoria Street Gallery, Birmingham City University (29th November - 18th December) and Touchstones Rochdale (May 2018). Two symposia accompany the exhibition programme Crafting the Contemporary at Folkestone Museum on Saturday 28th of October and Rethinking Domestic Design at The School of Jewellery, Birmingham City University on Wednesday 29th November

The project has been developed in collaboration with the contemporary jeweller Rachael Colley and interdisciplinary artist Nuala Clooney. Funded by Arts Council England and supported by Studio Dust.


Current  Writing

FEAST is an online publication project that seeks to combine articles on contemporary arts practices with recipes, food histories and literary narratives in an effort to highlight, question and contemplate the varied roles food and its associated practices hold within the everyday. The project is funded by Arts Council England and Leeds Beckett University.

How Fine A Mess

May 2017 - present  Writing

As part of dust collective I develop the editorial focus of the bimonthly publication How Fine A Mess. Mess contains interviews, articles and artworks that explore food production, consumption, sustainability and health. Rooted in Sheffield,the publication draws on the rich landscape of the city’s diverse communities to share ideas around sustainable living and the future of food. With content from academics, artists, makers and doers Mess disseminates research and creative practices to a wide public as well as giving
individuals working on grassroots projects, social enterprises and charity organisations a platform to share their work, knowledge and passion.

Hot Pot

14th September 2017  Writing

Taking Burgess’s recipe for Lancashire hot pot as a framework from which to discuss and interpret the varied activities of preparing, producing and consuming food, Hot Pot brings together new works by Will Carr, Melanie Jackson, Kit Poulson, Niamh Riordan and Marie Toseland as well as a collection of recipes from Manchester chef Mary Ellen McTague, Fairland Collective and Studio Morison. Each contribution to the book presents a unique take on Burgess’s recipe for hot pot and the role of food more generally throughout his extensive oeuvre.

The book launched at The Whitworth Manchester and is available to purchase here

Performance Research: On Libraries

April 2017  Writing

Essay on the work of Heather and Ivan Morison for the April edition of the journal

Dining Events

Current   Curating

In conjunction with the publication project FEAST a series of curated dining events have been developed, using the structure of a meal as a framework to engaging with different creative practices.

  • Going Public -
    A meal celebrating the opening of The Napoleone Collection at Touchstones Gallery, Rochdale. Throughout the evening food was eaten from crockery, cultery and servingware made by artists Edwina Ashton, Nuala Clooney, Rachael Colley, Matt Rowe, Heather &  Ivan Morison,  Marie Toseland and Jonathan Tratye. The table cloths were designed and printed by Daniel Fogarty and an audio accompaniment for the meal was recorded by Franziska Lantz. The menu’s and place settings were designed by Studio Dust.
  • Snafling - An evening of food and conversation developed with the artist Jonathan Trayte in response to his exhibition PolyCulture at The Tetley Leeds. The evening included readings by artists Kit Poulson, Niamh Riordan and writer Stephen Hepplestone.
  • The Devil’s Supper - an evening meal exploring the making and eating of food in the life and work of Anthony Burgess. The meal was devised in collaboration with Manchester chef Mary Ellen McTague. The artist Marie Toseland was commissioned to produce a new film work for the event and a series of readings were performed by Dr. Sam Ilingworth, Dr. Angelica Michelis and Susannah Worth alongside musical performances by the tenor Timothy Langston.
  • Kentucky Cuisine - an evening of food from the Deep South by street food chef Malachy O’Connor served in conjunction with film screenings by artists Jacob Cartwright and Nick Jordan

Amelda, Joseph and John

October 2016  Writing

A reading on the history of peanut butter, enemas and vegan sausages developed for Snafling at The Tetley Leeds. The reading forms the basis of a performance lecture around Dr. John Harvey Kellogg’s development of the Battle Creek Sanatorium Michigan.

Eating History

June 2016  Research

An AHRC funded cultural engagement project centred upon the Home Studies Collection, an archive of cookery books from the 1680s to the 1980s held at Manchester Metropolitan University’s Special Collections library. The project ran between April and June 2016 and entailed taking material from the collection to different community groups in Manchester, using the historical material as a trigger for conversation around contemporary questions of food and identity.

The Devil’s Supper - Anthony Burgess, autobiography and food.

March - May 2016  Curating

An exhibition at the Anthony Burgess Foundation Manchester. Bringing together writings, recipes, and interviews from the Foundation’s archive with a selection of cookery books and serving ware from Special Collections Manchester Metropolitan University the exhibition celebrated the food of Burgess’s north: the rich brown of strong tay, hot pot, and HP sauce. Funded by Arts Council England.


January 2014 - December 2015  Curating

A programme of film and video broadcasts exploring the notion of interruption within the everyday. Broadcasts were transmitted directly to an individual’s computer screen, visually interrupting the desktop. The broadcasts included both newly commissioned and existing artworks that resonated with the project theme of interruption. 


May 2014  Curating

An exhibition and film programme exploring Burgess’s use of the term Cacotopia. Participating artists included Ulf Aminde, Aline Bouvy & John Gillis, Franziska Lantz, Jen Lui, Rebecca Lennon, Elisabeth Molin, Heather & Ivan Morison & David Wojtowycz. Developed with funding from Arts Council England.

59.14 N 3.34 W

April 2012  Curating

A performative event on The Brough of Birsay, a small tidal island off of the west coast of mainland Orkney. The event was devised following a curatorial residency at The Erland Williamson Art Fellowship supported by The Orkney Cultural Fund. Participating artists included Sovay Berriman, Franziska Lantz & Matt Rowe.

Antonia Low, Der verlorene Raum, Kunstmuseum Bonn

2014  Writing

Catalogue essay accompanying Antonia Low’s solo exhibition on receipt of the Bonner Kunstpreis.

Speculative Strategies in Interdisciplinary Arts Practice

November 2014  Writing

Co-editor of the publication, scrutinising the methods, motives, practices and terms associated with interdisciplinary arts. The publication included essays by Brave New Alps (Bianca Elzenbaumer and Fabio Franz), Carol Brown, Mike Pearson, Jane Rendell, Victor Seidler, Becky Shaw and Jane Trowell, launching with a symposium at Birmingham School of Art


February 2014  Writing

Publication project exploring the Roman ritual of the Fas. With contributions from artists Matti Isan Blind, Kit Poulson, Marie Toseland, and choreographer Augusto Corrieri. The publication was designed by An Endless Supply and made with the support of Hospitalfield Arts, Scotland. A reading of the publication was given in the Roman galleries at Warrington Museum.

The mouth as threshold: A small eating

June & July 2013   Writing

A reading developed in response to Gertude Stein’s Tender Buttons exploring sounds in speech and digestion. The text was read at Hospitalfield Arts, Summer Open Weekend and Suppose a Symposium, Chelsea College of Art and Design. The text was printed in the publication accompanying the Suppose a Symposium project.


August 2011 - August 2012  Curating

Working in collaboration with theatre practitioner Swen Steinhauser a series of performance and installation works were staged in different spaces across Manchester and Salford providing minor interruptions to the everyday contexts of each chosen site. The series was launched with a performance by Edwina Ashton and subsequently supported the development of new works by Franziska Lantz, Giles Bailey, Salford Lids, Sian Robinson Davies, Amy Feneck & Antonia Low, culminating in a work by Quarantine Theatre Company. The project was funded by Arts Council England and supported by Salford University. 

Feeder Canal Sand Martin Colony, Foreground Projects.

July 2012   Writing

Catalogue essay accompanying Tue Greenfort’s public art commission for the Feeder Canal area of Bristol.

Art School Alternatives

October 2010  Research

Asymposium exploring alternative methods and approaches to contemporary art education at Liverpool John Moores University. The sympoisum was produced for Corridor8 and featured as part of the Liverpool Biennial 2010 programme. Speakers included Juan Cruz, Heath Bunting, Kate Rich, Department 21, Megan Wakefied, Islington Mill Art Academy, Terry Smith, The Drawing Exchange, Circa Projects, Derek Horton, Black Dogs, A Latento, No Fixed Abode, Disrupt Dominant Frequencies, Artmarket/Kunstfreund and Paul Rooney.

For St. Agnes, Graham Fagen, St. Agnes Park, Bristol.

July 2010  Writing

Catalogue essay accompanying Graham Fagen’s public art commission for St.Agnes Park, Bristol.

Traits of Sidney, Frith Street Gallery, London.

October 2010  Writing

A collaborative publication with the artist Daphne Wright detailing the research threads surrounding her solo show at Frith Street Gallery, London.

The Doers, The Drifters & The Dreamers

November 2010  Curating

A weekend festival of music, visual art and performance curated in response to Studs Terkel’s aural history project Working – People Talk About What They Do All Day and How They Feel About What They Do. The weekend included works by Ruth Beale, Cupola Bobber, Maurice Carlin, Sian Robinson Davies, Ruth Ewan, FORT, The Grubby Mitts, Claire Blundell Jones, Aiden Jolly, Juneau Projects, Peter Harrison, Phil Stanier, David Williams & UHC. The weekend was developed with funding from Arts Council England.