What to Submit to the Northern Spark edition of The Shantyquarian

The Shantyquarian is back! We're hand-printing another edition for the 2012 Northern Spark arts festival on Saturday, June 9th.

As before, all of the content for our broadside will be generated from online participants--this means you!

This time, we're playing games with you--surrealist writing games.  We're collecting texts generated in response to prompts from our Twitter account (tag your tweets with #shantyQ) and our online submission form. We'll chop up and arrange these individual texts into a unique assemblage, and distribute it to visitors on June 9th, 2012.

We’re looking for input from everyone—artists, writers, friends, admirers, stalkers, random internet surfers—anyone who’d like to have their words pulled from the ether and printed on an old-fashioned press.

Don't sweat the content. Follow our prompts to generate text. It's easy! We'll assemble all the collected texts into a whole.

Your contributions will be generated from prompts inspired by surrealist games, taking advantage of the immediacy and near randomness of the information on social networking sites like Twitter, and access to millions of unique minds full of strange and disparate ideas, separated by circumstance, geography, culture--to be brought together, rearranged and assembled into a new text.

Our prompts will be based on descriptions of games compiled in Alastair Brotchie's A Book of Surrealist Games. The editor, Mel Gooding, introduces us to the surrealists and their techniques:
[The surrealists'] brilliant investigations were conducted through...games, play, techniques of surprise, and methodologies of the fantastic...Playful procedures and systematic stratagems provoked keys to unlock the the door to the unconscious and to release the verbal and visual poetry of collective creativity...They borrowed children's games, invented techniques to exploit he unpredictable outcomes of chance and accident, and discovered new uses for automatism...They arbitrarily transformed innocent objects into magical images...
Surrealist games and procedures are intended to free words from the constraints of rational and discursive order, substituting chance and indeterminacy for premeditation and deliberation. Surrealism takes the logic and continuity of the dream to have a truly given significance, equaled only by the revelatory power of the unexpected analogy, the marvelous conjunction...
The following is a selection of surrealist games & techniques which we will draw upon to inspire your contributions:

Automatic Writing
Adopt a receptive state of mind & write without thinking about what you have written

Attempt to write from within an adopted state of mind. Write as someone else.

The Exquisite Corpse
One player provides part of a sentence and conceals it, another player provides another portion of the sentence and conceals it; etc. A new idea emerges from isolated components.

Questions and Answers
One player writes down a question and conceals it. Another player writes down an answer without knowledge of the question. Remarkable facts emerge.

One player writes a hypothetical statement beginning with 'if' or 'when' and conceals it. Another player writes a sentence in the conditional of future tense.

One player writes down a premise, a proposition beginning with 'All', and conceals it. Another player writes down the second premise and conceals it. A third player writes the conclusion, beginning with 'Therefore'.

A player writes down a statement or a question, the next player writes the opposite, phrase by phrase, according to any idea of opposite. The next player writes the opposite of that sentence; etc.

One Into Another
Two players each select an object. One player must describe his object using only properties of the first object.

Cut-Up Texts/Assemblage
Physically cut up or copy and paste a text (select words, phrases, or sentences). Be as random as you wish. Rearrange the pieces into a new text.

Directions for Use
Using the style and format of directions for use, apply them to items that do not require such instructions

Thought for the Day
You give answers to unexpected questions.

Dream Objects
Select an object from your dream that has qualities not usually associated with an analogous object in real life.

Personal symbols
Select an object or idea. Give it personal symbolic qualities, or qualities not traditionally associated with that object or idea.

Irrational Characteristics of Objects
Create a generic set of unusual questions that could be asked about objects. Select an object.  Answer those questions.

Objective Perception
At an undisclosed time, all players will be prompted to note what most strikingly impinges upon her senses.

New Proverbs, Superstitions, Myths
Create your own.

These games are easily played, adapted, and exploited through our new connectedness to information and each other, through the medium of the internet, social networking, and mobile devices. 

Follow @shantyquarian on twitter. Respond to our prompts by tagging your tweets with #shantyQ. Fill out any part of our online form and submit it. Repeat!

No comments:

Post a Comment