Tuesday, 28 February 2017

#ThreadandWord - An artist led walk by Elspeth Penfold

Setting the context for this walk.

This walk is now fully subscribed , please get in touch if you'd like to take part in future walks and I will add you to the mailing list.

Saturday, 25 February 2017

 #Thread and Word

An Artist Led Walk by Elspeth Penfold Sunday March 5th 2017 

1.00p.m. - 3.00p.m. 

Meet: Threads Exhibition, Espacio Gallery 
159 Bethnal Green Rd. E2 7DG
Finish: Leadenhall Market

It (art) consists not in showing the invisible, but rather showing the extent  to which the invisibility of the visible is invisible.”
‘(In)Visible Spaces of Equality’, Annette Krauss

As a part of the Threads exhibition we will walk along a route that will take us from the gallery to Leadenhall Market past some of the  artworks of Sculpture in the City, including the work of the Peruvian artist Lizi Sanchez, ‘Cadenetas’ . 

We will use sited readings of Cecilia Vicuña’s poem Word and Thread. Through participatory interventions along the walk, we will  openly and collaboratively celebrate the threads that bring us together.

image: Naya Eleftheriou , collage

With thanks to:

Jennifer Deakin-   Artist Photography
Judy Dermott -      Research, and writing: Women
                              Centred Modernism
Keith Grossmith-   Poem, ‘The Word’s the Thread’
Virginia Fitch -       Research and readings
Hazel Mountford-   Research and reading
Julia Riddiough -    Walking Mantra
Esperanza Gomez-Carrera - Performance Voices 
Naya Eleftheriou -  A Recital of Ithaca 
                               Performance Voices
Helen Peacock -     Performance What’s Left Behind
Jennifer Harkins -  Research
Sheelah Mahalath Bewley - Research
Veronika Marsh -  Performance  The Journey
Allan Struthers -   Performance ’Seen Not Heard:
                           The Choice of Listening to Objects’
Jill Rock -             Performance ‘Sprang’                                

Elspeth will be offering all walkers the opportunity to record the experience of  the walk through making knots in ropes which she will make for this walk .

“Wayfaring - threading our way through the tangled streets and spaces of London stopping to reflect with Threads and Words as we unravel knots at the sculptures on the way, rhyzomatic as we
meander from place to place free from linear fixities” 
Jill Rock 

A "Caligrama" of Cecilia Vicuña’s poem in Spanish. Designed following a circular walk from Espacio Gallery to Leadenhall Market. 
by Esperanza Gómez-Carrera

If you wish to find out more about the walks and my art practice please visit 
If you would like to take part in future walks please contact me,  elspethpenfold@yahoo.co.uk

Saturday, 11 February 2017

Preparing for #Word and Thread - on March 5th-

#Eliot#sculpture in the City#Espacio gallery#Walking with The Waste Land#Cecilia Vicuña#LiziSanchez,Cadenetas#Quipus#International Women's Day#Vivienne#Where's the Sense in It?

Thoughts that developed as a result of our field trip on February 9th.


 A walking field trip from Espacio Gallery on the Bethnal Green Rd. through Sculpture in the City at various locations ending at Leadenhall Market.

Participants: Veronika Marsh   (Linguist, and artist)
                     Virginia Fitch.     (Walking with The Waste Land)
                     Allan                    (Poet, writer , student of life)
                     Helen Peacock     (Artist, currently exploring wires and tensions)
                     Jill Rock               (Sculptor and performance artist)
                     Elspeth Penfold    (Artist, weaver, exploring walking as research)
I have invited participants on these walks to take a leap of faith with me as we are never too sure how the walk will evolve or who will turn up on the day. When questioned about the route I say that there is a heartfelt aim that we will somehow arrive at our destination.

This is all very difficult to explain, hence the leap of faith.The following explanation might be helpful: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gnteiRO-XfU

Perhaps one of the most important characteristics of the rhizome is that it always has multiple entryways. Likewise this walk has multiple entryways.


1. Threads an Exhibition at Espacio Gallery, including a piece of my own work "Quipu". 

Quipu was made during a residency at Sun Pier House in Chatham, last July from materials gathered during a walk organised with the Walking with The Waste Land group for  The Writing Buildings symposium at The University of Kent. 

It now seems clear that threads as a metaphor are looming large in this walk. 

2.  A second entry way is Palabra e Hilo, sited readings of a  poem by Cecilia Vicuña, Threaod and Word. Vicuña  is a Chilean Poet and a walker who weaves words. Like TS Eliot, Vicuña's writing is a stream of conscious thought with references to mythic ideas but hers are rooted in Andean culture rather than European. 

The fragmentary introduction of poetry readings from different sources ties in well with another entry which is:

3. International Women's month, celebrating the work of Sarah Lucas and Lizi Sanchez.
Kevin and Florian - Sarah Lucas

Lizi Sanchez is a Peruvian artist, whose work Cadenetas, paper chains, offers a different entry point to an engagement with the walk. 

 The fragmentary introduction of poetry readings and interventions as we walk plays with Cadenetas as we go spotting and discovering the copper chains installed along the site of Sculpture in the City.

 Sculpture in the City

 4.The exhibition Program of Sculpture in theCity offers  a further entry point. Artists and walkers have chosen to engage with sculptures along the route.

 4.Walking with The Waste Land is another entry point.
This is a walking group which is a part of Journeys with The Waste Land, at the Turner Contemporary gallery in Margate.

 The group  have been using walking as research to explore the poem as a contribution to the wider Research group for an exhibition opening at The Turner contemporary in 2018.

Sited readings of The Waste Land by TS Eliot will take place along the route from Espacio to Leadenhall Market.

These readings engage with site and open ideas connected with Palabra e Hilo

5.If you enjoy walking as research you might like to join a walk I am organising in Margate, on March 11th, as a part of POW Thanet , Let's Talk about Vivienne. 

Vivienne Haigh-Wood Eliot has been seen variously as a femme fatale who enticed Eliot into marriage or his muse without whom some of his most important work would never have been written.

for more about this: walk:http://www.powthanet.com/lets-talk-about-vivienne.html

So there we have it Rhizomes a useful tool to allow ourselves the freedom to engage creatively. 

Add caption

 These events are all threaded together by the people I have invited to participate in the walk from Espacio Gallery to Leadenhall Market. I am interested in people and what brings us together. I am delighted with the ideas and interventions that have already developed as a result of the field trips.

 Using walking as a research tool to develop ideas and bring people together to collaborate creatively is proving to be incredibly rewarding. The metaphor of the Rhizome allows us not to close down opportunities for discovery, chance encounters and ideas.

Thinking about Rhizones, Ropes and the knots made by participants walking on Thursday

I am looking forward to our walk on March 5th!

Our walk last Thursday was no exception.We were, in Ingold's words, wayfaring rather than transporting.

The ropes I make and give to participants in the walks to document the experience by making knots play with this concept of wayfaring.

"Every place, then , is a knot in the meshwork , and the threads from which it is traced is a line of wayfaring"- Walking Threads, Threading Walk"; Weaving and Entangling Deleuze and Ingold with Threads

Wednesday, 8 February 2017

Terminalia Festival of Psychogeography 

Exploring Boundaries and Monuments.     

A walk from Vauxhall Bus station on Thursday February 23rd

I was researching the Mythic Method and the essence of Modernity, which as I understand it does not mean returning to the past but giving an understanding to the present, when I was contacted about the Terminalia Festival. 

Through this walk and it’s connections with Terminus the Roman God who ruled over boundaries I hope to explore these ideas further.

“ Instead of narrative method, we may now use the mythic method. It is, I seriously believe, a step toward making the modern world possible for art.”
T.S. Eliot, from Ulysses, Order, and Myth (1923)

The mythic method  is  also connected to Eliot’s idea for allowing the audience to participate and workout the meaning of an artist’s work.

There is a wonderful exhibition on at Pallant House in Chichester exploring the Mythic Method :http://pallant.org.uk/exhibitions/current-exhibitions/main-galleries/the-mythic-method-classicism-in-british-art/the-mythic-method-classicism-in-british-art

For details about the Festival and this walk: http://terminaliafestival.org or check out my previous blog posting.

Monday, 6 February 2017

Exploring Boundaries and Monuments. 

Terminalia Festival of Psychogeographyhttp://terminaliafestival.org

I was recently contacted about the Terminalia Festival of Psychogeography by the walking network Women Who Walk. I am looking forward to taking part in the Festival , please let me know if you'd like to join me on this walk. 

"On 23 May 2006, following the passing by Parliament of the ‘Serious Organised Crime and Police Act’ prohibiting unauthorised demonstrations within a one kilometre radius of Parliament Square, the majority of Haw’s protest was removed. Taken literally, the edge of this exclusion zone bisects Tate Britain.”

 The Terminialia Festival, a one day festival on Thursday February 23rd celebrates Terminus, the Roman God who ruled over boundaries and whose statue was merely a stone or post stuck in the ground. In recognition of Terminus and the ritual of celebrating the Roman New Year which traditionally began on March 1st, the walk will focus on exploring the memorials and statues along the trajectory.

 We will observe how and what we choose to commemorate and celebrate through our public spaces. Each participant in the walk will receive a hand made rope which they can make knots in to record the experience of the walk. 

We will be walking at 11.00 am from Vauxhall bus station to Waterloo station via Tate Britain, the site of Mark Wallinger’s, "State Britain”in 2007.

We will then follow an exploratory walk  to Trafalgar Square and on to St Paul’s , ending at Waterloo Station. This should take a couple of hours allowing for a tea or coffee break en route. 

Following on from this walk, on the 25th of February, there will be a second walk in Seasalter near Whitstable, in Kent. On this walk we will walk to “ Mick’s post” where we will tie the ropes knotted on the London walk to Mick’s post in a symbolic ritual of the celebration of Terminus. Mick’s post is a white post in Seasalter which has been erected near the sea wall to indicate the boundary for the digging of bait in the estuary. 

Images from these walks will be posted on Twitter @womenwhowalknet @elspethpenfold, using #Terminalia. To find out more about my walking as research please visit my website blog:

 If you would like to attend either of these walks please contact me: elspethpenfold@yahoo.co.uk