Tag Archives: Golden Threads

Container Ships

Ship in the Solent (Image: Oliver Sumner)

Ship in the Solent (Image: Oliver Sumner)

We have started a new blog, as an offshoot of this main Delta Arts blog, to collect references on the subject of containerised maritime trade. Have a look at http://intermodalflow.wordpress.com/

Delta Arts members have been researching material on this subject from interdisciplinary perspectives, including geography, law, international relations, economics, politics, and anthropology, as well as cultural references in art, film, and literature. For some time we have been exploring the idea of placing artists on a container ship passage between the UK and China, a project we have called Intermodal Flow.

Our idea is to develop Intermodal Flow as a mobile platform for artist exchange using passenger places available on container ships. Our vision is a combination of a site-specific residency, a collective-workshop, and an international artists’ think tank. It follows on from our experience of international artist fellowships in our 2010 project Golden Threads. Further updates on Intermodal Flow will be posted here.


Landing Place: the local in the international – engage International Conference 2012 Cardiff

Beirut: Golden Threads

engage International Conference 2012
Venues across Cardiff
6 & 7 November, fringe events on 5 November

Next week Oliver Sumner and Samar Maakaron will be representing Delta Arts at the engage conference in Cardiff. They will present an insight into Delta Arts’ new book on the Golden Threads series of artist-to-artist research fellowships. Golden Threads explored the social role for artists in Beirut, Copenhagen and London. It set out to challenge artists’ practices by placing the socially local concerns that informed them into different cultural contexts internationally. The resulting book records the collective discourse that took place between the artists, including the local concerns of social / participatory practices and the role of self-organised international networks.

A Double Book Launch yesterday at The Showroom, London

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We had an excellent evening at The Showroom yesterday, where we launched our Golden Threads book alongside Andrea Francke’s Invisible Spaces of Parenthood manual. The event began in The Showroom’s current exhibition The Grand Domestic Revolution GOES ON, and was interrupted by an interactive performance by Golden Threads fellowship artists Townley and Bradby. Brooms fitted with bicycle bells (in adult and child sizes) swept the guests upstairs for some Lebanese zaatar, a drink and a short Golden Threads discussion. Lawrence Bradby of Townley and Bradby talked about being an artist and parent, the visibility of children and parents in public space, and experiences of meeting artist families in Denmark through Golden Threads.

Launch of our Golden Threads book at the Showroom, London

Golden Threads (English edition)
Price: £4.95 plus p+p

Double Book Launch
24 October, 6.30–8.30pm

The Showroom
               63 Penfold Street 
London NW8 8PQ

We are looking forward to the launch of our new Golden Threads publication at the Showroom, alongside Andrea Francke’s Invisible Spaces of Parenthood manual during the Grand Domestic Revolution GOES ON.

The book, available in English and Arabic editions, relates to our 2010 Golden Threads fellowships between the UK, Lebanon and Denmark. It looks back on the practice-led research and collective discourse recorded during the four peer-to-peer fellowships.

Artists Hatem Imam, Karen Land Hansen, Emma Smith, and the duo Townley and Bradby researched the varying conditions for artists engaged in social and artist-educator practice in each location. The book includes a dialogue between Emma Smith and Oliver Sumner, contributions from the artists, quotes, project information and images.

Golden Threads was a collaboration between Delta Arts members, invited fellows and hosts: Marwa Arsanios and Mirene Arsanios (Beirut), Karen Land Hansen (Copenhagen), Hatem Imam (Beirut), Lars Mathisen (Copenhagen), Emma Smith (London), Oliver Sumner (Portsmouth), and the artist duo Townley and Bradby (Norwich). We received practical support and advice from Gasworks Gallery (London), SAIR (Sølyst, DK), 98weeks Research Project / Project Space (Beirut), and help from many organisations in each location. Golden Threads was supported by Arts Council England and the Danish Arts Council Committee for Visual Arts.

Golden Threads, Pub. Delta Arts, Eds. Emma Smith & Oliver Sumner,
Price £4.95 plus p+p
A5, 32 Pages, Cover: Colour, Interior: B+W
English edition: ISBN 978-0-9573438-0-1,
Litho print, available from Delta Arts
Arabic edition: ISBN 978-0-9573438-1-8,
Print on Demand, available soon via AND Publishing

Discussion: Golden Threads, Modern Art Oxford

Townley+Bradby, Golden Threads fellowship, Denmark, 2010

Townley+Bradby, Golden Threads fellowship, Denmark, 2010



Though increasingly familiar in the UK, what does it mean to be a socially engaged artist in another cultural context? Emma Smith and Oliver Sumner (of Delta Arts) unpack this and other questions addressed by our recent Golden Threads programme of artist research fellowships between London, Beirut and Copenhagen. We will be joined by artistic duo Townley and Bradby and artist/designer Samar Maakaron. Organised by Delta Arts in partnership with ARC.

Free, booking essential via MAO on 01865 813800. Event link:


Golden Threads in Beirut

Workshop at 98weeks, Beirut

Delta Arts member Emma Smith has recently returned from a three-week fellowship in Beirut (27 September – 16 October 2010), completing the Golden Threads fellowships for 2010. Golden Threads is Delta Arts’ international fellowship program that ran this year between Lebanon, Denmark and the UK, supported by the Arts Council England and the Danish Arts Council.

During her fellowship in Beirut Emma was supported by 98weeks. Hosted by artist Marwa Arsanios and Mirene Arsanios who co-direct 98weeks Emma’s visit included a number of artist and organisational meetings, an artist talk, performance event, and three-day workshop.

Emma met with a number of Lebanese artists / practitioners including Hatem Imam (Golden Threads fellow to the UK 2010), Kiki Bokassa, Ghassan Maasri, Vartan Avakian, Elias Maalouf, Ghassan Salhab, Alfred Tarazi, Dalia Khamissy, Souad Abdallah, Eyad Houssami, Masour Aziz and Maxime Hourani.

Organisational visits included the Arab Image Foundation, Sfeir Semler gallery, Zico House, Sanayeh House and Studio, Ashkal Alwan, Zoukak and the Beirut Art Centre.

During her stay Emma ran a three-day workshop at 98weeks called ‘Art Services: Cultural Production and Public Use’. This peer-to-peer workshop explored self-organisation, how practice is valued, where it is located, the role of the artist in society and how practitioners can contribute to change.

She also gave an artist talk and hosted a reading group at 98weeks, and hosted a performative event at Sanayeh House in collaboration with artist Lawrence Abu Hamden.

Discussion: Hatem Imam, Turner Contemporary

Droit House, Margate

Thursday 16 September, 6.30 – 8.30pm

Droit House with Tracey Emin commission 'I never stopped loving you'. Turner Contemporary. Image: Sebastian Sharples

Lebanon-based artist and designer Hatem Imam leads a professional development discussion for practitioners. Where do artists situate educator roles within their practice? And how might this vary between the UK and Beirut? This event is organised in partnership with ARC and Turner Contemporary. Part of the Golden Threads fellowship programme organised by the collective Delta Arts in association with Gasworks, London.

Booking and information via http://www.turnercontemporary.org/