The ABC in Sound Ensemble for The Other Room 35: Bob Cobbing A Celebration

THE ENSEMBLE: Tim Allen, Joanne Ashcroft, Richard Barrett, Leanne Bridgewater, Matt Dalby, Phil Davenport, James Davies, Ollie Evans, Patricia Farrell, Clive Fencott, Alan Halsey, Michael Haslam, Tom Jenks, Angela Keaton, Geraldine Monk, Maggie O’Sullivan, Holly Pester, Robert Sheppard, Adrian Slatcher, Chris Stephenson, Scott Thurston, Gareth Twose, Steven Waling, Steve Willey and Nigel Wood.

Visit Ubu at the LINK to hear letters d, p and t of the ABC in Sound.

The Other Room 35 takes place at The Castle Hotel, Oldham Street, Manchester, M2 4PD. Tuesday 23rd October 2012, 7.00 pm. FREE

All Sensation is Already Memory

A compilation of sound art, drone, improvisation, noise, spoken word, sound poetry and other sonic experiments, from experimental label OSG. Contributors were asked to respond to Henri Bergson: “…In truth, all sensation is already memory.” The release is compiled either to play as a continuous album, or in three separate LP length sections; tracks are numbered accordingly. Free download at

Includes Matt Dalby, Philip Davenport and lots more

A Map of You

Homeless people in Manchester are writing themselves into the public eye, creating ‘customised’ tourist postcards of Manchester, in collaboration with arts organisation arthur+martha. The postcards are currently exhibited in Bury Transport Museum as part of Bury Text Festival and can also be viewed at BBC Online website. Poems from the project will be shown on the BBC Big Screen in Manchester city centre and tweeted by advertising company LOVE.

a map of you postcards carry tiny stories, little snatches of homeless people’s lives. In the white space between the buildings, the stories appear, some stencilled, some handwritten, some self-explanatory, funny, dour, elusive. The cards are designed to bring attention to a group in society who are often overlooked, but have much to offer.

L, a homeless person in Bury, said: ‘People who suffer have knowledge.’ The skin of these writers is thin; through it they feel the world intensely and report with great vividness.  

The arthur+martha experimental arts organization works with people who are often pushed to the margins of society – older people in hospital, excluded school pupils, children with special needs and many others. The Bury Text Festival pioneers unusual and radical use of language – in this case, helping homeless people find opportunities for self-expression. International poets Geof Huth (USA) Steve Gaisson and Derek Beaulieu (both from Canada) are involved in the project, leading sessions as guest artists and helping to edit work. 

a map of you has been supported by Arts Council England, Bury MBC and The Lowry – and is working in partnership with The Big Issue in the North, The Red Door Housing Concern Centre, Brighter Futures at Bury Adult Learning Service, The Booth Centre and LOVE Creative.


Notes for Editors

A slideshow featuring a map of you is at BBC online:

A BBC Radio Manchester feature can be listened to at The a map of you postcards are exhibited as part of the Bury Text Festival at Bury Transport Museum until 26 May 2011.

To read more about the project please visit

For more information and to obtain free copies of limited edition concertina postcard packs of a map of you- contact project organiser Philip Davenport on 07951 233953 /

The Language Moment

Opening salvo of this year’s essential Text Festival in Bury and elsewhere.

Featuring Eiríkur Örn Norðdahl, Maggie O’Sullivan, Phil Minton and Ben Gwilliam & Phil Davenport

@ The Green Room, Manchester

Friday 15 April 2011

In a pre-festival partnership event with the Green Room, Manchester, the Text Festival presents an evening of virtuoso vocal performance and groundbreaking sound art.

Eiríkur Örn Norðdahl is an Icelandic poet and author of three novels. He works with performance and sound-poetry, and regularly appears at poetry and music festivals, as well as dabbling in the dark arts of the concrete. In the recent years he has explored the possibilities inherent in the European and North-American avant-garde traditions, and focused on disassembling language into its visual, social and linguistic units. Nothing can prepare you for the power and dexterity of his performance, the sonically richness of his sound poems, and his amazing control of his material. His huge contortions twist his mouth to stun the audience.

Phil Minton is a dramatic baritone with a free-form style of “extended techniques” that are extremely unsettling. His vocals often include the sounds of retching, burping, screaming, and gasping, as well as childlike muttering, whining, crying and deep-throated drones; he also has an ability to distort his vocal cords to produce two notes at once. Phil Minton’s voice occupies a category apart, as joyously accessible as it is radical.

For over thirty years, Maggie O’Sullivan has been one of the leading figures of British innovative poetry. An international performer and visual artist, she is committed to excavating language in all its multiple voices and tongues, known and unknown, in visceral gestures that collage and pulverization at the service of a rhythmic vortex.

Phil Davenport & Ben Gwilliam are artists engaged in collaborative practice across different artforms: Davenportthe poet and Gwilliam the sound artist merge experimental language through the infrathin processing of the silence between sounds.

The event will also feature specially commissioned sound art interventions in various Green Room Spaces.

Curated by:

Tony Trehy

Commissioned by:

Green Room

Ticket Prices:



Green Room

54-56 Whitworth St West

ManchesterM1 5WW
0161 615 0500

The stamp of approval

Tom Jenks and Phil Davenport caught stamping the Chinese ideogram, which reads SUSPICION, into Phil’s poem MY PAINTINGS ARE INVISIBLE which is part of The Other Room anthology 2009-10. The anthology also contains a CD insert of sound poetry by Matt Dalby and poems by the wonderful poets we’ve been lucky enough to put on this year. Purchase details will be up on the website in the next few days.

The Other Room Anthology 2009/10

A wonderful thing which is now going to press after finding the bugs in the proof.

Keep your eyes peeled.

Features readers from April 2009-Feb 2010: Tim Atktins, Phil Davenport, Lisa Samuels, Allen Fisher, Alex Davies, Matt Dalby, P. Inman, Tina Darragh, Sean Bonney, Frances Kruk, Craig Dworkin, Michael Haslam, James Davies, Tony Trehy, Nick Thurston, Sophie Robinson, Steve Waling, Rob Holloway, Holly Pester.

More details soon when it’s printed.

William Blake and the Naked Teaparty

The new issue of Ekleksographia online magazine ‘William Blake and the Naked Teaparty’ guest edited by Philip Davenport features textworks that emphasise the touch – handwrit and haptic – particularly pieces that consider emotional engagements, human space – that weird trace and corporate/military erasure of the handmade, the human touch, the not-digital. These qualities link into the alternative tradition of poetics – and to ‘outsider’ artists who are owed a debt by the experimenters (an IOU all the way back to Will Blake, he and the Mrs sitting on the lawn in London afternoons, naked, drinking tea).

Contributors: Alan Halsey, Anna MacGowan, The Atlas Group, Ben Gwilliam, Carol Watts, Carolyn Thompson, Darren Marsh, Dave Griffiths, David Tibet, Geof Huth, George Widener, Geraldine Monk, The Gingerbread Tree, Hainer Wormann, Harald Stoffers, Helmut Lemke, Holly Pester, James Davies, Jesse Glass, Jonathan Penton, Julia Grime, Kerry Morrison, Kirstie Gregory, Laurence Lane, Lee Patterson, Li E Chen, Liz Collini, Matt Dalby, Michael Wilson, Morry Carlin, Nick Blinko, Nico Vassilakis, Patricia Farrell, Rachael Elwell, Robert Grenier, Robert Sheppard, Sarah Sanders, Sean Bonney, Stephen Vincent, Steve Waling, Sue Arrowsmith, Todd Thorpe, Tony Lopez and Tony Trehy

The issue goes online 15th March 2010 and will be launched with a 24 hour ‘live’ online writing event by Sarah Sanders

Series Editor Jesse Glass; this issue designed by Jonathan Penton.


Speak is Code

If you’re in China, near the Jiao Tong Teahouse, catch up with Phil Davenport’s poetry/art exhibition,Speak is Code

Jiao Tong Teahouse 27-30 December 2009
Yao Bo, Philip Davenport, Wang Jun

Jiao Tong Teahouse is a mesh of conversations, meetings, deals made, gambling, gossip and over it all, parrots swing on their perches, aping the human noise. It is an intersection and into it the work of three artists is placed for Speak is Code. The works explore the space between us all, locate the holes in language and – as Davenport’s poem says – “The impasse between skin.”

Yao Bo, ceramicist and painter premieres a version of her continuing major work On Reading Beckett: a long text response to Beckett is handwritten in Chinese script onto manuscript paper. “I was murmur-reading Beckett, muttering to myself. The poem shot sunlight from faraway into my thoughts…” As counterpoint, a series of collapsed pots – like collapsed lungs – are placed onto each piece of paper. From some of the pots comes the sound of the piece being read aloud. Yao Bo’s work explores the delicate seams of identity – where we join and where we fall apart. “These pieces of pottery are like the organs of no-body. Some silent, some murmuring, some…”

My Paintings are Invisible by Philip Davenport is a poem sequence combining Chinese and Western alphabets. The work is dedicated to Hai Zi (1965-89) the Chinese poet. Alphabets of East and West entwine to make word pictures, ‘invisible paintings’, each given an imaginary colour. They are on translucent paper, scripted half in Chinese (by Chinese artists) and half in English. The two alphabets sometimes join, sometimes separate. These are ‘paintings’ of absence, images that never grow clear – and Hai Zi becomes a symbol for all who are missing, all that we cannot say.

(txt/work, Wang Jun 2009)

Wang Jun is an artist whose works balance meaning against nothing. His recent pieces cross-breed industrial processes with the landscapes of hanzi that fill his paintings. He crunches together the Tao Te Ching, Wiggenstein and postmodernity into mould-pressed misfits. He will install a bookshelf of unreadable materials in the teashop.

Exhibition curated by Philip Davenport, artist in residence 501 Artspace. Contributing artists to My Paintings are Invisible; Dan Ting, Deng Chuan, Mao Yan Yang, Pang Xuan, Wang Jun, Xu Guang Fu, Yan Yan, Zheng Li; translation Deng Chuan, Yan Yan and Zhong Na.