Emma Cocker is a writer-artist and Reader in Fine Art at Nottingham Trent University. Operating under the title Not Yet There, her research often addresses the endeavour of creative labour, focusing on models of (art) practice and subjectivity that resist or refuse the pressure of a single or stable position by remaining willfully unresolved. Not Yet There unfolds as an interdisciplinary, hybridized enquiry that operates restlessly along the threshold of writing/art, involving performative, collaborative and creative prose approaches to writing in dialogue with, parallel to and as art practice. Cocker's recent writing has been published in Failure, 2010; Stillness in a Mobile World, 2011; Drawing a Hypothesis: Figures of Thought, 2011; Hyperdrawing: Beyond the Lines of Contemporary Art, 2012; On Not Knowing: How Artists Think, 2013, and Reading/Feeling, 2013. The Yes of the No is Cocker's first collection of writing (Site Gallery, 2015). She is currently a key researcher within the project Choreo-graphic Figures: Deviations from the Line.

Saturday, 6 February 2016

Publication: A 16 Stage Lexicon on the Arc of Falling

‘The Italic I – A 16 Stage Lexicon on the Arc of Falling’, an article and artists’ pages by Emma Cocker and Clare Thornton, has been accepted for publication in a forthcoming special issue of Theatre, Dance and Performance Training (TDPT), on Showing and Writing Training, (ed.) Mary Paterson (publication date, 2016).

About the issue: This special issue of TDPT is concerned as much with form as it is with content, interested in the ways that discourse and dialogue about training affect not only training and its stated aims, but also the ways in which these methods and devices are accessed, remembered or reproduced. Questions posed by this issue include: What is the difference between what you do and how you talk about what you do? Who is unwelcome and how do they know? What remains unsaid? What remains undone? What gets undone? Would you say all this to someone you are training with? What kinds of discourses are (in)credible? What have you already assumed? What is impossible to explain?  What can only be known in retrospect? How does it feel? What kind of person is produced by this process and how will they talk? What is (in)substantial? What will change if we do things the same way we talk about them?  What will happen if we don’t? What will change if we don’t change anything that we’re doing right now? What is impossible to articulate in words? What are the secrets of your method? How do you know you belong somewhere? Who do you think you are talking to?

Below is an extract central artists' page from our article, ‘The Italic I – A 16 Stage Lexicon on the Arc of Falling’.

Sunday, 24 January 2016

Residency: Choreo-graphic Figures - Embodied Diagrams

Nikolaus Gansterer / Mariella  Greil / Emma Cocker and guests:
29 February - 12 March 2016

This Spring, the artistic research project Choreo-graphic Figures: Deviations from the Line by artist-performer Nikolaus Gansterer, choreographer-dancer Mariella Greil and writer-artist Emma Cocker stage an intensive residency laboratory in collaboration with TanzQuartier Wien. In dialogue with a team of international critical interlocutors including Alex Arteaga, Lilia Mestre, Werner Moebius, Jörg Piringer, Christine de Smedt and other guests, this research residency focuses on gesturing with and towards the experience of vitality within the process of live exploration, putting epistemologies, relational processes and the potentials of embodiment through diagrammatic practice under scrutiny. The Spring Lab will be open for the public on 11th March, 2016. All are cordially invited to join on 11th March, 2016, 17:00 - 20:00 for the Spring Lab Opening at the residency laboratory.
Admission free/ Please make a reservation (Max. 20 participants).

Lecture: Tuesday Talks - Whitworth/MMU

16 February
The Whitworth, Grand Hall
11am – 12.30pm, free, no booking necessary
Tuesday Talks

I have been invited to give a presentation as part of the Tuesday talks series at the Whitworth, Manchester. Tuesday Talks invites leading artists, thinkers and curators to explore the driving forces, influences and sources of inspiration within contemporary art. The Tuesday Talks series are a collaboration between the Whitworth and Manchester Metropolitan University.

Wednesday, 23 December 2015

Publication - The Creative Critic: Writing As/About Practice

I have been invited to contribute to the forthcoming publication The Creative Critic: Writing As/About Practice eds. Katja Hilevaara and Emily Orley.

This edited collection brings together a range of examples of how to write about one’s own (art)work in a creative yet academically rigorous way. In a world where practice-as-research is becoming increasingly recognised and valued, artistic-researchers are always looking for ways to discuss and analyse their own work without compromising the creative drive that inspired them in the first place. The collection will comprise of sample writings (which will be introduced and contextualised) by leading researcher-practitioners and emerging artists alike, which will serve as examples for students and independent practitioners interested in writing and thinking about their own work in a creative yet critical, alternative yet theoretically rigorous way.

Writing without Writing: Conversation as Material
My proposed contribution shares and elaborates a method of ‘writing without writing’ that I have developed through a number of practice-based collaborations, where conversation is conceived as both the site and the material for the construction of inter-subjective and immanent modes of linguistic sense-making. I propose to present examples (in the form of artists’ pages) from various collaborative projects, reflecting on the different ways that conversation-as-material functions therein as a means for producing writing as/about practice. Conversation-as-material involves the quest for a not-yet-known vocabulary emerging synchronous to the situation it seeks to articulate, formed through the co-production of a language rolled around in the mouth until it starts to yield or give. In this process, meaning does not exist prior to the event of utterance; rather, it is discovered (often retrospectively) through a dialogic process, moreover, through the transcription and distillation of recorded conversation towards an emergent poetics. 

Saturday, 19 December 2015

Project: Weaving Codes | Coding Weaves

I will be working in Dusseldorf from 25 – 28 January on the Weaving Codes | Coding Weaves project along with Alex Mclean, Ellen Harlizius-Klück, Dave Griffiths and Julian Rohrhuber.

The AHRC project Weaving Codes – Coding Weaves (Alex McLean, Ellen Harlizius-Klück, Dave Griffiths, Emma Cocker) will have their second residency at the IMM, presenting an overview of the project so far and exploring the connection of weaves and codes with the students. We want to explore (tablet-)weaving and live coding together, considering both looms and computers as algorithmic environments for creative work with pattern. The connection between computing and the Jacquard loom is well explored, but we want to go deeper to investigate traditional weaving for its digital nature, including the genesis of discrete mathematics in ancient textile technologies. Thus we like to connect to an alternative account of computer programming with its roots in arts and craft.

As part of this mini-workshop/residency I will be developing ideas for a series of research articles exploring Live Coding in relation to ideas of kairos (opportune timing) and mêtis (cunning or wily intelligence), as well as reflecting on the specific temporalities of live coding.