Emma Cocker is a writer-artist based in Sheffield and Reader in Fine Art at Nottingham Trent University. Operating under the title Not Yet There, her research enquiry focuses on the process of artistic endeavour, alongside models of (art) practice and subjectivity that resist the pressure of a single, stable position by remaining wilfully unresolved. Cocker’s work unfolds restlessly along the threshold between writing/art. Whilst embracing the potential of the essayistic (as a tentative effort or trial), her writing includes experimental, performative and collaborative approaches to producing texts parallel to and as art practice. Cocker's recent writing has been published in Failure, 2010; Stillness in a Mobile World, 2010; Drawing a Hypothesis: Figures of Thought, 2011; Hyperdrawing: Beyond the Lines of Contemporary Art, 2012; Reading/Feeling (Affect), 2013; On Not Knowing: How Artists Think, 2013; and as a solo collection entitled The Yes of the No, 2016. She is currently a key-researcher on the project Choreo-graphic Figures: Deviations from the Line, with the artistic research findings published as an accompanying artists' book/research compendium, 2017.

Borrowed Itineraries and Retraced Steps

NIRVC RESEARCH SEMINAR
University of Nottingham, 30 April 2008, 4.30pm

Image: Stanley Brouwn. This Way Brouwn

In this presentation I am proposing to reflect on diverse practices which, in different ways, explore the performative model of wandering by following another (either in the present or from the past) or by following another’s instructions. I am interested in how such practices operate at a curious interstice between the conceptual paradigm of rule-based or instructional activity on the one hand or alternatively can be read through rather more psychologically inflected ideas around disorientation, depaysément and the desire for getting lost. I am interested in the tension as the ‘loss of responsibility’ or anti-subjective possibilities of working to a rule or an order also have the capacity to increase chance and uncertainty within an action, whilst the gesture of presenting a challenge to individual agency might paradoxically result in a reinforced awareness of individual embodiment and selfhood. Referring to a range of artists including Stanley Brouwn, Vito Acconci, Sophie Calle, Heather and Ivan Morison, Lucy Harrison, Tacita Dean ... my aim is to sketch out possible connections between surrealist practices and more recent interest in acts of wandering - in artistic practices from the late 1950s onwards and especially in connection to contemporary art. The presentation draws on a number of recently published essays which have explored some of these ideas including 'The Art of Misdirection' (2007), 'Desiring to be Led Astray' (2007) and the forthcoming 'Not Yet There: Endless searches and irresolvable quests' which will be published as part of Telling Stories (Cambridge Scholars Press, 2008/9)

Further information about the NIRVC programme click here


Recent presentations include:
* March 5, Anna Lovatt, (University of Nottingham), 'Self-Portraiture and De-Facement in Conceptual Art'
* April 23 : Ed Krcma, (University College, London), "Liquidity: Beuys, Drawing and 'Material Imagination'."
* April 30, Emma Cocker (Nottingham Trent University), 'The Art of Misdirection: Borrowed Itineraries and Retraced Steps'
* May 7 : Mark Godfrey, (Tate Gallery, London), 'Roni Horn's Icelandic Encyclopaedia'