Emma Cocker is a writer-artist based in Sheffield and Associate Professor in Fine Art at Nottingham Trent University. Operating under the title Not Yet There, Cocker's research focuses on the process of artistic exploration and the performing of ‘thinking-in-action’ emerging therein; on models of (art) practice and subjectivity that resist the pressure of a single, stable position by remaining wilfully unresolved. Her mode of working unfolds restlessly along the threshold between writing/art, including 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; Choreo-graphic Figures: Deviations from the Line, 2017; The Creative Critic: Writing as/about Practice, and as a solo collection entitled The Yes of the No, 2016.

Dislocate, Japan

Working in collaboration with Katie Doubleday from the Open City project, a 'performative' paper has been accepted as part of the Dislocate festival in Japan,  September 2008. Click here for more information about the Dislocate festival. This part of my research in collaboration with the project Open City has also just received a 'Grants for the Arts Award' from the Arts Council which will enable us to travel to Japan and use the time as a key phase of research and development of ideas relating to 'Interrogating New Contexts and Methods for Public Participation in Site Specific projects'. Bringing together shared elements of my research with those of Open City, this research phase will enable us to examine three main aspects of our different practices:
* Specific areas of focus such as disorientation, threshold, flow
* The use of Instructions/invitations/propositions (in different textual and verbal format)
* Interrogating Context: examining the impact of cultural context, location and individual positionality in relation to these various ideas.
Image: observing stillness/different temporalities/research

Dislocate, International Festival for Art, Technology and Locality
September 2008 Yokohama, Japan
Dislocate questions our notions of place and location in the face of perpetual motion through multifaceted environments. The velocity of this passage is accelerated through new technologies, but as a result how does this impact upon our encounter with place and our attempt to communicate this to elsewhere? Through an exhibition, symposium and workshop series Dislocate will examine this encounter and communication, taking a journey through surrounding spaces andexploring our transient connections.Propelled through so many spaces with such momentum, mobility brings freedoms but also responsibilities. While in this state of passage how do we decide which spaces to engage with and what is our dialogue with them? Considering the locations we constantly carry with us, the interaction between the internal/external, virtual/physical, real/imaginary, our locatedness is multiple, fragmentary and in constant flux. Nomadic in structure the festival will focus upon our kinetic force through these various intersecting sites. Employing transitions by foot, bike and public transportation Dislocate will form an expedition into the diverse routes of the city and its hidden spaces, while questioning our relation to the ground beneath our feet. In this state of transit does our mode of transport isolate us from that which we travel through? Is there a destination? And how do we know when we have arrived?

As part of this specific phase of research we are interested in moments of slowness, stillness, obstruction and blockage. Slowness is often presented as antithetical to the velocity, mobility, speed, and freedom proposed by new technologies and the various accelerated modes in which we are encouraged to engage with the world. Slowness has in some senses been deemed as an outmoded or anachronistic form of temporality, as fastness and efficiency have become the privileged terms. Slowness is seen as a glitch in the system, an unwanted delay or moment of ‘poor connection’ during which things cannot progress as expected. Alternatively, slowness has been reclaimed as part of a resistant ‘counter-culture’ as a way of challenging the enforced and increased pace that things (including individuals) are required to ‘perform’, where accelerated and increasingly virtual modes of existence are seen as contributing to a sense of dislocation, disembodiment and loss of located-ness. Here, slowness is connected to the politics of the ‘slow movement’, where individuals have begun to ‘opt out’ of the system and ‘return’, perhaps nostalgically, to a slower pace of life.

We are, however, interested in exploring how slowness, stillness, obstruction and blockage operate within ‘the system’, and are perhaps as much a part of the city space and various technological infrastructures as speed, velocity and accelerated temporalities. We are interested in recuperating a value for these ideas, drawing attention to the potential within existing moments of slowness, stillness, obstruction and blockage in both the city and other systems; and creating opportunities for others to create their own spaces, gaps and pauses. Drawing on our different positions of ‘investigation led research’ we would like to present ideas and examples relating to this phase of research where slowness, stillness, obstruction and blockage have been used critically as a means through which to create points of anchor and location, or in order to affect a psychological shift in the way that space is encountered and understood

We want to explore the use of i-pod technology in order to create collective synchronised actions relating to slowness, stillness, obstruction and blockage. We are interested in how a synchronised group action in the public realm not only creates a moment of rupture or public spectacle that becomes witnessed by other publics, but how it might be possible to interrogate specific and at times conflicting ideas within the action itself – which become experienced by the individual participant. This specific work/research proposes to explore the threshold between the physically experienced and conceptually imagined; between what is publicly witnessed and what is individually felt. We want to test how spoken word and instruction make it possible for different ideas and propositions to explored within the act of stillness itself, in order to invite physical, conceptual and imaginative engagement with the work. We want to explore notions of agency, authority and intention within the act of stillness. Through the use of the i-pods and spoken text, we propose to interrogate how the act of ‘being still’ can shift in meaning as it moves from or between different positions.