As part of his international research project The Naming, artist Richard Layzell is working in and around LUX and Waterlow Park as our first resident Creative Ecologist.
The Naming is a research project challenging and questioning how, through categorization and naming, we distance ourselves from aspects of the natural world and the cultural world. Inspirational figures are Jane Jacobs, Arne Naess (who chained himself to Mardalsfossen waterfall in Norway in 1970 to prevent a dam being built), First Nations beliefs in general and especially the Mi’kmaq community in Nova Scotia and the ancient Greek philosopher Heraclitus. The work he is producing includes discussions, performances, ‘interventions’, audio recordings, video, photography, ‘imprints’ using the earliest form of printing known as Takuhon, and an ongoing body of creative writing. He is celebrating particular trees and the songs of particular birds, especially the pied butcherbird from Australia.
Richard Layzell works in performance, video and installation – and with industry and communities – has been recognised internationally.
He’s been commissioned by most of the major public galleries and museums across the UK and completed many international artist residencies. As an experienced facilitator he’s led creative workshops with people of all ages and backgrounds internationally.
His ground breaking interactive installation Tap Ruffle and Shave, commissioned by Glasgow Museums, toured to London, Manchester and Newcastle and was seen by 100,000 people.
He developed a series of innovative residencies in industry, defining the role of the visionaire, expanding the artist’s role in redefining corporate culture and the community of the workplace. He subsequently applied this experience in the cultural sector with an expanded socially engaged practice, working on ambitious projects with communities in Bristol, Swindon, Glasgow, Coventry, Colchester, Liverpool, London, Shanghai, and Perth (Australia), amongst others.
His current work The Naming is manifesting in many different forms and locations, including Ephesus (Turkey), Mardalsfossen (Norway), Nova Scotia, New Brunswick, Montreal, Vancouver, Skyros (Greece), London, Bristol, Colchester, Seoul, Sydney and Alice Springs.
He is a course leader in Fine Art at Wimbledon College of Arts, a Research Associate artist with ResCen at Middlesex University and the author of The Artists Directory, Live Art in Schools, Enhanced Performance and Cream Pages.