Confirmation of My Sins, Zachery Longboy, 1995
In July 2020, Conal McStravick spoke to Zachery Longboy about his work Confirmation of My Sins (1995), how he developed his video and performance practice in the 1990s as a self-identified HIV-positive First Nations FAG, the role of artist’s video and performance in documenting and exposing his experiences and feelings around individual and collective traumas past and present in indigenous life and living presently as an indigenous fag with chronic conditions. This included his contribution as coordinator of the First Nations Video Access Program at Video Inn/ VIVO Media Art Centre, Vancouver, the Vtape Aboriginal Digital Video Access Project, Toronto and Full Circle First Nations Performance, Vancouver.
Interview with Zachery Longboy, Vancouver, Canada, July 2020
Conal: I encountered your work in 2016, when I first visited Canada to give a presentation on Stuart Marshall at Concordia, Montreal and to do further research on AIDS video activism in Toronto and New York. I’ve been interested since then as to how in the early 90s, you opened up debates surrounding indigenous rights through artist’s video and at the same time how you came out in your work as a gay, positive man who is First Nations or a ‘First Nations FAG’ as you put it..
To briefly describe those works they were often video montages of original footage of landscapes, found footage and audio from the news media archive concerning indigenous rights issues and the increasing news coverage of historical human rights abuses concerning indigenous rights, performances that you made combining performance to camera, ritual and native symbols, singing and drumming, images and sound from Hollywood Westerns and images and objects stereotyping and commodifying indigenous culture, with testimonies from your indigenous contemporaries and family members. Through your own experiences, which we’ll go into in more detail, these works speak to exposing erased histories and to social justice as well as to video as a practice of decolonization.
I thought it would be a good opportunity, especially at the moment of the pandemic to talk to you about coloniality and decolonial practices in video in dialogue with the practices of the 1980s and 1990s in the context of the women’s health movement, the AIDS crisis and crip practices, in terms of the coronavirus pandemic and who it most impacts. And now, in light of the Black Lives Matter uprisings and ongoing indigenous rights campaigning , video as part of a process of acknowledging and examining the wider pandemics of racism, poverty and inequality that the artists in this programme acknowledge; plus the continuing histories of British colonialism, the slave trade and the Black Atlantic but also the continuing histories of indigenous lives in Canada as part of these linked histories, by featuring your work and the work of Cree artist Kent Monkman.
In the UK in the last decade there’s been a renewed focus on BAME art practices of the 1980s and 1990s and this programme features the work of UK artists Evan Ifekoya and Jay Bernard, who are of African and Afro-Caribbean heritage and whose work reflects upon continuities with these practices. In the case of Jay Bernard this links the archives of the New Cross fire in 1981 in the context of the Grenfell fire in 2017 and a renewal of far-right politics not least through ‘hostile environment’ government policies. The hostile environment was the name given by Theresa May, the former UK Prime Minister when she was Home Secretary to a very draconian and instrumental set of policies which dehumanizes British citizens particularly Afro-Caribbean citizens who have been stripped of their legal right to remain in the UK, denies them their basic human rights like the right to work and receive healthcare and thereafter seeks to detain and deport these people.
In the context of Picturing A Pandemic it seemed like a pertinent time to think about your work in relation to some of the work that I’ve seen since 2016 from UK artists, that could unpack decolonial art practice in the UK and Canada that at the same time acknowledges their linked colonial histories and continuities.
Maybe to begin you can talk a bit about how your practice developed through the 1980s and into the 1990s and the work you did to distribute, promote and open out access to and participation in indigenous video practices?
Zachery: I mean, I never really thought of ‘my practice’ as much as I thought of it as stories, or as ways to tell the story of myself.
I know that some of the work is political because of its nature —race and sexuality— but, I’ve never really thought of it as an attack that way. Personally, I liked that you framed the project around artists who stage liberations, in the sense that I like having control over my work.
I was part of the First Nations Video Access Program at Video Inn, Vancouver (Now VIVO Media Arts Centre) in the 1990s. I was coordinator of the project and the goal was to have people tell their stories in a safe space and to give people the basic training to do so. I was also part of the Vtape Aboriginal Digital Video Access Project to bring together indigenous video tapes to build a database of different artists and their work and I was active in Full Circle First Nations Performance, which is a performance company, but which also did Full Circle Video Program.
So, I’ve always been active in the community and trying to get access to tell their stories.
Conal: I have a sense from looking at some of the Vtape Aboriginal Digital Video Access Project, that the collected works result from different kinds of activity: documentary, or short film made for TV, or artist’s video even. Was there a sense in which you were trying to diversify the audiences for this work not just in terms of collecting the work but making sure that it was distributed across platforms and through different kinds of media.
Zachery: For me, starting in 1993 or ’94, it was the beginning of APTN, the Aboriginal People’s Television Network based in Winnipeg, Manitoba and they were looking for a lot of content. So, there was a lot of appetite from schools and communities wanting to learn more about indigenous people.
Conal: In terms of the role of video in Vancouver and Canada, Video Inn, was the first video organization in Canada to my knowledge. Was that scene around Video Inn something you were conscious of before you started making video yourself?
Zachery: No, I started video art school, it was a class I took, and I enjoyed it. I originally went for drawing, more traditional stuff and then I got pulled into video as I was interested in images
Right now I’m doing video with my cell phone as I‘ve gone through some health issues with Parkinson’s and it’s really helped me to continue working.
Conal: It’s quite a popular tool for artists now.
Zachery: I was without video for quite some time then another artist, Paul Wong, talked about how he was using his cellphone and I’ve continued to work that way.
Conal: Did you watch a lot of TV growing up? Maybe it’s more of a US phenomenon but I’ve spoken to other AIDS video artists and video activists of your generation, who speak of being the first generation of saturation TV and hence media representation becoming a key concern in their work.
Zachery: Not so much video and television, more theatre.
Conal; … Obviously, that makes more sense given your performance practice… Was theater something that you grew up around or were active in, in anyway? Youth theatre, or…?
Zachery: When I was a small child, maybe only five years old, my stepsister brought me down from Merritt which is a small town in the BC interior, to Vancouver, to see Beckett.
I didn’t understand it but just the theatrics of the whole event was something that I was interested in, the simplicity of it was something that I really caught onto.
Conal: Oh wow… how amazing! Did your performances come first or did you develop both performance and video at the same time?
Zachery: The drawings came first, then the writing and then I animated the drawings.
Conal: …Then the performance and video.
Do you think in a way that the creative process gave you a space to talk about and to find a language for things that Canadian society as a whole was struggling to name and identify in terms of the treatment of Canada’s First Nations.
Zachery: I was trying to find a language for myself to describe what was happening to me as a native man, a gay native man, an HIV positive native man and I’m still trying to find as a native man with Parkinson’s. I was trying to find a way to make sense of all of that.
Conal: I’ve been watching some of your works again over the weekend. These include
From Another Time Comes One (Into a new time becomes a brother…) (1990), Water into Fire (1993) and finally Confirmations of My Sins (1995) which is being screened for Picturing A Pandemic.
To go back into the history of the Residential Schools System in Canada and what’s known as the ‘Sixties Scoop,’ when First Nations children including yourself, were taken from their families to be educated and fostered or adopted… Now, since indigenous people campaigned for the Truth and Reconciliation Committee (sitting between 2008-2015) it’s clearly expressed that there was ‘a cultural genocide’ that took place in Canada on top of centuries of violent subjugation, including the Indian Act of 1876, that established a reservations system that continues to underfund health and education.
For example in works like From Another Time Comes One (Into a new time becomes a brother…) you combine news reports on Canada’s human rights abuses towards indigenous people with gathered testimonies from those who were removed from their families decades before, as a kind of gathering of evidence, but also, forming an audience and witness to much more widely shared traumatic experiences than had previously been admitted to.
Was that history something that was understood by you in terms of your own history and in the context of your own accumulated life experience? If not, in terms of the circumstances of your removal from your indigenous family and your fostering to a White Canadian family, when did it become obvious to you that something bigger had taken place, something shared for generations by other indigenous people?
Zachery: It was somewhat like peeling the skin of an onion. The outer core was what I was told had happened to me compared to what it was that had actually really happened. So, the video was really a way of trying to find that safe space to bring together all the different opinions and thoughts about what had happened.
Conal: I’m sure this is still painful, but can we share what you discovered in terms of what happened to your biological family and your people?
Zachery: I’m from the Sayisi-Dene people who lived south of Churchill, Manitoba. What happened with us was that in Autumn 1956 a plane flew into our village, scooped everybody up, moved them over to Churchill to a rocky barren place without any equipment, support or any means to survive, leaving the people unprepared for Winter and within a little over a decade the tribe were half gone.
Conal: Do you mean that those people died?
Zachery: Yeah, it was a mass extermination.
Conal: It wasn’t just a cultural genocide, it was genocide.
Zachery: …and it’s not something that we ever were taught in school when I was living as a foster child in Merritt, Interior British Columbia. I had no real connection with the native kids there. In my last show I stated that I have never really understood where my place is. My whole art career or art making has been trying to find that space, trying to find that place where I fit comfortably.
Conal: I have some, admittedly basic knowledge of these histories, but just hearing the extent of the violence in terms of your own community, I’m genuinely, genuinely appalled.
Do you know what happened to your parents? Did your adoptive parents have any knowledge of their whereabouts?
Zachery: I met my mother and my family when I was 26. The damage had been done, as far as their not understanding where I was coming from or me not understanding where they were coming from. There’s so much anger and other garbage and emotion that my mother had had to deal with, through residential school, through losing her children. There were all those kinds of layers.
I brought my own layers like wanting to know who my father was and stuff that was difficult to talk about. There was a lot of damage and I really tried not to fall into that pit of regurgitating that but it’s something that’s always going to be there, that’s part of my history.
Conal: And I suppose there is a way in which you perform this in the work. There’s the sense in which you’re searching in the work, the camera often searches the landscape. It’s both this immersive experience, but for me, it bears anxieties as well, there’s that sense in which you need to belong and you don’t know where you belong there’s disorientation, ambivalence and alienation.
In Confirmation of My Sins, one sees the landscape, and then one sees this litany of images of racial stereotyping and the commodification of First Nations identities. And then you hear this mantra: ‘I’m sorry, I’m sorry, I’m sorry.” And at once it’s redolent of the apology that you yourself lacked at that time, but also of your own internalized sense of dislocation, and simultaneously wanting to atone for your own dislocation and internalized guilt and homophobia.
It feels like a very powerful moment because it deals very directly with this particular ambivalence and rupture and whilst your experiences are a particularly traumatic one, I think this also speaks to wider constituencies of the complexity of inheritance and taking on identities, coming out and trying to search for new horizons or understand where we belong or how we begin to deal with generalized homophobia or intolerance. I suppose the theatre of your practice within this creative situation and by extension the dissemination of your video almost becomes a home for particularly difficult emotions and experiences.
You see this through a lot of feminist artwork of the 70s, you see video I think becoming a powerful tool for female artists, LGBT+ identified people and people of colour also.
As an artist did you have a sense of some of these uses for video, particularly these previous histories, had you engaged with feminist video stuff, or various kinds of developing lesbian or gay video content?
Zachery: Not really, my search at the time I was making video was very much native or aboriginal oriented. The search for being gay was an easy search, something I’d worn confidently my whole life. But my search for my Aboriginal identity has not been easy, I’ve had different costumes. I see the performance part of the work as communion like, to put on. a role, the play a character, or a thought.
Conal: That’s interesting as Evan Ifekoya, whose work is being screened alongside your work describes their piece in terms of ‘rituals of communion,’ dealing with a reparative space as a space of activism to my mind. Were your earliest performances at art school?
Zachery: When I went to art school I thought, ‘…this is great.’ A lot of creativity, nothing was holding me back. I was fortunate that my instructor at the time was Sara Diamond (Former ECIAD tutor and President Emerita of OCADU, Toronto). I was having some problems in my first year trying to find my way. I was exploring different technologies and having problems finding venues to show my work. I was getting caught up in drawing and Sara said to me, do you want to try video? That emotional support, and I went for it.
Conal: That’s really important I think, I try to remember that when I’m teaching now.
I remember at art school I felt inhibited to begin with when it came to using video.
If you didn’t own a video camera you could only make video when you had the technology available. Of course, you could sign up to borrow cameras, but it didn’t feel very organic at first. Then to edit you had to book onto a computer in the editing suite where you had to negotiate quite big personalities and the politics of the room just to be there. It’s something to be remembered in terms of ‘owning the means of production,’ also acknowledges the politics of production therein and for better or worse who ‘owns’ the space…
I remember finally I made this one piece and the tutor who looked at it spent the whole tutorial criticizing it technically, when that’s never really been my focus or interest. I say this partly because it’s so different now that you can make every element on your phone.
Just to return to the 1980s, I guess video came with different set of possibilities to film because it was not only was it relatively easy to make, but it could also quickly appear on TV screens. Through the 1980s and into the 1990s in the UK (with Channel 4) and Canada (with public access cable television) there were ways in which artists could produce video works which through television could have a much larger audience.
With public service announcement works like Living Tree made in 1993 for the Second Decade as part of the Toronto Living With AIDS television series produced for and by positive artists and cultural workers for the HIV/AIDS community by artists Michael Balser, and Andy Fabo, you briefly made that switch and this led your work to a much wider audience. What was the experience like at that time of going from making performance work and video works for relatively small audiences to making works for much wider dissemination?
Zachery: I had met Andy Fabo and Michael Balser briefly a couple of years beforehand when they had come to Vancouver to show their work at the Video Inn. For Living Tree, it was interesting to produce a video with two or three cameras and a crew, it was something that I had not really done before or since, as I tend to collect images and then sew them together. It was a learning curve. There was a lot more scrutiny on content, however, making public service announcements like Living Tree was great as we were creating something to help the community.
Conal: It’s not to be underestimated that coming out and simultaneously coming out as positive was a very politicized act at that time. Did you find the wider community supportive?
Zachery: It was the sort of thing that once it happened everybody knew. It was politicized but it’s the only way I could live. I couldn’t pretend. It was in my nature as someone trying to express myself. I’m a pretty open book.
Conal: Just to briefly describe Living Tree and your subsequent commentary on the work in Positive Men, a 1995 Living with AIDS documentary, like your earlier performance work you use AZT medication bottles as a material and a metaphor in your work. In Living Tree there are blue screen collaged images of a tree and native people, the bottle is presented on your hand and changing text appears on the label that says: ‘You’ ‘Me’ ‘Responsibility’ ‘Reality.’
Then in Positive Men you speak to the work in terms of ancestral knowledge and healing.
You create an analogy as to how ancestral knowledge is acquired and then respectfully shared and you use this as an analogy and a metaphor for HIV and AIDS medication during a time when PWAs (people with AIDS) and treatment activists were campaigning for wider and cheaper treatment access.
I find it a moving reflection not just because it speaks to the politics of the AIDS crisis in the 1990s but it speaks to the collective responsibility of HIV and AIDS in the present moment and by virtue of speaking about treatment, of coronavirus, and who will have access to medications as and when they become available, or, who will take responsibility now.
Assuming collective responsibility speaks to a much more ethically rich way to imagine a shared future. You only have to see these stories about the US buying up months’ worth of coronavirus medications to see how there is a coloniality written into the logic of how medications are being shared, or not as the case may be.
Zachery: For us, here in Canada the numbers of HIV cases were high in indigenous communities, but these communities weren’t getting access to drugs. It wasn’t until more recently that they had proper access. I think I got medications earlier because I was within the gay community. It’s still pretty much the same.
Conal: For indigenous healthcare as a whole, not just HIV medication?
Zachery: The reserve system is not set up for any kind of healthcare, it’s really quite poor in those communities. It’s hard to explain a reserve, it’s like they’re communities and they’re homes, but it’s like a lockdown area in the sense that there’s so many rules and regulations of what they can and can’t do just for basic survival.
When you lack the government you need to look after your reserve, self-determination is the only route out and there’s not a lot of self-determination right now. We’re still ruled by the Indian Act, still restrained by the Indian Act, even today.
Conal: How do you think people could achieve more autonomy then, do you think they should secede from those powers? Do you think that the Canadian government would be prepared to give power away, that way?
Zachery: I hope so but I also don’t think so. It’s hard to imagine, it’s so wrapped up in so many different emotions. I find it hard to find the right words, I feel lost at times in trying to speak about what I do, it feels dis-connected, also now with the Parkinson’s.
Conal: I think you speak very well and it sounds very joined up and connected to me. It’s worth speaking about Kent Monkman’s Future Nations, which will show alongside your work. It’s a speculative fiction set in the context of a future North American pandemic, where two young, two-spirit, First Nations protagonists hone their survival skills: coming out, sex work, falling in love and surviving the pandemics on the reserve and in the city in their respective ways.
The tables of so-called civilization are turned as the erstwhile ‘colonial-settlers’ in their urban pandemic struggle to survive whilst the First Nations characters have the skillset to survive possibly even thrive as white supremacy fragments.
It holds open the possibility for an end to capitalism, colonial-imperialism and the policing of gender non-conforming and two-spirit bodies. I think it’s all the more powerful because it does so by staging histories of land appropriation, of smallpox epidemics and of food shortages, so it simultaneously holds open the possibility of talking about tragedy and collective trauma at the same time that this formulates witness, hope and change, not just a history of endless subordination.
Zachery: I hope change is possible. The only way to do it is to continue telling our stories.
Conal: I wonder if you think that culture, or cultural activism, call it what you will, helped to widen the conversation about First Nation experience from the 1980s and 1990s onwards?
Zachery: There seems to be a rejuvenation of indigenous culture, of beading and quill work. When I was at art school some of those images and practices were considered ‘craft fair,’ whereas now they’re thought of more as art.
Conal: What has your experience of Coronavirus been and how has living with HIV informed living with Parkinson’s?
Zachery: Coronavirus has been interesting in the sense that I had become a recluse already because of Parkinson’s. I live at home; it’s a small space and I reach out to different curators and different organizations that I work with. That’s how I ‘get out’ but I’ve really embraced the lifestyle of being separated.
Conal: It has its benefits for creative people, right?
Zachery: It’s been interesting as to how people within the community have reacted to it. I’ve really embraced the change and we can hear the animals now from the park, where before with all the traffic we couldn’t hear that.
Conal: I was a little sad when I went cycling and after getting used very quickly to having the roads to myself and there being so little traffic all the traffic crept back again.
Zachery: Yeah, that’s happening here…
With the Parkinson’s disease I’m so still so new to what’s happening… I can’t perform anymore, or at least I can’t perform the way I used to. There’s been a little bit of reckoning that way, but I think what’s gotten me through has been the work with my camera phone.
I’m really enjoying that and drawing again. So, I’ve managed to find another outlet and it’s about trying to tell stories, truthfully, about where I’m at. Trying to express that in as little as fifteen seconds is the challenge.
Conal: Do you think if you hadn’t had HIV, your experience of Parkinson’s would be different? Do you think that you’ve developed survival strategies through having HIV as long as you have had it?
Zachery: Oh absolutely, yes, it would be different. I was much more prepared to hear what’s going to going to happen. I’m much more prepared to accept what’s happening. I think if I hadn’t had the whole experience of that calamity, I wouldn’t be so focused. I’ve got a focus that’s pretty strong that I can manoeuvre through. There was a lot to cope with during that initial HIV diagnosis and it’s not over as I’m still taking medications. In the 1980s and 1990s we were trying to get to a cure or to manage it and now it’s more about managing it.
Conal: This is another issue in which I think the notion of collective responsibility is an important one. That is with regard to people living with chronic illnesses who also are positive, because many of our LGBT plus elders are positive and/or have more than one chronic condition. I suppose it opens up a conversation in terms of how to support the wider community in terms of how they’re living. I suppose maybe in a way during Coronavirus because a lot more of us have spent more time online it gives us an opportunity to speak more, but also to reflect more in terms of how best to support one another.
Zachery: In the last two or three months, there has been a lot more community
on the web. That has its drawbacks, of course, but there’s been a lot more interaction.
I have my Parkinson’s community and my gay community, my indigenous community and each one is more vocal right now.
Conal: Do you think that there is better representation of First Nations lives
across the media and the visual arts? In the UK, particularly in terms of minority representation there are still access issues in terms of how and by whom things are made, how and by whom these are written, commissioned and so on?
Zachery: I think it’s getting better but there’s definitely more that needs to be done.
In terms of my own work and how it gets out there’s a lot more opportunity now. But I know other filmmakers who make film projects that talk about not having the same kind of artistic control over their subject.
My stuff is so small, I make it, so I don’t have those issues. It just gets out there.
Conal: That’s partly why I like showing your work next to Kent Monkman because his work is so spectacular and he does that so deliberately, he does that well even. He very much instrumentalizes dominant mainstream media representations.
When he’s performing in drag as Miss Chief Eagle-Testickle, with live performance or video, it’s got this very polished presentation, it feels like TV. However, it’s interesting contrasting that with your early work that’s quite deliberately low-fi, it’s done with a certain economy of means and I think this sits well with other artists in the programme like Evan Ifekoya.
It also reminds me, Richard Fung was interviewed for the screening of Chinese Characters for Picturing A Pandemic and he talked about the difference it made at that time to have access to video compared to film, which required more apparatus, a projector and a projectionist and so on. Whereas video required a TV (which many people had) and a VHS player (which anyone could operate). So, in terms of distribution it was much easier to disseminate.
Zachery: So, in terms of when I was screening with indigenous communities, it was easier to screen video than to screen film.
Conal: What sort of screenings did you do? How did that work travel through the indigenous communities?
Zachery: It was part of Full Circle and Video Inn, where we went to indigenous communities to do theatrical performance work, but we also screened video art. It was interesting, it was received really well, people were generally interested to hear about different tribes and communities.
Conal: Did you ever do workshops, or did you just show finished work?
Zachery: I did some but I’m just not that good at that. I’m not good at instructing.
Conal: Turning to Confirmation of my Sins, your 1995 video that features in Picturing A Pandemic I wonder if you could just speak specifically to that work. I’m interested to share recollections as to how you came to make it and the choice to centre the autobiographical elements, especially when you interview your adoptive mother.
Zachery: I was being a bit of a bastard. It was a bit of a rant.
There was so much around being native, how you had to go back to the roots of your community and that you weren’t a true native unless you grasped those roots. But for me, I was not in that situation. I didn’t know anything about my background. No one was gonna tell me. No one could tell me. No one from the government could tell me any information. So how was I supposed to go back to the roots truthfully, when it felt like my roots only went back five minutes? This was the premise of how I went about it and the ‘sin’ was that I was raised by Dorothy and the ‘sin’ was that she was my mother and that was my community, that was that I knew.
I wanted to bring attention to those of us that didn’t have tribal upbringing, that we were just as equal. It wasn’t our fault that this is the situation. I wanted to bring
some light to that and not to be ashamed of not having indigenous upbringing.
Conal: That’s what I think is really powerful; this sense of divesting yourself of guilt as a decolonial tool. It feels quite tender as well in terms of how you’re speaking to your mom and how she’s portrayed. Like there seems to be a lot of affection towards her in it.
Zachery: She was my mother and that was a lot for my birth mother to understand, at 26, when meeting my real family. I couldn’t take all that history and just dump it. I had to somehow work with it, and they, both sides of my family, both sides of my identity needed to be strong in order to move forward.
Hence this subtext of, ‘I’m sorry, I’m really sorry this this bothers you… Sorry I don’t have my indigenous background and I don’t speak my language.’ And the constant bashing of oneself, when you don’t have this basic knowledge. It was a nice way to kind of encapsulate all those feelings around my identity.
I’m much more confident being indigenous now than I was at that point and even though I haven’t learned traditional stuff I still have much more power in my feelings towards being indigenous.
Conal: For me in a way, there’s a common thread through the works that I’ve chosen because it shows how LGBTQIA artists and thinkers who work at the intersection of race, sexuality and gender have found communion, purpose, self-determination or ways of re-expressing themselves through their work.
Do you think you would have been able to achieve that same sense without your practice.
Zachery: I think that the art practices really helped me to focus, to de-clutter or clarify
information that’s coming out. It doesn’t mean that you can usher away trauma or painful experience but you can definitely re-instrumentalize it and use it as a tool.
Conal: I just wanted to ask you about identifying as a First Nations fag, was that important to you? To use the word ‘fag’ along First Nations especially?
Zachery: Yeah, being a bastard! There was a lot of backlash about calling myself a fag. I thought that there was a smoothing of language. I liked the roughness of the word.
Conal: Well, First Nations fag sounds really good for a start… it’s pleasingly alliterative of course but I suppose in the context of the foregrounding of two-spirit culture that deliberately using gay or fag acknowledges the rupture in your own indigenous identity and heritage.
Zachery: There’s an over-romanticism about two-spirit identity. I don’t want to devalue it because a lot of people are followers of that identity, I don’t want to deny them the space to be that. I felt that it was a way of re-telling the story of fags. I didn’t want my history to be over-written to have the corners smoothed off. I like the edgy part to being gay and now it’s something that I feel comfortable with.
Conal: …My I think we’ve managed to cover quite a lot! You know, it’s been very valuable for me to have an opportunity to talk to you about the other artists in this particular programme.
But mostly, beginning to understand the emotional depth and complexity of your work and where it’s come from and where it’s going to is really valuable to the project as a whole. I think there’s a lot of extraordinary insights and you’ve been extraordinarily generous in sharing your experiences in terms of situating your work in ways that opens out this work and relates more widely to the project and to the individual works of the featured artists.
So, thank you so much Zachery, it’s been a real privilege.