I am in the process of making a radio book having been commissioned by Jotta for a group exhibition in NYC, San Francisco and London.
Background to my Radio Book
The idea to make a book radio came along during a residency at the LV21 lightship with Jim Backhouse, we learned how to make AM radio’s on wood using copper pins from Colin Turner the ships radio operator. These were very arresting to look at and sparked off the idea to make a radio book by using copper nails instead of copper sheet which we had been doing in our own Radio Arts ‘transmitter’ workshops. The ‘Unbinding the Book’ commission came along and was perfect fit for the idea, as Jotta were looking for artists who want to re-imagine the book form and I am thrilled they commissioned it. The result I hope will be an uncanny object, the pages held shut by copper nails, connected by wires to form a transmitter circuit; transmitting the words therein in an eternal loop. It will no longer be conventionally shelved, rather the text awaits the listener who is tuned to the right frequency and will hear ‘Spiritual Radio’ a book published in 1925, which I had used passages from and was one of the inspirations for my Radio Mind installation, the book sets out cleric and radio enthusiast Archbishop FH du Vernet’s vision of the nascent technology, as a spiritually-charged electrical force capable of mediating human sensibilities and the transcendent will of God in a text that is by turns visionary and often absurd in the bathetic disjuncture between spiritual promise and quotidian reality. A unique edition of the book will be bound and converted into a working FM transmitter, broadcasting the recorded text which will be voiced by writer and publisher Mark Pilkington of Strange Attractor Press with Jim Backhouse providing an ambient soundtrack. More updates will follow as they happen.