11 May 2016


Heavily heady morning of rain and a humidity that causes my hair to rise up and rebel against any attempt at professionalism.

It’s the middle of May and that means intensive marking and supervising students preparing their practice-based dissertations for GradFest 2016. It’s a full week of moving image and performance works presented on stage, as installations and as film screenings. The students programme and design the event and bring in industry professionals to discuss ethics and working as freelance artists across media. This morning I’m meeting Ben and Dominic, who’re coming in to support our students in the edit suites as they finalise their projects. Then it’s a switch of gears back into administrative mode with this afternoon’s School plenary meeting where I can report on colleagues’ successes in grant-funding – especially in Archaeology & Anthropology and in Music – and we can think seriously about our School identity in advance of the appointment of a new Head later this Spring.

But everyday, no matter what my academic task and no matter how connected with archaeological questions, I am greeted by this wall near my flat. I love its self-help reminder that life is indeed short and the way that, recently, ‘foxy’ was changed to ‘foxx’, which reminds me of Redd Foxx in Sanford and Son, part of my own ‘media archaeology’ I suppose:

Today, visibility is low so there’s little view out towards the university. But the rain and the light draw attention to that dent in the car ahead. Cars round here tend to suffer from the tight bends and the overcrowding.




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