PAC Home Curatorial Grant: Driftingspace

driftingspace karst plymouth arts centreDriftingspace (Sally Hall & Jason Hirons) was awarded a PAC Home curatorial grant in April. They were awarded the grant after applying for financial support for their collaborative curatorial practice. The money was used to produce Textually Active: A Driftingspace Project held at Karst, Plymouth on Thursday 10 April. 

As the culmination of our short residency at Karst, we hosted Textually Active, an ad hoc arts event. This was the third Textually Active, following those at the Gallery At PCA, and Plymouth Athenaeum. The intention behind Textually Active is a night of shared ideas around the themes of Art, Text and Performance, with six artists each given 20 minutes to present some work, usually the artists test out a work in progress, or represent an existing work in a different context. Textually Active is nomadic – it is important that it has no fixed abode; we seek the space in the same way that we seek the artists, and we choose the artists for each event based on the venue.

After securing the Karst residency we put in a successful application for the PAC Home call for a curatorial bursary. As well as the money, we received a number of excellent support sessions with staff from Plymouth Arts Centre. These sessions covered everything from Marketing, Event Planning, and advice on funding – and all of them really helped us to get to grips with putting together the event in a very short period of time.

For the third Textually Active we wanted artists who could make use of the vast space that is Karst. Steven Paige kicked the evening off with the first of his three performances, three dialogues of different genres of performance and theatre. Next, things moved to the pit where Rosie King presented a fascinating performative lecture and discussion on privacy in the aftermath of the Snowden revelations on the NSA.Then Driftingspace presented an ad hoc overview of the week’s residency, showing some raw footage of our investigations, and giving an improvised reversioning of the room scan drawings we had started to create using telemetry gathered through apps on our iPhones and iPads.

This was followed by Steven presenting the second part in his trilogy, before we broke for drinks.

After the interval Tabatha Andrews presented Dual, three short performances playing with the binary possibilities of the voice. Steven’s final piece was followed by Holly Knowles, who showed his wonderfully complex line drawings; he finished a work he had been constructing for 6 months, and made a start on a new piece – all in 20 minutes! Finally, Exeter based artist Gabrielle Hoad showed her gorgeous film and sculptural pieces, reworked as a textual piece.

We had an amazing night, and we’re already looking forward to the next Textually Active that we’re hoping to have in place later this year: watch this space! We can’t thank PAC Home enough for their kind support; it made a real difference and we feel much more confident about taking the Textually Active project forward as a result.


Twitter: @driftingspace

PAC Home

PAC Home is a membership network for artists, curators and writers, who live and work in Plymouth and the wider region. It is an initiative by Plymouth Arts Centre, aiming to support and foster a strong visual arts sector by developing and raising engagement in contemporary art, supporting production through critical review and connection to a professional and global network. For further information email


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