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Day One of Writer’s Residency

August 1, 2013

It’s the 1st August and day one of my residency at NeST art gallery in Barnard Castle. I was surprised on arrival to find that it is also gallery changeover day. The gallery is busy with artists hanging new work so we were offered the photography studio as a quieter venue for today’s workshop on ‘Poetry inspired by the Landscape.’
Having introduced ourselves and stated our favourite locations we spent a few minutes gathering words from the ether which conjured up these places for us. We then browsed a selection of tourist information leaflets noting down words and phrases which stood out for us.
The next stage of the word gathering process was to put these to one side to allow our brains to mull them over while reading aloud examples of poetry inspired by other landscapes.
The choice was a trio of poems written by three different poets about the same location:’Wuthering Heights’by Sylvia Plath, ‘Loud without the wind was roaring’ by Emily Bronte and ‘Wuthering Heights’ by Ted Hughes.
Having absorbed these individual responses to an environment similar to that found in parts of Teesdale, we then turned our attention to creating poetry which expressed our own thoughts and feelings about our chosen locations.
These were then shared and ideas for presentation discussed in preparation for inclusion in the 1000 Creations exhibition.
Next week’s workshop will focus on using the senses to evoke the atmosphere of a place. Writers will be invited to explore a range of locations in Barnard Castle itself to pick up on sensory detail for integration into written pieces.
To participate come along to NeST gallery, 25 Newgate, Barnard Castle, Co. Durham, DL12 8NG for 10a.m. on Thursday 8th August.

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