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Sophia Burns gives us a peep at her diary as she watches Paul Scott’s sign poem for the first time…..

My first impressions after watching Paul’s poem Three Queens for the first time…. movement in space…I like the way Paul seems to stop in space… do I want to put a narrative? or do I prefer seeing a body in space creating movements that could lead in my case to some lines and colors on a paper or a canvas….. what is it we are trying to experience through this work ? is it a visual translation of a narrative? (…) …when I see Paul ….I see a living visual…..like a dancer…there is no trace…. a work on sensations… (…) I just read the translation of the poem they give on the University of Bristol website…and the story behind the poem….it is an historical piece and already a narrative emerges from the sensations……. (…) but I won’t let that stop the flow….. (…) is it about getting two worlds to collide and merge into a visual sensation? ….. (…) I was wondering if instead of a translation it could be the visual response to the poem…. OR it could be a visual statement of the Three Queens, from what I feel of Paul’s performance ….. but what if I preferred to feel & experience this poem than understand it?

3 June 2012

I approach the performance as a new artistic and visual language because there is the knowledge that Paul works with sign language, if I don’t know sign language and I’m watching this performance as I did when I was younger when I saw for the first time visual and concrete poetry. I didn’t understand but felt it was opening another space of expression through the body that was very close to words with or without narrative. As an abstract painter, a visual space passionate, I see myself enjoying the game of shapes in space creating rhythms….subject is accessory…only the experience I have of a new visual space matters….. With such a poem that is explicitly on a historical subject I might decide to deliberately not want to work with its meaning but work from the re-writing Paul has done by creating his poem. An hermeneutic…re-writing from one form to the next, instead of translating sign language into our comprehensible spoken language I decide to plunge into an unknown language emanating from the body…. … I just watched Paul’s poem for the 3rd time….I realise how precise and how physically involved he is, his arms and body seem to flow through his visual words. I’ll start using my pencils tomorrow to follow his flow and rhythm…I love the way his two arms cut space vertically…

4th of June

I just started using a pencil. I put the Three Queens by Paul Scott on and started following Paul’s body. How he is moving determines where my pencil goes. I had to stop every time my hand didn’t have the required time to follow Paul and start from where I had left. I only managed to get to the scene where he starts eating, or “she” starts eating……5 drawings that result from my first visual intake or response to visual poetry. Paul inhabits the performance, his body is giving me the attitude of this queen, I can see her slowly emerging from the lines I’m setting on the paper, and she’s funny…I realise this poem is going to be ironic….or at least that the character is a caricature. I was suddenly reminded of UBU the King by Alfred Jarry….the whole image became very surrealistic and I felt myself diving back into the fierce sense of caricature when art becomes a tool for re-writing history…..I already feel that this experience is going to open new visual horizons, merci Paul and merci Kyra