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throwing a spider
out of the bathroom window
another runs in

Walk with me, talk with me, write haiku, transform and have afternoon tea with me!

Join me on the 9th of October during Cheltenham Literature Festival at Koj, Cheltenham’s premier ‘No Sushi’ Japanese restaurant and bar at 2pm.

DETAILS HERE: https://kojcheltenham.co.uk/events/2019/10/9/haiku

Then in the evening come to an exclusive (limited entry) stand up comedy & poetry open mic session with cocktails! Special performances from stand up Joshua Silk and a haiku led poetry set from me!

Be good to see you there!

Paul Conneally

Artist: Katsukawa Shuntei
Title: Defeat of the Earth Spider (Tsuchigumo)
Date:Japanese Edo Period


I’ve decided to not formally work with the wonderful 1620s House and Gardens at Donnington le Heath for various reasons but I am exploring further some of the ideas that came out of a visit and thoughtful discussion there with artist Ashokkumar D Mistry.

We spoke of poetry, knots, sigils, the power of shape, symmetry, asymmetry, cultures, subjugation, and joy.

Metaphysical concrete.

I’m sure that Ashok and I will work closely together as these moments slide between now, then, before and forward.

The image of the peacock is seen all around the 1620’s House and Garden, predominantly in reproduction, in modern artefacts as seen here atop the toilet signage.

The peacock comes with many meanings depending which culture it’s found in and it’s found in many, from its indigenous settings and wider afield in appropriation.

I’m thinking at the moment of its alchemical significance. The peacock as a colorful symbol of transformation. The alchemy peacock might be envisioned in our moments of feeling defeated, moments of depression like the Phoenix the image of the peacock held in our mind gives us hope of regeneration, hope that we too can rise from the flames of despair. Whilst being an ego imbued image, celebrating the swagger of ‘the peacock’ it also is symbolic of the death of ego and then rebirth into a new time of illumination and spiritually. Here it points the way to the toilet, a place perhaps too of relief and transformation, who hasn’t left the toilet, the restroom changed somehow?

We find the peacock again in the centre of the 1620s House and Garden’s low, knott like maze .. a short twisting journey’s end, a goal.

all dressed up
and ready to impress
maple leaves and oak

Paul Conneally
September 27th 2019


Easter Wings by George Herbert

Found this great example of metaphysical concrete poetry by George Herbert as I prepare for some work with artist Ashokkumar D Mistry in the 1620s House and Garden at Donnington Le Heath in North West Leicestershire.

In its original published form it’s published at ninety degrees to the norm so as to look like butterfly wings whereas in most modern publications it’s published the same as way as other poetry, other texts, so losing its butterflyness.

I’m off up to the 1620s house later this morning to meet up with Ashok as we further plan a forthcoming piece together, a workshop looking at developing new ways of engaging with and interpreting the house and grounds.


Millree Hughes is seen here with legendary filmmaker Nick Zedd at the opening of our Involuntary México show in Metro Hidalgo, México City. It’s so good to see Nick there along with many from México City’s vibrant art world, metro workers, art lovers and commuters. Some of them I’m sure fall into all those categories.

It’s been said to me on more than one occasion that the Involuntary Movement is against the art world, that we undermine the skill of real artists by displaying bits of decaying crap, spills, damp patches, signs, the sounds of spin dryers and the like as though they were paintings, sculptures and music. I really don’t mind that they think that. That they think that speaks more of what the involuntary concept is about than perhaps myself, Millree Hughes, Aldo Flores and others involved with the Involuntary Movement ever could.

Nick Zedd (pictured on the right next to Millree above) coined the term Cinema of Transgression in 1985 to describe a loose-knit group of like-minded filmmakers and artists using shock value and black humor in their work. I’m not sure you could say that in general the work and ideas of the Involuntary Movement is shocking (though some might be) but there is a sense of playfulness and dark humour underpinning many of the ideas, actions and shows produced by the movement. Maybe we do transgress when we suggest that there are things out in our streets that aren’t art but could easily be mistaken for art and that might act as mediators between us, our everyday sometimes banal surroundings and other worlds, otherly thoughts, art histories, dance, the spirit world, baby doll nighties, neon lights, poetry, fine art, pornography, crochet, crap TV and more…



Paul Conneally
September 17th 2019

Now go read Nick Zedd’s ‘Cinema Of Transgression Manifesto


the city moves on
the sweat of workers
smoking mirrors

I’m at the dentist’s later today. I’ll be thinking as the drill buzzes of how impossible it seemed after my heart attack, actually even before, that I would be having a show with my friend of forty years NYC based artist Millree Hughes and my new friend the master Méxican artist and curator Aldo Flores.

I might record the sound as an Involuntary Music piece.