After the first 2 really good days at the project space, days 3 and 4 have been a bit more of a struggle. Maybe some people will come along to my open studio tomorrow and help me work things out!

My aim was to try and develop a short video piece using text from Thomas Browne and combining this with some footage I have downloaded from you tube.

The footage includes video of people who are purported to be benefit cheats (presumably filmed by spying neighbours), baby swallows, mouths open for food, and a video of a snake eating another snake.

When I project each separate bit of footage along with the text pieces in the space I like how they look, but making them into a single channel video piece is harder. My hope is that the Browne text will give an interesting reading to the footage and it not seem like a simplistic comparison of benefit cheats with snakes (for example), which is not my aim. The interesting thing about the footage of ‘benefit cheats’ is that they are just people walking around, shopping etc but it’s quite compelling to watch. I have excluded any videos where the people are doing ‘active’ things like dancing, karate etc or where horrible things happen such as someone falling off a mobility scooter and then getting up to walk.

So, I feel there is something interesting in the footage and in the words…but maybe they don’t work together. Or maybe it is just going to take a little bit longer. At the moment the text, which I will probably add as a voiceover, starts off okay (N.B. okay, not brilliant!) but then gradually disintegrates. I have pasted an extract below. I’m hoping for a brainwave overnight.

1. A solemn song to welcome in the swallow.

Though useless unto us,

and rather of molestation

we commonly refrain from killing Swallows

We esteem it unlucky to destroy them

These birds that were sacred unto houshold gods of the ancients,

and therefore were preserved,

and to the Rhodians, who had a solemn song to welcome in the swallow


Do not harbour Swallows in your Houses

Pythagoras enjoined

His advice notwithstanding, we do not contemn,

those who daily admit and cherish them.

For in his injunction a caution only is implied, do not entertain ungrateful and thankless persons,

Brazenly living off the labour of others
They fail to take responsibility for their own circumstances

Amelia Crouch



I stuck up the letters that I cut out yesterday for the phrase ‘Not to Harbour Swallows in our Houses.’ The result is quite visually busy – the texture on the letters is a manipulated image of some dead birds, although I don’t think you can tell this. I can’t decide if I like the busy-ness, and how it makes it take longer for the message to be read, or if this is distracting.

The letters are just cut out in cardboard and annoyingly kept falling off as double sided sticky tape and newly painted paint don’t bond well. So I resorted to using panel pins to help fix them too as I can’t bear the idea of going back tomorrow and them all being on the floor. So it will be an arse to uninstall, but I will worry about that on Thursday. I guess if I was going to show the work in an exhibition I would probably get cut vinyl lettering.

I spent quite a long time playing around with projecting images. It’s never dawned on me before how useful a projector can be for testing out works – location, scale etc – before actually installing them. I experimented with projecting various bits of film footage and text-animation that I have collected/created to see how this sits with the prints. I will work a bit more on editing time based stuff tomorrow. I have a TV, a projector, my laptop and a digital photo frame which I could use to show moving image. But I am not sure if I will make more of a show-reel of several short video/animations to be projected in sequence, or if I will locate them around the space , showing in different formats.

Amelia Crouch


VULGAR ERRORS RESIDENCY I spent my first full day at the Queen of Hungary yesterday and it’s a brilliant setting to work. I enjoyed looking out the window at the horses in the adjacent field who are my nearest company and have quite a calming effect. This and the lack of internet connection makes the place really conducive to slowing down, relaxing and experimenting with art work.
Yesterday I sat and planned for a while and then measured walls. I pinned up some of the print outs I had brought, combining quotes from Thomas Browne with quotes from newspapers. I painted a large red rectangle on one of the walls and cut out a lot of letters that I am going to stick to it. Today I am hoping to stick up the letters, draw another text work onto the wall and start doing some video editing.

Amelia Crouch


We are excited that our second selected residency starts tomorrow, with a conversation between artist Amelia Crouch and scientist / writer Hugh Aldersey-Williams. The basis of the residency is Thomas Browne’s Pseudodoxia Epidemica, commonly Vulgar Errors and I have been reading the text today in preparation. We are big Thomas Browne fans here at the Project Space, so it will be very interesting to hear the conversation between these two and also to see Amelia’s interpretation of the text through her own practice and interests.


I swept the Project Space floor, polished the wine glasses and everything.

Dominique Rey