There were times when I thought of myself as a Canadian artist and that I might move to Canada. In some ways this trip is about re-visiting that hidden Canadian artist and re-engaging with the Canada’s unique artist-run network. When I searched my name on e-artexte (always a weird thing to do) I was surprised to find 15 entries. In preparation for this research trip, I sent ahead a package of printed documents about my art practice in the mail, which can contextualize these entries. I’m also bringing some hard copy fliers and reviews with me from my previous work in Canada as I plan to do some research about two Toronto galleries which were central to my emerging career, Mercer Union and YYZ, also the Western Front in Vancouver.
More specifically, for this residency, I’m planning to include some research about the late Canadian artist Noel Harding. We were friends in Toronto and also when he moved to Amsterdam. On the basis of this I may develop an imaginary written ‘dialogue’ with Noel, as a part of my larger one-year research project, The Naming. An essential element of The Naming is about challenging the nature of categorization and ‘naming’ within contemporary art practice. This research project will be an amazing opportunity to ask these questions in relation to Artexte’s collection.
Richard Layzell is a London-based artist affiliated to ResCen at Middlesex University. His work in performance, video and installation – and with industry and communities – has been recognised internationally.
From 1996 he developed a series of innovative residencies in industry, defining the role of the ‘visionaire’, with: AIT Plc, Promise, Chordiant International and Unilever. His development of the artist’s role in redefining corporate culture and community has subsequently been applied to a series of artworks and commissions in the public realm.
He is currently collaborating with Tania Koswycz on The Manifestation, a major new installation for galleries. He is the author of The Artists Directory, Live Art in Schools, Enhanced Performance and Cream Pages.
At the end of 2009 he was resident in Shanghai for the Visiting Arts Square Mile project, where he lived and worked in one defined square of the city. (full biography)