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CARE NOTES / WHO CARES?
HD video, 14 mins and symposium
2019

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I was invited by LU Arts at Loughborough University to be artist-in-residence for the 2018-19 academic year. The resulting film 'Care Notes' was exhibited in the campus gallery at Martin Hall. From the gallery handout:

"As part of the LU Arts Artist in Residency programme, artist Ian Nesbitt was invited to spend time at the University and develop new work that engages with the context of the campus, whether that be the physical space or the activity that goes on within it.

Ian’s film, ‘Care Notes’, takes the physical and metaphysical spaces of ‘the Loughborough Bubble’ as its context to loosely explore the ecologies of care laid out by Felix Guattari in his landmark volume ‘Three Ecologies’. The University functions on a careful matrix of care ranging from the student support services that are provided by the university, to the off-campus support for community initiatives via Action projects, to the care for physical aspects of the campus delivered by gardeners and arborists, and embodied in Anne-Marie Culhane’s Fruit Routes project. Via these three ‘on-site ecologies’, Ian has engaged with staff and students whose role involves some form of caring, and in doing so, seeks to shed light on much broader questions of what care might mean.
‘Care Notes’ explores the sites of interface between the personal, social, and environmental in the context of Loughborough University, via the physical act of walking around the campus boundary. The film uses these site-specific conversations with students and staff as a vehicle for talking about receiving and giving care and support.

As well as a literal peek into how ideas of care and support help campus life to function successfully, ideas rasied in the film, regarding what a body/community/society does or doesn't need from 'outside' to function successfully, also bring the B-R-E-X-I-T word to mind, very much at the front of everyones’ minds during the filmmaking process. The final section of the film draws on the work of artists Anne-Marie Culhane and John Newling, from whose book ‘Dear Nature’ the text is taken, to draw uneasy conclusions about where we find ourselves."

The 'Who Cares?' symposium took place alongside the gallery exhibition in October 2019.

As an amusing aside, of all the projects I have ever undertaken, this was the project with the least care given to it from a commissioning perspective, and, as a result, was the final nail in the coffin of my work as an artist working to commission in community settings.