Audio: What it is to be an Artist

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Linda J: To devise stories, errr and monologues or dialogues, or, and then, err to, to show it to an audience.

Isaac: Yeah.

Woman 1: And for the audience to errrm, think about it, discuss and be errm more…more what?

Jim: Erm, Enlightened?

Linda J: Enlightened, very good. SAFE, that was amazing. We had young people who were social work students. I though that was fascinating, absolutely fascinating that they had no idea of, of what, I mean we sent it up, we made it satirical and absurd to be gagged erm, with red tape on stage. But that made a huge impression, a visual impression.

Jim: When I came here I just thought it was an experience every Friday, integrating, experimenting, thinking, doing and then, we got the audience.

Isaac: Yeah.

Jim: Errm, and that is integral to being an artist in this set up, that you have an audience and what is also integral to it, is the quality of the people who support us, like yourself. But not just you…

Linda J: No. designers, costume.

Jim: The designers, the costumers…

Linda J: Lighting.

Jim: All of it, I, I couldn’t believe it when they turned up and, and it was high quality stuff.

Linda J: And that makes a huge difference, so its not like going…

Vicky: The roll of the artist in society is wider and bigger, because I’m interested in the social politics so the err, the how err things effect us and what the issues are, either for me or in society. And errm for errm that if we purely have the intellect that is changing society it will sort of run untrammelled over things making only decisions which are logical, but it is important to have imaginative decisions to work, to imagine the worst case scenarios, to imagine the very very best and present that, without it actually having to happen too. So that the, errm, I errm, Spare Tyre for me, has given me the ability to explore social politics.
Anita: The stimulus, even if your doing something individual, of having other people in the company somehow sets up an incredible energy and vibe and imagination. So that its like being in a church where everyone’s saying the same prayer and the energy, and it’s the energy that comes to make it so creative.

Cordelia: So the function of art doing more than telling it like is there is no such thing to me. Telling something like it is fully and completely and absolutely with your whole being is the highest form art there can possibly be. And to do that with other people, when other people come together, we were discussing this, something magical happens. So you might have an assumption of what its going to be like but when you actually come together as a group its amazing. And for me the joy of this is in being with other people, creating something with others, and being, living in the moment and to me its very much telling it like it is.

Sieska: To enliven, and errm to give it insights offering different perspectives.

Isaac: Yeah.

Linda: I think that’s sort of what Cordelia’s saying, is that you know, is there a reality you know? What is? We’ve all got a different perspective, we’re all looking at you guys from a different point of view and we’re all interpreting something different so I kind of, you know I can see common ground here. I just come because it’s a laugh.

Fay: I like acting because I want to act and I want to change my character, and doing that I’m somebody else. That’s me at that particular time, that’s the way I see acting, I’m not Fay anymore, while I’m acting I’m somebody else. But this is my way of saying it.

Isaac: Yeah absolutely.

Fay: Coz that’s it, that me.

Alma: For me its more than telling it as it is it allows, it gives me the opportunity to explore different sides of me that I have kept suppressed and I feel freer to do it within an environment where I will feel safe.

Millie: Its like If I were sitting down with a headscarf on, a walking stick sitting there people watching me and think “oh look at that poor old dear, shall I help her up?” blah blah blah. Coz they assume. But im gonna take the scarf off, throw away the stick and get up and do a boogie or go down a pole or whatever im gonna do, and they’re ya know, that’s so different to what people want to see, it’s the opposite, it’s the imagination. And I think as well as I said its like you can live a lie obviously, because acting is lying really, your not being yourself are you?

Isaac: Absolutely.

Mille: You’re playing a different role.

Man 1: Absolutely.

About this audio

Spare Tyre's Company of Artists aged 60+ were asked to think about the following quote in the context of their work with Spare Tyre:

The function of art is to do more than tell it like it is-it’s to imagine what is possible.

- Bell Hooks

This is a recording of what they said.