Appropriately, Amanda Loomes' sculpture Wishful Thinking? sits outside the Constitutional Club, wherein hangs a portrait of Margaret Thatcher.
Rise like Lions after slumber
In unvanquishable number
Shake your chains to earth like dew
Which in sleep had fallen on you –
Ye are many – they are few.
Percy Bysshe Shelley
from The Mask of Anarchy
If you make a revolution, make it for fun, don't make it in ghastly seriousness, don't do it in deadly earnest, do it for fun.
DH Lawrence from A Sane Revolution
(We Don’t Need This) Fascist Groove Thang
Heaven 17 from (We Don’t Need This) Fascist Groove Thang
I was there. In the ‘80s, I mean. Those were the days when we had hope. Unequivocal. Clear. Those were the days when slogans grabbed our hearts and minds and fit bodies and dragged us towards a future that would – inevitably – always – be post-punk, two-toned, new, romantic. Those were the days of slow-drunk nights and sweet-hung days, of listening to Dare all night and loving the no-guitar NUM explosions of working-class energies and Northern souls. I? I read Paul’s lemmings-off-a-cliff words and dived in. He made me want to write. He stopped me writing. Sometimes other people are so good they go beyond inspiration and become treacly, quicksanded mess.
I was there, too, in the ‘90s. But I had already started relicking, I’d already freed Mandela and had decided I’d probably done enough. Mortgage. Car. Reaction in ghastly seriousness.
After that, we didn’t know what to call the decades. They’d bamboozled us by then, by pretending to care about race and sexuality, and we didn’t know where to turn. No Marx no marks. When I say we, I mean I. When I say I, I mean we.
Now I’m here, in the Roaring ‘20s. I may not make the pre-war ‘30s. But it’s nice to see the material and the ideal coming together again.
Amanda Loomes is preoccupied by watching people at work. She listens to what people have to say about their worlds and builds their words into warm, thought provoking films. She graduated from the Royal College of Art in 2006. She has exhibited widely in the UK including Jerwood Space, London and as part of Brighton Festival with HOUSE and Photoworks. She has undertaken numerous commissions including the film Keepers for the National Trust. Her solo exhibition Formation Level at Aspex Gallery explored her former life as a Civil Engineer through the labour embedded in roads. During 2019 her landmark film installation The Custody Code toured to forests in the UK as part of The Forestry Commission's centenary celebrations. In 2020 she secured an online film commission with Fermynwoods. Combine mixed archive footage from the the steel industry in Corby with her own footage filmed at Ketton Cement Works. She has recently finished work on the soundtrack to the animation Close Knit working with sound artist Alison Carlier.
www.amandaloomes.net Instagram @amanda.loomes Twitter @AmandaLoomes
Kevin Acott is a writer, lecturer, whiskey lover, and Spurs sufferer. He’s a sort of left libertarian/sort of anarchist who feels strangely attracted to French chansons, Greenland and Joseph Conrad as he gets older. His publishing, blog and projects can be found at http://www.kevinacott.com/. Twitter @speranza6162 Instagram @speranza6162 Facebook Kev Acott
I am an artist and the curator for grove and groving. This blog is groving online, and records the artworks placed on the streets of Bury St Edmunds along with responses to the work by commissioned writers.