Book Arts

An exhibition hosted by Bower Ashton Library, Bristol, UK

Éilis Kirby (AKA EAK) A-I-R at Bower Ashton Library for IMPACT 12

1st July – 31st August 2022

Éilis Kirby, in her role as researcher for EAK Enterprises (the organisation that constitutes the personhood of Éilis Kirby, and includes EAK Press) is now in residence at Bower Ashton Library. As a former student of the Art College, EAK is proud to be declared summer AIR. This will be a trip down memory lane for our industrious researcher, as she first walked into the library 29 years ago, in the early years of her education in matters of seeing, thinking and making. Now she returns to remember and to see what’s new, bringing the past and the present into collision and forging the future. The residency will provide a space to observe and reflect, especially in the wake of an unprecedented couple of years. What does the world look like now? How do we navigate past, present and future? (And could EAK AIR be a radio or TV station, an airline or a sports shoe?)

This is part of an on-going, life-long research project into what it is to live in the world that we find ourselves in; how we position ourselves in this world in relation to other things; and expanded notions of the self as entangled and interconnected montage/assemblage/collage.

Embedded in the library with its wonderful collection of books and its traditional, linear methods of ordering, classifying and accessing knowledge acting as a starting point, EAK will combine a fascination with these systems with other approaches, relying on juxtaposition, chance, collapse, embodiment and intuition to seek out patterns, connections and different ways of knowing in order to offer alternative visions.

The views of, and proximity to, Ashton Court Park with its abundance of vegetal life and nonhuman creatures is a most pleasing setting for contemplation and perhaps some interspecies connection. Having a keenness for the discarded and overlooked, thinking through doing, and being an avid proponent of making-do, experimenting and improvising, Kirby will wander, observe, converse and collect looking for echoes, resonances and correspondences. Accumulations of objects, images and texts, may become artists’ books, collages, things, etc. that explore formal concerns, humour, pathos, absurdity, our relationship to the world around us, and challenge mainstream values and hierarchies.

EAK will be in residence at Bower Ashton Library from June to September, with an (possibly changing) exhibition of things to provoke and stimulate thought, and maybe conversation, in the library from 1st July – 31st August. Anyone interested in engaging in dialogue, walks, and solving the world’s problems, or just having a bit of fun and seeing the library, is welcome. Days in residence will generally be the second half of the week, but may include other days and weekends. Interested parties may propose visitations by DM @EAKPress on Instagram, or try and seek EAK out in the Library.

As part of the IMPACT 12 residency, EAK Press will be producing a small and modest gift for conference attendees / library visitors and will display the artworks made during her residency this September in one of the library vitrines.

Please check the opening hours for Bower Ashton Library before visiting. You can also follow the library’s Twitter feed.

UWE Bristol, City Campus at Bower Ashton, Kennel Lodge Road, Bristol BS3 2JT.