The arrival of this little inventory of resources for creative researchers was every bit as anticipated and exciting as the arrival of a beaujolais nouveau.

Rather than fireworks, music and lots of wine, the arrival of SMUDGE SKITTLE – and no less importantly the publication of Undisciplining Dance in Nine Movements and Eight Stumbles (Cambridge Scholars Publishing 2018) – was celebrated with dance, speeches and a modicum of wine in the beautiful Gus Fisher Gallery.

Undisciplining Dance in Nine Movements and Eight Stumbles, edited by Alys Longley and Carol Brown from the Faculty of Creative Arts and Industries, brings together authors and artists from throughout the world, with a focus on contemporary performance research emerging from New Zealand and the Pacific. It looks really fascinating, but I was there for SMUDGE SKITTLE.

Alys Longley,

Alys Longley

It’s always satisfying to see a project come to fruition and Smudge Skittle emerged from Alys’s year as a 2017 CLeaR Fellow with the help of a grant from the Schuler Educational Enhancement and Development (SEED) Fund. In 2017, CLeaR (Centre for Learning and Research in Higher Education) had the annual theme ‘writing, writing everywhere’. The annual theme provides a focus for the CLeaR Fellows and for the allocation of SEED grants. Alys’s aim was to explore ways to help practice-based researchers meet the challenges of achieving writing that is both creative and academic.

The SMUDGE SKITTLE cards fanned to show the activities.

The smudge skittle cards

When I arrived at the Gallery, Alys was offering ‘card readings’ using the SMUDGE SKITTLE artist’s documentation cards. The cards ‘provide a short task that tangles artistic thinking with written reflection. These cards frame writing and knowing as playful, open-ended, idiosyncratic and relational.’

Find out more at the SMUDGE SKITTLE website. You can even play SMUDGE SKITTLE online.

You can also read more about Alys’s projects on our website and watch a video interview with her.

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