December 12, 2014
Stay Where You Are may have come to an end, but the work, we are pleased to say, is staying put for a little while longer. Over the course of this past year, Jem Finer, Lavinia Greenlaw, Jay Griffiths and Ben Rivers have explored the liberations, and limitations, afforded by their embrace of all things local. Ranging from politically engaged explorations of home to dream-like journeys through a filmmaker’s flat, and from a sequence of almost painfully lucid poems to an unfolding sequence of musical compositions, this website now stores the rich results of this project’s deceptively austere premise.
Each of our contributors has produced a coherent body of work. In keeping with the spirit of the brief, however, these texts and short films make the most of the ready-at-hand material: immediate environments, personal objects and momentary thoughts.
These works, therefore, are a record of change – a fact made beautifully apparent with the benefit of hindsight, each instalment in the four-stage calendar reflecting the season in which it was made. Finely aware of the minute grain of present-tense experience, but keeping the broad sweep of the seasons very much in view, each of our contributors has captured the cyclical nature of time. The works’ changing moods, visual and sonic textures, weathers and patterns of language reflect how the wider world, and our relationship to it, is always moving forward, even when it appears most still.
Some shared interests have emerged over the course of the year, as the contributors begin to react and respond to each other’s projects. Among these is the notion of home: a place – not always physical – of shelter, identity and belonging, but also danger, estrangement and sorrow. If Stay Where You Are has a home, it is surely, for the time being, here: this website, these works.
About, Ben Rivers
December 4, 2014
November 18, 2014
A selection of quotes from key thinkers relating to the themes of locality, self-reliance and simplicity explored in various ways throughout Stay Where You Are.
“The real voyage of discovery consists not in seeking new landscapes, but in seeing through other eyes.” – Marcel Proust
“[A]t the very same moment when it becomes possible to think in terms of the unity of terrestrial space, and the big multinational networks grow strong, the clamour of particularism rises; clamour from those who want to stay at home in peace, clamour from those who want to find a mother country.” – Marc Augé, Non-Places
“A stationary condition of capital and population implies no stationary state of human improvement. There would be as much scope as ever for all kinds of mental culture, and moral and social progress, as much room for improving the Art of Living, and much more likelihood of its being improved. All the mechanical inventions yet made have … enabled a greater population to live the same life of drudgery and imprisonment, and an increased number of manufacturers and others to make fortunes.” – John Stuart Mill, The Art of Living
“I promised myself I would live alone in a cabin for a few months. Cold, silence and solitude are conditions that tomorrow will become more valuable than gold. On an overpopulated, overheated and noisy planet, a forest cabin is an Eldorado. Over 900 miles to the south, China is humming with a billion and a half human beings running out of water, wood and space. Living in the forest next to the world’s largest reserve of fresh water is a luxury. One day, the Saudi oilmen, the Indian nouveaux riches and the Russian businessmen who drag their ennui around the marble halls of palaces will understand this. Then it will be time to go a step up in latitude to the tundra. Happiness will lie beyond the 60th parallel north.” – Sylvain Tesson, Consolations of the Forest
“When I am in the country, I wish to vegetate like the country. I am not for criticising hedgerows and black cattle. I go out of town in order to forget the town and all that is in it. There are those who for this purpose go to watering-places and carry the metropolis with them. I like more elbow-room and fewer encumbrances. I like solitude, when I
June 3, 2014
Find out more on the project
January 24, 2014
We are delighted to announce that Jem Finer, Lavinia Greenlaw, Jay Griffiths and Ben Rivers will be creating a series of new works over the course of 2014 as part of Stay Where You Are.