Pamela Crowe (b. 1974) is an artist and writer working across performance, text, movement, image and voice. Her work has been published by The Poetry Society, The Poetry Archive, Winchester Poetry Festival, Soanyway Magazine, Corridor8 and Spelt Magazine, exhibited and performed at Leeds Art Gallery, Hyde Park Art Club, Norman Rea Gallery University of York, Leeds City Museum, Winchester Poetry Festival, Leeds Playhouse and Leeds Summer Group Show, commissioned by Leeds 2023, Axisweb, 20-21 Visual Arts Centre, The Newbridge Project and 1623 Theatre Company, highly commended in the Winchester Poetry Prize, shortlisted for the Bridport Poetry Prize and longlisted in the National Poetry Competition. She is a winner of Poetry Archive Now 2022 and a member of the British Art Network. Her poetry book THE BELL TOWER is published with The Emma Press.
Pamela’s work explores voice and what it means to act, where acting is both a theatrical gesture and a point of action. Script, authorship, movement and stage feature. She makes work about the writing process, drawing on stage theory and the writings of Barthes, Foucault and Stanislavski to expand the boundaries of what an author and a dramatic text can be – and where, and how the text can be staged and performed. She uses movement, text, photography, video, sculpture, sound and performance to explore power dynamics, both in the artworks and in how she navigates the themes of femininity, physical strength, intimacy, movement, sexuality and gender within them. She is interested in active text where writing leads to speech, dialogue, movement and action and something is changed because of it.
The written work I produce is a text that forms a central framework or script to subsequent iterations in live, video and audio formats. These are all sculptural. The text is the first materialisation. All attempt Voice. I define Voice as any manifestation of a personal statement, feeling or presence. This iteration could be spoken, unspoken, unwritten, a movement or series of movements – articulated through any means. Crucially, I define Voice as something expressed and transmitted; it almost always has some urgency and necessity. A value. In my own practice, Voice also means the act of speaking.
When I repeat my written work out loud, whether live or recorded, I’m attempting to not perform the work. I’m attempting to locate the original inner voice with which I first heard or saw the words scroll in my head. Subsequent photographic, audio or video works are also attempts to depict these images or streams of consciousness. In this sense, I create a volume or series of work, I, II, III –
Some of my written works are a stream of consciousness, these pieces require few edits or revisits. They may be more successful. By stream of consciousness I suppose I mean spontaneous – but also my consciousness is, by habit, very author-ly.
Much of my written work sits within poetry and I’m happy to be included and asked to participate as a writer in this field. Sometimes I feel like I visit poetry and I’m grateful to those who welcome me. I think I’m still working out what people mean by poetry. I’m curious about abandoning, expanding or changing the term poetry. I may meet resistance to this.
As an artist speaking the words that I write, I’m interested in anchoring my authentic voice to the text, I want to avoid a performative voice – this is a work in progress. I’m interested in how I fail at this.
When I write, when I speak, when I’m with you – it should be me you experience. As close to. I accept that Stanislavski may be in there somehow.
To find her, you look for reference.