Collective Action In The Form Of Collective Gesture with Helen Cammock


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CAMP is a residential arts facility in the French Pyrenees. It's a place where great art is made, new movements are formed, new ideas are explored and groundbreaking people are nurtured. CAMP is located in Aulus les Bains, the last village before the France/Spain Pyrenean frontier chain. The location is spectacular - we are nestled at 750m above sea level, surrounded by snowcapped peaks over 3000m high, ancient forests and cascading waterfalls. There are eagles, lammergeiers, vultures, ibex and bears. Walk out of the residency, and within ten minutes you are completely alone in one of the most beautiful mountain landscapes in Europe. Aulus les Bains is also a spa village - there are hot water springs, and a thermal spa in the village to take advantage of the healing and relaxing properties of the water.
Workshop dates: 03/08/2022 - 08/08/2022
What does COLLECTIVE mean? Does it mean all experience must be shared OR does it mean that a collective agreement to act can incorporate different experience, action and gesture - and still have shared meaning?

This workshop aims to produce a series of shared gestures - or a collective tableau of gesture - that can be photographed, filmed or drawn by the group, forming a collective work. What is significant is that the final project evolves through the group workshop process which will be discursive, experiential and ask participants to respond to the proposition - bringing themselves and their studio practice to the process.

The ideas and work will build over 5 days of workshops and will involve small group work, pair work and individual exercises. People will be asked to think about the role of image, text and the embodiment of gesture (which will include some activities that require the use of the body).

Helen Cammock works across film, photography, print, text and performance. She produces works stemming from a deeply involved research process that explore the complexities of social histories. Central to her practice is the voice: the uncovering of marginalised voices within history, the question of who speaks on behalf of whom and on what terms, as well as how her own voice reflects in different ways on the stories explored in her work.

Helen's practice is characterised by fragmented, non-linear narratives. Her work makes leaps between different places, times and contexts, forcing viewers to acknowledge complex global relations and the inextricable connection between the individual and society. She's interested in histories, storytelling and the excavation, re-interpretation and re-presentation of lost, unheard and buried voices.

In 2018 Helen won the Max Mara Art Prize for Women in collaboration with Whitechapel Gallery, and in 2019, she won the Turner Prize for her solo exhibition The Long Note - a film which explores the history and role of women in the civil rights movement in Derry Londonderry in 1968. Helen won along with Tai Shani, Oscar Murillo and Lawrence Abu Hamdan, after jointly requesting from the jury that all four artists win "in the name of commonality, multiplicity and solidarity".

Helen's work was screened as part of the Serpentine Cinema Series and Tate Artists Moving Image Screening Programme. She has exhibited at venues including Cubitt, London; Galerie Futura Alpha Nova, Berlin; The Tetley, Leeds; Open Source Contemporary Arts Festival; Hollybush Gardens, London; and 198 Contemporary Arts and Learning, London. She has written for Photoworks and Aperture magazine and was shortlisted for the Bridport poetry prize in 2015. Her work has been published in The Photographers' Gallery journal Loose Associations and in a new artist book and vinyl 12" with Bookworks, London. Helen was co-director of Brighton Photo Fringe Festival for 4 years.

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No payment is required to reserve a place.


5 days, 6 nights
August, 2022
The workshop costs €1299, inclusive of accommodation, excellent food and drinks (all diets catered for), transport from Toulouse and all activities. Grants, bursaries and discounts available, see

Host & Provider:


CAMP, Rue Principale, Aulus les Bains, 09140 France


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