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Critical conversation with Vicki Bennett

Critical Conversation Series

Developing Practice in Participatory Settings


Tyneside Cinema 

Wednesday 8th August

7pm - 9pm 

   Lead speaker:  Vicki Bennett (People Like us)

Chair:  Dominic Smith (Pixel Palace)


To book a place, please email: info@thepixelpalace.org



Cultural organisations in the North East of England have a strong record of working with artists to develop participatory arts projects in different settings. As part of a national arts research project funded by the Paul Hamlyn Foundation and designed to facilitate new dialogues around and understandings of participatory arts practice, the University of Sunderland is working with a consortium of regional partners (ArtWorks North East)* to develop a clearer understanding of what makes for good participatory practice. The overarching aim is to establish an innovative and sustainable cross disciplinary approach to creating excellent practice in participatory leadership. 



As part of this,ArtWorks North East is together hosting a series of ‘critical conversations’ over the next 12 months involving artists, participants, host groups and other collaborators from a variety of art forms.  We are inviting different people responsible for creating and delivering participatory work to reflect on their practice, and to open that practice up to discussion by others. Each conversation will take place in an open learning atmosphere in which artists/presenters will share their practice with others and where people feel able to ask challenging questions about that practice in appropriate ways.

The Pixel Palace is delivering one of these events on behalf of the University of Sunderland.  This event will focus on Participation in Creative Digital Media and online environments. We would like to discuss the different models of practice which exist and seek your views on issues of quality, process and experience. We hope that the opportunity to reflect on practice will be beneficial for those attending as well as informing this research project. 



Vicki Bennett (People Like Us)

Since 1991 Vicki Bennett has been making CDs, radio, and A/V multimedia under the name People Like Us. By animating and recontextualising found footage collages Vicki gives an equally witty and dark view of popular culture with a surrealistic edge. People Like Us broadcasts an ongoing experimental arts radio and podcast show on WFMU, called "DO or DIY", which, since it began in 2003, has had over a million "listen again" downloads.

Vicki has shown work at, amongst others, Tate Modern, The National Film Theatre, Purcell Room, The ICA, Sydney Opera House, Pompidou Centre, Sonar in Barcelona, The Walker Art Center in Minneapolis, The Barbican, Maxxi in Rome, the BBC and Channel 4. She has also performed radio sessions for the BBC's John Peel, Mixing It, and also CBC, KPFA and many more in the US. There have been features in The Observer, The Wire, NME and BBC website. People Like Us have been commissioned by The Arts Council England, The BBC, AV Festival, Sonic Arts Network, Forma, LUX and Lovebytes amongst others.


Dominic Smith

Dominic Smith is an artist and curator who’s practice explores open source methods of project development through a hands-on, open approach to working with art & technology.

He recently completed doctoral research with CRUMB at Sunderland University examining the relationship between open source production methods and methods employed by artists and curators.

Dominic is based at the Tyneside Cinema managing the Pixel Palace digital media arts programme.



ArtWorks: Developing Practice in Participatory Settings” is a Paul Hamlyn Foundation Special Initiative with support and funding from the Arts and Humanities Research Council, Creativity Culture & Education (supported by Arts Council England) and the Cultural Leadership Programme.

*Baltic Centre for Contemporary Arts, Equal Arts,  Helix Arts, Live Theatre, National Glass Centre, New Writing North, Regional Youth Work Unit, The Sage Gateshead, Tyneside Cinema.