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23 On Now

New funding from British Council to support long-term ecological grief project

23rd Jan 2023

We're excited to announce support from British Council which will allow us to develop our ongoing collaboration with artist Youngsook Choi on her latest long-term project: In Every Bite of the Emperor.

The funding will support Youngsook to develop the next phase of the project which involves field research in both England and Malaysia.

In Every Bite of the Emperor explores the climate crisis through the experience of grief. The project weaves together knowledge and experiences of environmental damage and community destruction within the UK (St Helens), Malaysia, South Korea and Vietnam, offering a decolonial* and multi-species approach to storytelling and solidarity practices.

The project asks: how do we - through a process of grieving, gathering, storytelling, collective healing, and solidarity - imagine new ways to recover our lost connections and move towards a shared future?

Youngsook is a London-based artist and researcher with a PhD in human geography. Her practice relates to the subjective position as a woman, mother, and migrant of Korean heritage, coming from a working-class background. Her recent performances include Not This Future (supported by Heart of Glass), and explore the concept of 'political spirituality' and community action, combining scientific research with folk tales, mythologies and performance.

In Malaysia, we are excited to be working with community arts organisation Gerimis and its co-founder Wendi Sia who’ll be supporting Youngsook on the field research.

In St Helens, we are delighted to be working with our friends at Chrysalis Centre for Change and focusing on land at Colliers Moss Common, cared for by The Mersey Forest.

*Decolonisation refers to the process of deconstructing colonial ideologies around the superiority and privilege of Western thought and approaches.

About the British Council

The British Council builds connections, understanding and trust between people in the UK and other countries through arts and culture, education and the English language. They help young people to gain the skills, confidence and connections they are looking for to realise their potential and to participate in strong and inclusive communities. They support them to learn English, to get a high-quality education and to gain internationally recognised qualifications. Their work in arts and culture stimulates creative expression and exchange and nurtures creative enterprise.

Photo: Wendi Sia