Five Bodies Workshop: Johanna Hedva

Image courtesy of Johanna Hedva. Photo: Pamila Payne
Image courtesy of Johanna Hedva. Photo: Pamila Payne

'On Doom'

Join us for a series of free monthly workshops exploring creative-critical practice, hybrid methodologies and experimental thinking.

Organised in collaboration with the Critical Poetics research group based at Nottingham Trent University, and featuring international guest speakers, the Five Bodies workshops provide a new platform for debate and collaboration for those interested in exploring the relationship between creative and critical writing.

Led by poet Johanna Hedva, this creative-critical workshop asks what might be opened because of, and through, the foreclosure of possibility. "Death, destruction, or some other terrible fate," reads the google definition of ‘doom’. In the wake of 2020 and its various catastrophes (COVID-19, the California wildfires, the U.S. election, the climate emergency), doom has asserted itself as a dominant condition. But what happens when we consider doom as generative: a beginning rather than an end? Can doom be used as a material like any other, malleable and infrastructural, decorative and common? For peoples not supported by the world's institutions of normative power, doom has already been long upon us and the world has ended many times. Think of Sun Ra,'It's After the End of the World, Don't You Know That Yet?' What comes to life within the space detonated by an event horizon? What new forms of meaning might be both annihilated and birthed by articulating doom? Is the doom/hope binary useful? ‘On Doom’ explores, through the entanglements of politics and aesthetics, how the actions of surrender, renunciation, and yielding are potentially emancipatory, how encountering the end can produce new forms of meaning for the past, present – and the future.

Our open call for the 2020-21 academic years is now closed. Join our Five Bodies monthly poetry series, where unexpected ideas, experimental drifts and multiple voices explore perceiving, sensing, feeling and knowing as knowledge-making practices.

Johanna Hedva is a Korean-American writer, artist, musician, and astrologer. Hedva is the author of Minerva the Miscarriage of the Brain, a collection of poems, performances, and essays, and the novel On Hell. Their album The Sun and the Moon was released in 2019, and the LP, Black Moon Lilith in Pisces in the 4th House, a doom-metal guitar and voice performance influenced by Korean shamanist ritual will be released in January 2021. Their work has been shown at Haus der Kulturen der Welt, Klosterruine, and Institute of Cultural Inquiry, Berlin; The Institute of Contemporary Arts in London, Performance Space New York, the LA Architecture and Design Museum, as well as the Museum of Contemporary Art on the Moon. Their writing has appeared in Triple Canopy, frieze, Lithub, The White Review, and is anthologized in Whitechapel: Documents of Contemporary Art.

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