Voice Recognition: a performance at Bluecoat Liverpool on October 16th

On Sunday October 16th, I am taking part in Electronic Voice Phenomena at the Bluecoat Liverpool. Organised by Mercy with support from Mark Greenwood, the event begins at 2030hrs and will include performances and presentations by Holly Pester, Nathan Jones, Emma Bennett and Soriah.

My contribution is:

Voice Recognition: a Play (after Gertrude Stein, William Shakespeare and Rolf Harris)

In the winter of 1969-70 Rolf Harris had a number one hit in the UK and Ireland with ‘Two Little Boys’. Some time after this my cousin and I were pressed to sing the song together, to be recorded by a visiting American relation. The scene has remained with me. It was my first encounter with my recorded voice, and is wrapped up with questions of identity, difference, and becoming. It also raises questions of what may be found in the reproduction of spoken or sung text. What is this unique trace? Who do we hear here?

# myLiFe Event {background

On Saturday 1st October 2011, I made a small publication as part of the Queer Eye Enquiry project. It is an A4 folded sheet printed on both sides, then placed in a green envelope, labelled with a title and date, and then signed and numbered. The publication is titled # myLiFe Event {background and is in an edition of 21. It was distributed among friends in Totnes, and at the Fireplace Gallery, Plymouth on Sunday 2nd October. The text references Joe Brainard‘s I Remember and borrows material from live blog winston89   on Stickam and from a spam comment sent to this site.

Queer Eye Enquiry DIY8

I’m taking part in Queer Eye Enquiry, one of the DIY8 projects supported by Live Art Development Agency and Fierce. It is being led by Chris Goode who is setting the participants tasks to carry out each Saturday for five weeks. We will then gather to share outcomes / ideas / reflection in a few weeks in Birmingham. Part of my response to Assignment 2 is the sound piece attached. This was presented as a one-to-one piece for a number of people, with part of the sound on headphones, and the vocal track delivered live.

his hand in mine


Window Work. DxDx Studios, Plymouth

DXDX studios, Regent Street, Plymouth

July 26th to 16th August 2011

‘after Durer after Mantegna’




The basis for this image is found in an engraving of the
‘Death of Orpheus’ (1494) by Albrecht Durer which is derived from an earlier
lost image by Mantegna. In the image, a scroll attached to a tree declares
Orpheus to be the first pederast or homosexual, justifying his being killed by
the two female figures that are beating him. The window image has adpated
elements of the Durer composition to design a contemporary emblem that repeats
the labelling of the other as aberrant or unnatural. This comments on the ongoing
persecution and execution of gay, lesbian and people designated as other or
unnatural in countries around the world. The design also engages with the
intersection between the textual and the pictorial.

[from DxDx website]  WINDOW WORK is a programme of artworks commissioned for the building’s shop display window on the Regent Street side of the building. The current WINDOW WORK project asks artists (through an open call submission process) to propose a text work, diagram, drawing, instruction piece, design etc that can easily be drawn (translated) onto the main studio window using chalk pens.

Organ of Corti braille poem






I wrote a short text to accompany the Organ of Corti which was designed to be translated into braille and included as an insert in the project programme booklet. Having first composed a 200 word text, the limits of fitting braille text to an A5 card, meant it had to be edited down to 20 words. The image shows part of the braille print. The text reads:



listening to the

underheard; the Organ

of Corti smoothes

a kink in the sound

scatter, nudges

my attention in the


Mark Leahy