18th November, 2009
Dougald and I have spent the last few days huddled beneath a range of real, as well as metaphorical, mountains in the wild north of England, where we have been plotting the next stages of the Dark Mountain Project and reviewing how things have gone so far.
Our verdict: so far, so good. News of the Dark Mountain has spread worldwide, and reaction has been remarkable. In some quarters we have been misunderstood, dismissed or caricatured, just as we predicted in the manifesto. It’s been interesting to watch this happen. Particularly interesting to me has been the fact that the language in which it has happened has been startlingly similar from all quarters, suggesting that received opinion is being mobilised in the face of a challenge from a place which is not easy to immediately pin down. Musician Chris T-T, who performed at our launch, touches on this in a recent Morning Star column, writing amusingly of the reaction of ‘the soft left media, who’ve devoted astonishing acres of space to misunderstanding [the] fundamental precepts’ of what we’re up to.
This, of course, is all part of the fun. If it wasn’t happening, we would be worrying that were doing something wrong. And at the same time as various grandees have been grandly missing the point, we have been provoking discussion, debate, writing and performance all over the world. Some of this is being channelled into submissions for the first issue of the Dark Mountain journal. We have received some wonderful stuff so far, and are expecting more. If you have submitted - thank you. You will hear from us soon. If not, please do. You have until the end of the year. More information about the journal is here.
It’s becoming clear that the first issue of the journal is going to be something special. So to accompany its launch we are planning something of similarly insane ambition. On the May bank holiday weekend next year – the 28th to the 30th of May 2010 – the journal will be launched at the first Dark Mountain festival. Held in Llangollen, north Wales, the festival will feature a menu of speakers, musicians, comedians, writers,discussions, exhibitions, expeditions and other bits and pieces. It should be a memorable and challenging weekend.
There will be more about this on here as things develop. We’ll get the first tranche of tickets on sale in the new year, along with some more detail of exactly what the event will entail. For now, put the date in your diaries. And if you are a performer, exhibiting artist, speaker or anyone else who might like to be involved – or if you know anyone that you think should be performing – please get in touch.
Posted by Paul Kingsnorth on 18 November, 09
Posted in: Blog
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