Mat Osmond lives and works in Falmouth, Cornwall. He spent the last few years making narrative poems in words and pictures, the imagery for which was rooted in memories of walking by the sea at night. Whilst doing this, he evolved a provisional working title: Stories for Seeing in the Dark. The Dark Mountain Manifesto seemed to voice what that phrase had meant to him, and why it had stuck in his head.
He sees encountering that manifesto as in many ways marking a watershed. Listening to Dark Mountain speak of a time of unraveling, his chief impression was that it was a relief, at last, just to hear someone say it. Something which has continued to draw Mat to Dark Mountain’s work is that for him their approach to the recuperative work of uncivilisation affirms something entirely traditional about art: that it’s the job of the poet or storyteller to point out the ground under our feet, to offer us images through which to see our condition, to show us anew the moment we stand in.
Mat’s illustrated poetry was published in the first two Dark Mountain books. His current work, still taking shape, is a bit less focused on place, and more on character. Two characters, to be exact, engaged in a perpetual comedy of errors. A little melodrama stuck on loop, within which being alive to the world (and to what it asks of us) dances with its strange twin – that dogged preoccupation with which we pursue more important plans.