Supporting Material: A kind of project review

Maya Wallis

In October 2021 I worked with 7 Artists to produce a publication called Supporting Material. Supporting Material is a 24-page zine exploring themes of support and care in the everyday. It tried to place value on moments that pass us by, in an attempt to figure out what small things hold us afloat and what simple acts deserve recognition. Over time the work felt like less a collection of individual submissions, edited together, printed by riso, aligned onto sugar paper and staple bound, but more of an inhibitor of these moments, things and acts.  Supporting Material started to exist, not only through the publication, but through email exchanges sharing reading recommendations, studio drinking sessions offering endless formatting, ink choosing and pet insurance advice, the solving of a riso-printing computer update disaster, a mates rate tattoo, a bouquet of flowers hand-picked from a local park, and generous lending of a project space providing an excuse to come together for a launch event (with a great batch of home brew table beer made for the occasion).*

Illustration 1: Image of the collaborative tracklist made with the 7 contributors that reflected themes of support and care. It was broadcasted as part of a promotional show on Slacks Radio (Tyne and Wear), alongside interwoven anecdotes and readings from contributors of the publication itself. The tracks were collected as the project developed and played as backing music at the Launch Event.

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*Thank you to Overlay Press (George Stewart) for helping produce and print Supporting Material and to the 7 contributors: Hannah Christy, Natasha Martin, Freya Patterson, Alex Leigh, Taylor Jack Smith, Bethany Stead and Sadaf Chezari. Another huge thankyou to Sadaf and the Biscuit Tin Studios and thank you to Sid for the delicious home brew.

Maya is an artist and writer based in Newcastle upon Tyne whose work spans across text, film, book making and radio production. Concerned with small things, acts and feelings, she aims to give weight to ribbons, gold buttons and red shoe laces. She has exhibited in Baltic Centre of Contemporary Art, Great North Museum, 36 Limestreet Gallery and internationally at Hungry Eyes Festival in Germany. www.mayawallis.com