A couple of years ago Tony Nwachukwu and I wrote a paper about diversity and adaptive resilience as part of Arts Council England’s Creative Case for Diversity. This, I think, led to me being asked if I’d be one of 8 people to feature in a series of films called Heads Up, described as ‘A series of film portraits tapping into the hearts and minds of a group of arts leaders and their individual interpretation of the Creative Case for Diversity’. You can see the short film about me and my thinking above or here.
It’s a nerves-inducing thing having a film made about you, even leaving aside vanity about what you look like. Did I say anything daft or inadvertently incriminating if taken out of context? Do my ideas get across? That’s for others to decide, I guess, but I think the filmmakers Sarah Pickthall and Abbie Norris have done a great job on this series of films, which I do recommend you watch.
Colin Hambrook, editor of www.disabilityartsonline.org.uk wrote a really interesting blog about the film which interestingly (for me at least) very much picks up on the connections between my poems and the other ideas in the film. Never has so much connection between my work and William Blake been made! But, seriously, as I thought about it, I realise Colin is spot in saying ‘For Robinson adapting to the world as it happens is a process of looking for the bigger picture in the detail’, and not just in my poetry but throughout my ‘thinking practice.’
I was pleased that the diversity of my own practice was built into their vision – including my poetry practice. (Thanks to Arc for letting us film a performance in their studio, by the way.) The bridges of Stockton come out of it well, as does the industrial imagery of Teesside, and there’s even a walk-on part for our cat, playing herself. Those who stay to the end will notice the soundtrack is music I made myself (not for this specifically, but for the poetry performance you see a glimpse of), and I will admit to being very pleased how that sounds.