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David Overend's Blog (18)

Change and repair: Trixxy walking, place-stories and recovery in a time of virus, by Helen Billinghurst & Phil Smith

Over the last two years we have been investigating an inexorable web of entanglement between story and place that has emerged during creative research projects. In the following essay we will recount how our experiences working on two such projects during the time of Covid have informed our understanding of the nature of this entanglement and…


Added by David Overend on December 21, 2020 at 10:00 — No Comments

Lewis Hetherington swims with beavers

Days before the lockdown began, we made it back to Bamff Estate in Perthshire - the site of Scotland's first reintroduced beavers. Moving on from our usual walking methods, we donned neoprene and attempted some creative swimming experiments. While our usual writing and research is curtailed, here are some images and a couple of short texts from Lewis Hetherington. 

Also see Laura Bissell's 'Landscaping with beavers' just published in…


Added by David Overend on June 17, 2020 at 15:02 — No Comments

Notes towards becoming beaver by Jamie Lorimer. Bamff Estate, Perthshire

We gathered in Bamff in March to continue our wild experiments in the company of beavers and their terraqueous (or land and water) landscapes. Our primary aim was to develop a creative swimming methodology to address the following questions:

  • How do beavers sense and inhabit their watery environment?
  • How can wild swimming…

Added by David Overend on March 15, 2020 at 19:30 — No Comments

Bamff Beavers

We have just returned from a wild weekend at the Bamff beaver project in Perthshire. Bamff hosts the longest established population of reintroduced beavers in Scotland and is located amidst the growing population of beavers in the Tay valley. The Ramsay family, who own the estate, are key players in current debates about beaver…


Added by David Overend on June 24, 2019 at 19:30 — No Comments

Reflections on our latest visit to Knepp

On 14th– 17th September 2018, I returned to Knepp Castle Estate for a third time with Jamie Lorimer, along with three new visitors: Sofie Narbed, Jenny Swingler and Scott Twynholm. On previous trips we had scoped out, explored and experimented with this complicated site; learning to read, interpret and work with the wild processes and inhabitants of the Wildland Project (Overend and Lorimer 2018). This time, we planned to make something: to create a text that…


Added by David Overend on October 29, 2018 at 15:30 — No Comments

The Six Wild Ways of the Oak

An audio essay by Jamie Lorimer, Sofie Narbed, David Overend, Jenny Swingler and Scott Twynholm. Written at Knepp Wildland Project in West Sussex.

The Six Wild…


Added by David Overend on October 8, 2018 at 14:30 — No Comments

Helen Billinghurst's sketches and maps

Some images and maps by Helen Billinghurst, from a creative retreat at Knepp Castle Estate, West Sussex…


Added by David Overend on October 11, 2017 at 19:30 — No Comments

Performing Wild Geographies


A selection of images from a two-day creative workshop that took place at Knepp Castle Estate in West Sussex in October 2017. The Estate is home to Knepp Wildland Project, a large-scale conservation initiative established in 2002 by the landowners, Sir Charles Burrell and Isabella Tree. Adopting a…


Added by David Overend on October 10, 2017 at 23:00 — 1 Comment

The Elephant in the Hedge

9 February 2017

I have been spending a lot of time on my own recently, taking a regular journey by air between my home in Glasgow and my workplace in Surrey. This hasn’t been entirely unpleasant. Suspended miles above the landscape, or responding to emails in the reassuring universality of airport lounges, it has been easy…


Added by David Overend on February 9, 2017 at 17:00 — No Comments

David Overend Walks Route 77

Walking Route 77

March 2014 

Driving between Glasgow and Ayr several times a week, I was in danger of becoming Tim Edensor’s stereotypical…


Added by David Overend on March 25, 2014 at 23:30 — No Comments

Imagining Travel

Paper presented at Into the New Symposium, Royal Conservatoire of Scotland and the Arches, Glasgow, January 2014

My journey begins with what Laura Watts (2008) calls ‘imagined desire’ - a vision of flying across the Atlantic Ocean, exploring a new city in temperatures down to the minus 20s. I am travelling as co-director of Bullet Catch by Rob Drummond; a touring theatre show produced by the Arches. Together with Rob and our…


Added by David Overend on February 17, 2014 at 19:37 — No Comments

São Paulo, June 2013


After a particularly uncomfortable and severely delayed two-day journey from Charleston to São Paulo, we slump down with a beer in a hotel bar and attempt to wind down. This is the reality of touring theatre – far from home, exhausted and disoriented, desperate for a drink. We have been travelling from place to place for almost three months…


Added by David Overend on September 25, 2013 at 9:49 — No Comments

World Wide Wandering

E found that early attempts at wandering through Paris and London were frequently thwarted by the irresistible pull of the iPhone Maps application. How could e follow the psychogeographical contours of the city when the multinational data gatherers had been there already, rendering the streets and boulevards hopelessly knowable and searchable? Leaving the technology at home seemed disingenuous; a desperate nostalgic hankering for a bygone age before mobile internet. The city was no longer…


Added by David Overend on December 2, 2012 at 10:30 — No Comments

David Overend is Misguided in Ayr

Eight walkers assembled behind the train station for the second walk of the day. A smaller group than earlier, but all eager and willing to be misguided by Phil Smith, who had never visited Ayr before. Phil selected three walkers to carry unidentified objects, wrapped in tea towels, and over the course of the afternoon three rocks were revealed. The first was…


Added by David Overend on November 28, 2012 at 18:00 — No Comments

David Overend attends the launch of Community Spirit

The crew of Community Spirit at the launch event in Emsworth, Hampshire

I was drawn to this project from the beginning. Following progress online, I watched the collection and selection of hundreds of wooden objects, the design of the vessel, and the collective construction process taking place in a boat shed in…


Added by David Overend on August 22, 2012 at 14:30 — No Comments

Adrian Howells discusses the impact of travelling on his evolving arts practice

This text is from Adrian’s contribution to the Making Routes launch event at the Arches in Glasgow on 23/09/11…


Added by David Overend on October 5, 2011 at 11:30 — No Comments

Ishbel McFarlane shares her first impressions of performing Even in Edinburgh/Glasgow

First impressions of things I learned from doing my show Even in Edinburgh/Glasgow on the train between Edinburgh Waverley and Glasgow Queen Street as part of the Edinburgh Fringe Festival 2011:…


Added by David Overend on September 12, 2011 at 11:30 — No Comments

David Overend explores pathways in performance

My direction? Anywhere. Because one is always nearer by not keeping still.…


Added by David Overend on April 16, 2011 at 11:00 — No Comments

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