Erin Sparks

To watch a full version of my Final Project, please click on the link in my Instagram bio.

Final Project

Looking Back to Move Forward

My audio-visual performance installation explores how living in colonial Guyana and migrating to the UK during the Windrush era has shaped my family’s cultural identity.

Using oral storytelling, we confront the trauma of being disconnected from our Indian ancestral heritage, alleviating shame and guilt rooted in internalised colonialism.

Through automatic dance and music improvisation, I explore my subconscious responses to these anecdotes- challenging hegemonic, Western perceptions of what “Fine Art” is.

Their vulnerability encourages audiences to consider the universality of suffering, regardless of background.

The final installation creates an intimate space for active listening. The audio piece features anecdotal stories, mixed with music from my family’s personal archives layered with vocal harmonies that are played across a quadraphonic sound system for an immersive experience.

An improvised dance performance accompanies this, reflecting my personal response to their stories in real time.

Storytelling circle, discussing our personal music collection from Guyana and from when we moved to the UK.

Storytelling itself is inherently a collaborative process, where both the teller and listener depend on each other for the story to take place. The audience, therefore, becomes an essential part of this work, if they choose to listen.

Still from documentation of the harmony workshop with the Loughborough Choir.

Friends who can empathise with the message of my work have contributed to this final piece. I am also grateful for the members of the Loughborough Choir, who participated in a vocal harmony workshop that I led. Their voices carry mine throughout the work- emphasising the strength of the collective. I deeply appreciate their support and admire their sense of community.

Improvised music making whilst listening to story clips.

Working with others has been an integral part of my holistic practice. I thank my family for participating in Storytelling Workshops with me. This cathartic experience has transformed our relationships with each other and the way we see ourselves. This work is a testament to the healing power that oral storytelling can have.

Visionary Thinkers

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