Simon Yuill, a recent writer-in-residence at SSW during part of the ongoing curated programme Slow Prototypes, has just released the publication Stackwalker:Interviews 2008-2010, published by the CCA: Centre for Contemporary Arts in Glasgow.
Simon Yuill’s ‘Stackwalker:Interviews 2008-2010’ is a collection of interviews from a project originally presented in the exhibition ‘Fields, Factories and Workshops’ commissioned by CCA in 2010. The Stackwalker project was initiated from an enquiry into current forms of self-organised production in rural Scotland, the relationship of these to law and nature, and the various localised, often informal, forms of governance and social structure within which these exist. Amongst the various people interviewed two particular groups became prominent: west-coast crofters and contemporary migrant workers from A8 states (Poland and the Baltic countries) working in fishing and food production in the north-east. Historical links between these groups exist in that, firstly, the Gaelic-speaking peoples were once the main migrant labour force for the fish and food industries elsewhere in Scotland, and, secondly, in the late 19th century, an emerging consciousness of the Gaelic communities as part of a greater political class came through association with East European and Baltic migrant workers in the Central Belt.
The subject matter unfolds from the bottom up, one interview leading to the contacts that became the basis for later interviews. As a whole, the book does not present a portrait of any one particular group of people, but rather a complex of statements, offering many aspects of a process that is not easily bounded in terms of specific identities, periods, or contexts. The project questions the construction and use of categories such as ‘indigenous’ and ‘migrant’ within systems of modern day capital and class formation and addresses topics that include the rural rent strikes and crofter land raids, various forms of self-constituted worker and community-organised groups official and informal archives, gangmasters and agency work, housing, food production and land politics.
Print editions of the book can be ordered online through Cornerhouse books:
Additional material and ebook versions are also available through the project website:
Simon Yuill is an artist, writer and programmer based in Glasgow. His work includes the use of interview and research processes, film, publishing, and custom software systems. Stackwalker is part of a series of works exploring land, law, and labour. Other projects within this series include a history of the Pollok Free State, a road protest camp and autonomous community that existed in Glasgow in the 1990s, and a collection of studies of various types of commons (such as common lands, commoner’s rights, collective housing, and Scottish Common Good trusts) and how these operate as social infrastructures. He was the inaugural winner of the Vil√©m Flusser Theory Award (Berlin, 2008), has been a Research Resident at the Piet Zwart Institute (Rotterdam, 2005), and is currently an Honorary Research Fellow with the Centre for Cultural Studies at Goldsmiths College (London).
Book publication by CCA: Centre for Contemporary Arts, 2012
ISBN: 9 780956 271389