‘No winder you canna catch fish’ is a new body of work by artist Holly Graham, developed in response to Gaada’s project ‘Weemin’s Wark’. The work takes as its starting point an oral history account held by the School of Scottish Studies Archives. In the audio excerpt, recorded in 1961, Kitty Laurenson speaks of the history of annual Shetland festival Up Helly Aa, noting how the sun-worship custom of processing ‘sungaits’, via the path of the sun, was later replaced by a route mapped in the opposite direction – ‘widdergaits’. Through a verbatim poem that touches on these digressions from tradition, and an accompanying collection of materials that speak of contemporary conversations surrounding calls for festival inclusivity reforms, Holly considers tangled ideas of resistance and push-back, natural courses or cycles, constructions of myth, and the passage of time.
26 October – 8 November 2020