My Crazy Family Golf

Watts & Dad

Archive Exhibitions (16 July to 28 August 2022)
This summer Fabrica presents, My Crazy Family Golf, a participative project made by Lisa Watts and her father, Gordon Watts (referred to as ‘Dad’), including the short film, Dad Cares.
My Crazy Family Golf tells Dad’s story of being the primary carer for his wife (Lisa’s Mum) for the majority of her adult life. Her complex mental illness has had profound effects on all the family and their relationships with each other. Mum’s complex mental illness has had profound effects on all the family and their relationships with each other. At the time of making the work Lisa’s mum entered residential care and this project grew from Lisa and Dad’s mutual desire to build something new to bring them closer.

Together Lisa Watts & Dad have created a series of crazy golf holes, each including audio recordings of the family made during Dad’s years of caring. Visitors are invited to play five holes of crazy golf with a handmade golf club and a scorecard to complete, as well as additional tabletop games. Fun and poignant, My Crazy Family Golf asks us to reflect on own family relationships and the nature of care.

The exhibition is accompanied by Dad Cares, a film made by Lisa that documents Dad and daughter as artistic collaborators. This is the first time Gordon has been able to work with Lisa and use his skills within a contemporary art context.

On Thursday 21 July, Lisa Watts and Becky Shaw discuss the themes that are central to My Crazy Family Golf: familial collaboration, games and when does making something social become art?

My Crazy Family Golf was produced by John Hansard Gallery, is supported by research and development funding from Arts Council England, a work-in-progress workshop session at Fabrica in 2020, and the Blast Theory artist residency programme in 2019.

About The Artist

Lisa Watts uses various media such as performance, video, photography, and digital imaging in her art practice, which often involves her own body. Her film Bun (1997), (made collaboratively with Susannah Gent) was shown globally at festivals in Canada, India, and Mexico, and also broadcast in Spain, Italy and France. In 1998, Channel 4 made a short documentary, Muscles (made in collaboration with Clare Charnley) about her digital photographic work. Recent projects include Not a Decorator 2017-18 (shown at SIA, Sheffield: Castlefield Gallery, Manchester and John Hansard Gallery, Southampton) and Skittish (shown at Spacex Gallery, Exeter, Vane Gallery, Newcastle, The Tetley, Leeds).

Other recent projects have included two artist’s books: 429 Significant Moments: Documenting an Artist’s Research and Processes (2018) and 32 Significant Moments: an Artist’s Practice as Research (2004), alongside numerous performance projects at venues including: Site Gallery, Sheffield; Interspace, Bulgaria; National Review of Live Art, Glasgow; Hull Time Based Arts; Bradford International Festival, amongst others.

Arts council england
John hansard gallery
University southampton

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