shiny bus

washing homeJames, photo by Edwin van Ouwerkerk Moria @edovino

washing homeJames, photo by Edwin van Ouwerkerk Moria @edovino

homeJames has done a fair amount of mileage (kilometreage??) since she last got a wash (she gets a spruce up every time we visit her previous-owners, Roundabout Charter). We have a very important weekend coming up so I thought I’d give her a bit of a wash. Since I’m living on Cockatoo Island right now it’s not like I can drive down to the nearest carwash, so I get my sponge and bucket (filled with hot water and eco-friendly washing up liquid) and start scrubbing. I used to wash cars for pocket money when I was a kid and having spent a month sanding and priming her before the re-spray, this is far from the first or last time I’ve been intimately involved with her bodywork :)

I’m about 3/4 done with the soaping and am wondering how the hell I’ll rinse her off when a man from the island’s staff came past in his buggy. I thought he was gonna tell me off for making a big soapy mess on their beautiful Island, but instead he brought a hose round and started washing off the soap! He was even patient enough to let me double-check for bits I’d missed so he could rinse those down again too. BLESS HIS LITTLE COTTON SOCKS! When I thanked him he said with a smile “it’s my pleasure” – I love how much random strangers connect with my beautiful bus.

I asked him his name (so I could thank him properly online, as you do) and, since I’d noticed an accent, where he’s from. He’s called Alex and comes from Peru although he hasn’t been home for 20 years. He’s been travelling the world since then and working for Cockatoo Island for two years. What a nomadic treasure! And another lovely story of the kindness of strangers to add to the growing database.

And here she is in all her shiny glory!

shiny clean

shiny clean

 

when i’m 64

Today is A Big Day. Hot on the heels of the most astonishing, challenging, rewarding and downright bonkers year and a half of my life (and then hibernating in a puddle of exhaustion for a couple of weeks), I just turned 40.

A few days ago I celebrated the first birthday of this project (which is really more of a ‘new life’ than a project), and my beautiful bus #homeJames is 23. This, I have surmised, equals a collective age of 64. I therefore am announcing my retirement and tomorrow will start the drive off into the sunset to enjoy my remaining years in total relaxation.

Just kidding. I have WAY too many awesome things up my sleeve to do something as silly as retire quite yet :)

Some people express their mid-life crises by selling their houses, buying a motorbike or a sportscar, having affairs with people half their age or leaving their partners. I have none of those things. My mid-life crisis is quite clearly manifest through this thing that I’m now doing. Chucking in working for “the man” and focusing instead on making things again. Living in a bus. Sharing way too much of the minutiae of my life through stream of consciousness drivel on the internet. Yeah, I’ve changed a LOT in my 40 years. I am changing more each day. And I am A-O-K with that. I’ve been doing a lot of thinking about what has happened the last few years, what it all means and what to do about it next. But more on that later. Today I want to celebrate with a little story, one of the oh-so-very-many that drive this project and my new world (pun fully intended).

Sydney Parking Blues

Pretty much the biggest hurdle when living in a bus is where the hell you can park up each night. When people offer to host me I ask for the following:

  • A legal, safe, secure, off-road parking spot that can fit a vehicle 6.5m long, 2m wide and 3m high.
  • A toilet you can access round the clock (if it has a shower too that’s just gold).
  • A nice view (optional, but welcomed).
  • An electrical hookup and wifi access are essential if I’m working on something for you, and are always a valuable extra if they’re available.

Parking in Sydney sucks even if you just drive a little runabout. Parking a bus in this city is frankly impossible. While I was at ISEA2013 I was generously hosted by COFA which meant that I was in their loading dock. Safe and very kind of them but not so much with the nice view. After ISEA ended and I had to pack up my old apartment in Darlinghurst I stowed the bus with the wonderfully bonkers Lewis at Greenpeace‘s HQ out of town. I have never seen anyone play Tetris with cars, buses, vans and boats like that before – wow. For the last couple of weeks I’ve been free-parking by beaches on the south coast, excepting a couple of nights at a campsite so I could shower, recharge and wash clothes.

Last night I came back into Sydney and had the same old problem. Just before I left I took the bus in for her first service (with me). There’s a whole other blog post in that day; Daniel and David Rodriguez and the team at Prime Automotive Repairs in Marrickville are absolute LEGENDS!  Essentially after spending a day with them they told me the secret way to get in to their forecourt and said if it was clear then I could park and hook up to their LX any time I needed. See, LEGENDS! So I set sail for there only to find the forecourt was full, so no go. I parked in sa side street and sat there a while just thinking it through. I don’t like parking on streets in case some nutter comes hurtling down the road and smashes into me while I’m sleeping. Damaging the bus would suck; being killed because I’m sleeping in a bus on a street would be approaching Darwin Awards level of dumb.

Besides, it was the eve of my 40th birthday – wouldn’t it be better to find somewhere beautiful to wake up?

So I went on a meander, and I found myself near the Lord Nelson micro-brewery in Miller’s Point (near The Rocks). Parking on-street was free between 10pm and 8am, so I set an alarm figuring I could buy myself two hours of extra naptime before working out where to go next.

This, ladies and gentleman, was my backdrop last night. I chose well.

#homeJames with amazing (but barely visible) backdrop view

#homeJames with amazing (but barely visible) backdrop view

And this is what that looks like in daylight.

daytime view of backdrop

daytime view of backdrop

The plan went pretty well. At 10am I woke again, checked the windscreen and hadn’t been ticketed. I don’t know what the area is like for inspectors but I figured I’d buy a bit of extra time (at $4.40ph) so got up and grabbed my change for the ticket machine. At 10.21am, before I’d left the bus this second time, I got ticketed. My gamble did not pay off and I now have a $101 fine. Oops.

Considering the sum total ‘accommodation’ costs I have had for the last fortnight are $31 for a campsite (plus fuel and general running costs on my old lady) I figured that’s actually not bad. You could easily pay far more for a crappy hotel with no view at all in this city. I also figured this did me a weird kind of favour – now I could stay as long as I wanted, I’d been fined anyway, right? So I settled in and made coffee and sat on my doorstep (my favourite place to be) enjoying the view and the stupendous amount of birthday love coming from the internet (see below) while my solar rig munched happily on the delicious sunshine.

Busstep Benefits

Sitting on my doorstep (which I prefer to call a ‘busstep’) means people see me when they walk past. Sometimes there’s no connection between myself and these randomly passing lives. Other times I look up, smile, show an openness or even throw a ‘hi’ or relevant comment. Sometimes they interrupt what I’m doing – generally because they’re admiring #homeJames, which of course makes me extremely happy – to ask questions about why i’m here or details about the bus. It’s a fascinating existence, all this, and something I’ve been ruminating on a lot lately, obviously. Random conversations with strangers is really very much at the heart of reallybigroadtrip; it’s where the meaning lies and where I see much future work coming from. It’s both daunting and exhilarating, especially for an introvert.

Today several people passed by, some chatting, some just nodding and smiling, some busy with their own worlds. And then Bob rocked up. Bob lives on this street. He was with a lovely little dog called Brandy that he’s taking care of for a neighbour and he loves buses. He came to tell me I had a parking ticket. I said I knew, and that I’d decided to enjoy the fact which was why I had left it there and was hanging out in the sunshine. We chatted for a while about the bus, travel, Australia, all the usual topics. Somehow I mentioned Cockatoo Island and he said (like another guy I randomly met is Geroa recently) that he’d worked there on the ships. The project I’m doing for Underbelly Arts Festival (the reason I’m back in Sydney) is about Ghost Stories, so I asked if he knew any. “Not there” he said “but there’s loads of ghosts around here”. I love a good ghost story so I asked for more info and we got chatting about the history of the location and about how developers are trying to evict the local community and tear down all the beautiful old buildings in order to build shitty new apartment blocks for rich businessmen. Dreadful.

Then he said “I saw you here last night when I was walking the dog. Shame I didn’t meet you then, I have a guest resident’s pass I could have given you. Free parking all day then. You could have used it”. He proceeded to give me his name, phone number and address and said anytime I want to I can just borrow his pass. I just picked it up, had another nice chat and as I left he said “have a very happy birthday, nice to meet you”.

Seriously. Human generosity astonishes me.

Here’s some more photos of #homeJames photos in this beautiful location which I can now proudly call our Sydney base! If you so desire you can gorge yourself on more of our buspr0n adventures here. Enjoy.

#homeJames with parking ticket *oops*

#homeJames with parking ticket *oops*

looking down the street

looking up the street

Birthday Love

Just before I put away the computer and go celebrate this coming-of-age with my fabulous friend and next Nomad in Resident Edwin van Ouwerkerk Moria (yeah, he’s Dutch!) I wanna say a huge heartfelt thanks to everyone who has sent love and greetings today. I may well be a single and sometimes lonely old spinster, but I have the best support network of family, friends, and colleagues that a person could ask for.

Waking up to so many messages across so many platforms today has thrown me right back to July 11th 2012 when my crowdfunding campaign went viral. It’s now 3.30pm and I still haven’t got through replying to all the text and voice love-showers. Love the bones of all of you x

I’m a Very Lucky Lady, for a 64 year old…

Happy 1st Birthday reallybigroadtrip

The question I’m asked most often about this project is when reallybigroadtrip started or will end. I find it impossible to answer this in one simple sentence but here’s the messy answer.

In some ways it started three years ago when I came up with the idea and scribbled down a load of notes, giggling to myself about how ridiculous it would be if I could pull it off. I was so enamoured with the idea that I immediately registered the domain name http://reallybigroadtrip.com – that was July 10th 2010. Or maybe it started in October 2011 when I wrote it up as an initial funding application (which was rejected), or April 2012 when I started the crowdfunding campaign, or July 2012 when the campaign ended. Or November 2012 when I found homeJames, or New Year’s Eve when I ‘moved in’ (albeit just a swag in the back of an empty shell), or May 2013 when she finally had a bed, a kitchen sink, roof racks and some basic storage spaces.

And the end date? Well there is no ‘end date’ :)

Happy 1st Birthday reallybigroadtrip!

big bus meets big orange

I’m not really doing anything specific for this, but I think every durational project (and their beautiful big red bus) needs a birthday so I have decided to make one up.

The day I knew this absurd dream was actually going to come to life was July 11th 2012 on what became known as ‘tweet day’. It was the day when my crowdfunding campaign went viral and I reached my target thanks to huge support from my hardcore supporters and tweets from Amanda Palmer, Neil Gaiman and Hugh Jackman. I think reallybigroadtrip’s birthday should therefore be today, July 11th.

I hope wherever you are you will raise a glass and toast her health like I will be toasting yours (probably with a hot toddy and a box of tissues rather than champagne, though, since I’m hunkered down with flu).

reallybigroadtrip’s first year

boreen point campsite for Floating Land

It’s been an astonishing year+ for me thanks ENTIRELY to my pozible supporters and all the other amazingly generous people who have shared so much kindness by way of beds/sofas, parking spots, moral support and hugs. I’ve literally not stopped since a good month before the campaign started last year and I’m utterly exhausted, but entirely happy to be where I am. Fortunately I now get a bit of a break, so that I can spend some proper settling-in time with my beloved bus.

homeJames is now truly a home (albeit far too full of stuff!) and I’m truly on ‘the journey’. Both my last two bookings and almost all my forseeable future ones are exclusively about making my own work rather than servicing other peoples’ creative practice. I really am now living the life I set out to. Gulp.

By way of a mini-summary: since New Year alone (when I started to live in homeJames), I have: spoken at the Haecksen mini-conf at Linux Conference; been one of The Subjects in a sleep deprivation residency; been commissioned/exhibited at Canberra’s Centennial celebrations; helped make Adelaide’s inaugural Mini Maker Faire happen; completed two stages of bus modifications; run two Nomadic Fab Lab tours; talked about crowdfunding and social media experiences for CraftSouth; been an Artist in Residence at Floating Land Festival and a Keynote Speaker at Balance/UnBalance Conference in the Sunshine Coast; worked with Elliott Bledsoe on ISEA2013‘s online community wrangling while also speaking at the ISEA2013/Vivid Ideas public talks and showcasing homeJames in a mini version of reallybigroadtrip. I’ve also done a few radio interviews about some of the above and been back on Download this Show again, which is always a treat.

Phew.

Next steps

In a huge turning point I’ve had two arts grants confirmed, one for ArtsSA’s Unexpected City program and another one that’s still under embargo. It’s pretty fantastic that the crowdfunding support built foundations for a project that now gets actual recognition from ‘traditional funding'; I’m blown away by that.

My next gig is being a mentor/collaborator on an Underbelly Arts Festival project called “Ghosts of Biloela” by Creative Nonfiction. It’s a locative media project which means that your physical location triggers different parts of the story. My Nomad in Residence for this one is Edwin van Ouwerkerk Moria who has a lot of experience working with locative narratives as he was one of the developers behind 7scenes. More on this nearer the time…

There is a public lab from 24th-31st July where we can share some of the work-in-progress (please come along and help us test it) and the actual festival is on 3rd/4th August – you can buy tickets here. I’m also involved in a live debate on Sunday 4th, where Jamie Gerlach and I will be slogging out whether love or art is better.

My Pozible supporters will have already heard about this because I gave them an early announcement. homeJames and I will be ferried over to Cockatoo Island a little earlier and I thought it would be a fun place to offer some of the dinners, high teas and ‘location for a photoshoot’ type things I have promised as rewards. Obviously dates and times are limited so depending on how many of you want to take me up on this we may do a group effort! Let me know if this is something you’d be interested in and I’ll try to coordinate the best for everyone.

After Cockatoo Island in August I’m heading back up to Brisbane where I’m becoming part of a 3D Printing test team for The Edge, building my own Prusa i3 and doing a few other bits n bobs. Then I head back to Adelaide to start work on my Unexpected City project which will happen Oct-Dec and feature a number of pop-up ‘Nights with a Nomad’ (more info to come).

In September – hopefully, if I get a travel grant – I’ll be heading to the Northern Hemisphere to speak at Ars Electronica in Australia and be a resident of the Nomadic Village in France. I won’t have homeJames with me but if any of you Northern Hemisphere types fancy a coffee drop me a line and I’ll try to coordinate something.

After that, well, there are a few things in the pipeline and some really exciting news coming up that shapes 2014. But I think that’s more than enough for one post :)

As always keep in touch via the comments here, facebook & twitter and I’ll seeya somewhere on the road!

UPDATE: erm, it seems I picked the date well. It’s also Tesla’s birthday today, and we LIKE HIM A LOT!

Unicycle Roadtrip – love your sister

Everyone who follows this project knows I’m a sucker for road trips of any kind, but this one blew me away on so many levels I don’t know where to begin.

In the UK I used to watch a lot of Australian TV and dream of what a life over here might be like. The Secret Life of Us was by far the best written, produced and performed of all of them and I only recently discovered there are whole extra series that never got broadcast over there. Since living and working in Australia around performance circuits I’ve bumped into a couple of the stars of the show – in fact *aw shucks* I became Facebook-friends with Todd MacDonald through hanging out with Danger Ensemble in Brisbane a while back. (Yeah I know, I’m a sad old cheesy fuckwit, but you knew that already, right?)

Yesterday (in prep toward my much-needed downtime) I started re-watching the series, something I’ve been wanting to do since I moved here in 2008. Funny how timing works. While watching (and loving it possibly even more than the first time around) I suddenly thought ‘Hey, I wonder if Todd is Facebook-friends with anyone from this series’ so I looked people up. (OK, I’ll be honest, I always thought Evan was cute so I looked Samuel Johnson up first). Sad, perhaps… but then I saw his campaign. Again, it’s funny how timing works.

Samuel Johnson's campaign to unicycle around Australia to promote breast cancer awareness http://loveyoursister.org/

Samuel Johnson’s campaign to unicycle around Australia to promote breast cancer awareness http://loveyoursister.org/

Any fears, doubts or concerns I may have had about my own road trip have gone. Every ounce of love and history I hold by naming my bus homeJames after James Mellor I doff toward Samuel and his sister Connie. They aim to raise $1million for Breast Cancer Awareness through the Garvan Institute. They have currently raised $434,608 and the journey ends in Kalgoorlie on July 13th. (Again, echoes of my own campaign timeline and goal distance rumble). I have donated and messaged them to see if there is anything my bus and I can do to support their journey but wanted at the very least to help them spread their word.

Their goals are:

  • Set a new Guinness World Record for the most distance travelled on a unicycle
  • Raise $1 million
  • Spread Connie’s message of breast cancer awareness.

You can also dare him… tho right now I’d be more keen to dare him to take a long hot sauna than encourage anything mean!

Looking at the map on their site Samuel has seemingly done the most non-sequitur route possible and is currently in WA; he should be in Augusta tomorrow. To anyone I know in that neck of the woods, please go out and give him a hug from me and homeJames, OK? But treat him gently, he seems to have been travelling on a unicycle since Cootamundra, NSW, in October – he’ll be more than a little sore!

FOLLOW

http://loveyoursister.org
https://twitter.com/loveyoursister
https://www.facebook.com/loveyoursister
http://www.youtube.com/user/loveyoursisterTV
http://instagram.com/loveyoursister

DONATE

Frustratingly (for this geek) you can’t currently donate online but you can do these things:

In Person  At any Bendigo Bank branch

via Phone  1300 73 66 77 (9am – 5pm AEST)
Accepting Mastercard, Visa and American Express

Cheque/Money Order
Made payable to “Garvan Research Foundation – LYS” and free postal to

Love Your Sister
c/o Garvan Research Foundation
Reply Paid 68593
DARLINGHURST NSW 2010

Direct Deposit
BSB: 082057
Account: 131172929
Garvan Research Foundation – Love Your Sister account
*Please use your name as ID for this deposit.

If you require a receipt please email foundation@garvan.org.au with the following:

  1. confirmation of donor name
  2. postal address
  3. donation amount
  4. date of donation

All donations $2 and over are fully tax deductible

And finally…

Possibly the cutest ‘getting to know social media because I have to, then realising I love this shit’ video I think I’ve ever seen <3

#rbrtISEA: reallybigroadtrip is on a road to no[w]here

homeJames at Hampton Village near Burra

a ‘where’s wally’ style homeJames at Hampton Village near Burra

  • There are going to be times when we can’t wait for somebody. Now, you’re either on the bus or off the bus. If you’re on the bus, and you get left behind, then you’ll find it again. If you’re off the bus in the first place — then it won’t make a damn.
    • As quoted by Tom Wolfe in The Electric Kool-Aid Acid Test (1968)

reallybigroadtrip is an experiment in pretty much everything. Professionally, creatively and personally I live almost entirely fluidly and in the moment. I used to be a Stage Manager and plan everything to the tiniest detail. Then I was a producer or project manager, coordinating superstructures of activities. This streamed more into facilitating, nurturing other peoples’ journeys, troubleshooting & providing techsupport or technoevangelism and helping them define their flow or their structures as required. Now I’m a maker again and find myself craving the unknown in one big literal and metaphorical journey. reallybigroadtrip is a manifestation of that journey.

My work for ISEA2013 has been exploring this process and so, somewhat naturally, the work itself has turned out to be that process.

All aboard!

We invite you to join us over ISEA2013 in a microcosm of the overarching reallybigroadtrip world. We’re so fluid you can even choose one of three forms to connect with us.

1. Public Talk

My Nomad in Residence Kate Chapman and two special guests Brenda L Croft and Cheryl L’Hirondelle will join me in a talk about mapping culture as part of the ISEA2013 public talks program with Vivid Ideas Festival. This is from 10-11.30am at MCA on Saturday 8th June. It costs $15 for general audiences and is free for ISEA2013 Conference Delegates but booking is required.

2. ISEA2013 Conference

Over the three days of the conference 11th-13th June homeJames (my beautiful big red bus) will be parked up on Eastern Avenue at the University of Sydney. Everyone is welcome to just pop along and have a nosey or grab me for an official ‘tour’ (don’t worry, it doesn’t take very long!).

I’ll also be live-tweeting the conference with Elliott Bledsoe and our team using the hashtag #iseeISEA – we really encourage you to share your top tips and experiences!

3. #rbrtISEA is no[w]here

Between 11am to 6pm on Mon 10th, Fri 14th, Sat 15th and Sun 16th June the bus will demonstrate the (inter)national adventure by hosting a mini version. Starting from Paddington we will be driving around Sydney finding locations that just feel like they would be a good place to stop. We will not be using maps, just following our noses and waiting for the place that just feels right. Once the location has been found my Nomad in Residence Kate Chapman and myself will park the bus, put out a couple of chairs and throw on the magnetic signs that indicate we are ‘open for business’. Then we will just see what happens.

Some passers-by will come and ask what we are doing, so we will tell them about reallybigroadtrip and about ISEA2013 and how we want to just meet people and see what happens. Sometimes they will suggest where we go next – we have two spare passenger seats so it’s entirely possible we will take them along with us when we go.

Some ISEA2013 audiences might know we’re doing this and want to come and find us in a random spare moment. We will take an instagram photograph (my account is @feesable) tagging our location so that at any time you can see where we are. If you want you can also message us directly; I’m @feesable and Kate is @wonderchook on Twitter. Be aware that we might be engaged in deep conversations with random strangers so you should let us know that you are coming so that we can hang around long enough to connect with you.

And if we get ‘moved on’… well that’s all just part of the journey, right?

Schedule

OK, that’s a lot of dates and times so here’s a handy chronological diary for you to know how and where you might find us. Or if you happen to see a big red bus parked up be sure to come over and say hello!

Sat 8th, 10-11.30am – public talk on mapping culture at the Museum of Contemporary Art (MCA).
Mon 10th, 11am-6pm – #rbrtISEA driving around Sydney – see @feesable / @wonderchook for locations.
Tues 11th, 9am-6pm – ISEA2013 conference where you can meet homeJames and I’ll be live-tweeting #iseeISEA.
Weds 12th, 9am-6pm – ISEA2013 conference where you can meet homeJames and I’ll be live-tweeting #iseeISEA.
Thurs 13th, 9am-6pm – ISEA2013 conference where you can meet homeJames and I’ll be live-tweeting #iseeISEA.
Fri 14th, 11am-6pm – #rbrtISEA driving around Sydney – see @feesable / @wonderchook for locations.
Sat 15th, 11am-6pm – #rbrtISEA driving around Sydney – see @feesable / @wonderchook for locations.
Sun 16th, 11am-6pm – #rbrtISEA driving around Sydney – see @feesable / @wonderchook for locations.

lateral drifts

Increasingly pissed off with Facebook’s continued disrespect for our personal rights and privacy, I’ve started using a new platform for my personal ramblings, to begin taking myself out of the anti-Net Neutrality world.

Known lets you publish status updates, etc, which are then pushed to Facebook, Twitter, etc (it’s in beta so there’s a lot more to come too). This means you own all rights to your content rather than giving them away to walled gardens that are more interested in your data than providing the open service you originally signed up for.

Check out more at http://withknown.com and follow my lateral drifts at http://fee.withknown.com.

Nomads in Residence

Since things are starting to hot-up around here it seems to be time to post a bit about what I mean by “Nomads in Residence”.

These nomads are basically my guests in the bus. They must be from the creative digital culture space but I’m really broad about that. By “digital culture” I mean artists, makers, hackers, coders, practitioners, researchers, games developers, animators, filmmakers, policy folk, arts workers, cultural practitioners… ummmmmmm…. other people who play creatively with technology. The point is to be INclusive, not EXclusive, so if you’re not included by title here but feel you should be included by practice then message me regardless.

I have a list of people I have already personally invited. I also have a bundle of folk I have just loved working with/around over the years and will be contacting in due course. But there’s also folk I stumble on/am introduced to who just spark something and need to be invited. For example, I just contacted my first total stranger because her work suits my thinking perfectly, and there might be the perfect match event coming up next year.

And then there’s the unknown-yet-by-me. Of which there are many!

I do not know everyone (or everything). Obviously. This whole project is about getting out there and seeing who/what I don’t know, as well as sharing who/what I do.

So.

The ‘challenge’

  • Location: You don’t need to be from another country; plenty of you gorgeous Australians are on my list. I need to see this country through your eyes and be introduced to your networks too.
  • Your mission: I ask all my “Nomads in Residence” to define where you want to go, who you want to meet and what you want to achieve from your trip.
  • Networking: Once I know your intentions I can help make connections with people you could meet both with me and outside of your time with me. I really encourage you to spend extra time in this amazing country if you can. I can also follow up on people you tell me I should know about in case we can meet them together.
  • Duration: I would love you to stay with me as long as you can, but I understand time is a valuable commodity and you are probably travelling a fair distance. When I started visiting Australia from the UK our costs were often split across a few organisations and that worked a treat, but affects timing/demands, etc.
  • Monies: As you can see from my crowdfunding campaign, this is all very DIY. I would love to offer you travel/accommodation, a nice fat artists fee and a luxurious ‘maker’ budget, but that’s not something I can promise. Especially right now. But I can fundraise (either through crowdfunding targeted to both our communities or through traditional arts funding) and co-productions/shared visits are pretty straightforward to coordinate. You will at least get standard return flights, acommodation/food in the bus and some kind of artist fee.
  • Accommodation: The bus will have a ‘bedroom’ space, a sofa-bed in the ‘lounge’ space, a swag (traditional aussie sleeping bag/tent), and an extra tent. You can choose which you’d like, even on a daily basis.

The Bigger Picture

This often freaks people out when I talk about it; “Your plans are too big, Fee. Calm down and take one step at a time”… Um, no. I think big missions help you better achieve baby steps… but that’s just me.

The big picture plan is to start the model in Australia but then take the concept all over the world. I’ve already been talking to a University in Canada who likes the concept as a research methodology. At some point we’ll run a co-production together to raise funds for a bus and the same process over there. That bus would of course drive across Canada, down to America and then South America, scooping more locals and international en route. I’m also British, so at some stage I’ll be setting up another bus in the UK, which would go to Europe… and so on.

The really-big-picture is that eventually I would like to have a bus in (or within access of) every continent. While I’m not using it the bus would be available for other digital culture practitioners. If they maintain the bus and continue to support the concept (capturing/sharing data, etc) they can have it for free when it’s not being used. If they want to do their own thing then they can hire it and any proceeds will go back in to the project.

National / International

This really isn’t just an Australian project, it’s a digital one. Like the internet it’s inspired by community, collaboration, creativity and connection. The potential is huge but the baby steps are really manageable and realistic. It just takes a little bit of conversation and we can make amazing things happen together.

So if you’re interested, message me with some responses to the above ‘challenge’ and we’ll take it from there.

UPDATE: Get a flavour of some of the Nomads.