Alice Z Jones

Alice Z Jones. Foto: Sina Lesnik
Alice Z Jones. Foto: Sina Lesnik

Artist Alice Z Jones answers our questionnaire: »When was the pre-pandemic world?«

What are you working on at the moment?
A few things for September . . . bricklaying and sonic holes for a sound-installation which will be part of ›Out Now‹ at Uferhallen; final cuts of an audio-visual work with Dis Fig (Felicia Chen) for 3hdTV/Creamcake which will be showing at ›Kunstpunkt‹; on the ›Black Reels‹ film workshops and festival with ›Black Art Action Berlin‹.

Who or what has influenced you in your work?
My parents taught me to value the process of making, to sustain a practice for its sake and my own: an inherited wealth of D.I.Y. skills.

What artwork[s] do you return to again and again?
Things I’ve had on loop: Linton Kwesi Johnson, Poet and the Roots—›Dread beat n’ blood‹, Cevdet Erek—›Bergama Stereo‹, Moor Mother—›Fetish Bones‹, Hito Steyerl—›Lovely Andrea‹, Lawrence Abu Hamdan—›The Voice Before the Law‹, Chris Ofili—›No Woman No Cry‹, Tracey Emin—›Why I Never Became a Dancer‹, Eartheater—›Phoenix: Flames Are Dew Upon My Skin‹, John Akomfrah/The Black Audio Film Collective—›Handsworth Songs‹—for the sharp tip of the tongue, the lyrical rhythms and directness of good story-telling.

What would you do if you weren’t an artist?
I’d be a herbalist.

What are you reading at the moment?
Right now, ›The Sound of Culture: Diaspora and Black Technopoetics‹ by Louis Chude-Sokei and ›Cannibal‹ by Safiya Sinclair. Works which close and open pasts; ›prognosticating echoes‹ with mouths shut ›like knives‹.

What should art today be able to do, in your opinion?
It should be able to do whatever it wants to, has to, needs to or needs to refuse to.

What aspect of the pre-pandemic world do you grieveand what things do you not miss at all?
When was the pre-pandemic world? I grieve time-shortening, erasure, a normalisation of structures (private and public) which place profit over life and care: pre and post this current pandemic.

If you had to sum up your work in one word, what would it be?

Do you have a daily ritual?
Coffee, water, ice. Keeps me awake and hydrated.

What art or culture-related events do you look forward to in the near future?
›The Matrix 4‹, the second-last part of ›Attack on Titan‹, and since I will be in NY from August: Grada Kilomba, ›Heroines, Birds and Monsters‹ at Amant Art Foundation.

Creamcake presents: Alice Z Jones x Dis Fig’s ›Cast-Off‹
17—26 SEP 2021
Opening 16 SEP, 7pm
Special Opening Hours Berlin Art Week
17—19 SEP 2021, 3—7pm