Cornish artists and new writers join forces to launch visual showcase

By Cultivator Cornwall and Plymouth University - 21st June 2022

 A captivating visual collaboration between Cornish artists and London-based writers has launched online launch this month as part of a project from the University of Plymouth and Cultivator Cornwall.

Synesthesia II,  which runs for three months, is an experimental arts project showcasing the work of ten artists from across Cornwall and the Isles of Scilly and investigating the way we experience art remotely using the power of words and conversations.

The work exhibited in Synesthesia II is a response to the context of lockdown during the global pandemic, and also addresses the challenges faced by artists outside of urban centres.

The programme of events – now in its second year - is organised by Cultivator Cornwall and the University of Plymouth, partnering with London-based curatorial agency DATEAGLE ART.

The online showcase features a series of artwork and essays, seeing the five participating writers each partnered with two of the ten artists to create collaborative pieces.  

Vanessa Murrell, project curator for the project with Martin Mayorga at DATEAGLE ART, said: “The importance of this project is not to be underestimated. By combining visual and written contributions from diverse geographical, socioeconomic and cultural perspectives, each is enriched by the other.”

Fiona Sperryn, one of the artists participating in the collaboration, said: “'Synesthesia II has been both inspirational and thought-provoking. Both the conversations with the writer and the photographer have helped me to view my practice in different ways. It feels like the beginning of some interesting connections of ideas and creatives.

Janice Li, a writer on the project, added: “Distinct from usual artist interviews and studio visits, Synesthesia II has been an expansive experience - an opportunity to engage in critical and intellectual exchanges as well as personal ones with artists whose points of inquiry are similar to mine, and to explore a more creative format of writing for myself.”

The collaborative project culminates in a two-part symposium on 30 June and 7 July entitled Parallels/Encounters: Art, Words and their Meetings, discussing the parallel of art and words in contemporary visual art practices investigates and how they come together in forms of publications.

Featuring discussions, practical workshops and sharing of practice with contributors from different perspectives of these encounters, the evet is open to anyone working in the creative arts.
Emma Dyason, Project Officer for the University of Plymouth’s The Bridge, said: “The University of Plymouth has a long history of supporting the cultural and creative industries across the region.

“We are working hard with Cultivator to explore exciting opportunities that showcase the creative talent across the region, and we’re thrilled to be delivering the second iteration of this project and to be working with new writers and artists.”

Tonia Lu, Creative Business Advisor at Cultivator Cornwall, said: “Cultivator aims to develop and champion the rich and diverse creative and cultural sectors in Cornwall, and it’s our absolute pleasure to see Synesthesia come back in its second iteration and to work with new writers through DATEAGLE. The project will no doubt contribute to the dynamism of the contemporary art scene in Cornwall while showcasing artists from the region to the world."

Explore the collaboration between the artists and writers from 10 June by visiting:

Artists interested in finding out more about attending the two-part symposium can find out more here:


Picture credits: John Hersey

The importance of this project is not to be underestimated.

Vanessa Murrell, project curator for the project
Man with a tablet