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Pilgrimage season: walking with soul

7 Jul, 2024

For many of us, summer conjures thoughts of holidays. But for our medieval ancestors, the warmer months held a different kind of allure – the call of the pilgrimage. The word holiday in fact comes from ‘Holy Day’, and the summer marked the time when people could break away from daily routines and deepen their religious convictions with a journey to sacred lands. Imagine trading flip flops for sturdy walking boots and setting off on a journey to Santiago de Compostela or Canterbury. While the truly dedicated, like medieval mystic Margery Kempe, travelled all the way from Norfolk to Jerusalem!

Meanwhile, some of our team from walk · listen · create made a pilgrimage of sorts, travelling to Girona in Spain this week for the Walking Arts and Relational Geographies conference. Talks, walks, performances and events explored the themes of transhumance, nomadism and migrations.

Continuing in the spirit of pilgrimage season, this month we welcome UK travel writer Oliver Smith to discuss his new book This Holy Land on July 16th. Smith's evocative and enlightening travelogue delves into prehistoric, pagan, and Christian sites from standing stones to cathedrals, and explores how contemporary places like football stadiums and music festivals have become unexpected destinations for modern-day pilgrims.

We will continue embracing this spirit of exploration later this month with our WALC Café on July 23, which highlights the work of our Walking Arts and Local Communities partners  Gigacircus. Gigacircus will introduce the work of Mexican artist Gustavo Alvarez, who creates performances in urban areas, engaging "accidental audiences" and marginalized groups to redefine these spaces.

And whether you’re travelling far afield, or staying home, make the most of the longer days of summer to flex your creative muscles and enter one or all of our competitions and awards:

Do you have a story to tell about the power of connection forged on a shared path?
We invite you to enter our Walking Together competition. Submit a poem or flash story (250 words or under) that explores the concept of "Walking Together”.

Sound Walk September #SWS24
The SWS Awards celebrate the art of sound walking and invite creatives to capture the world through audio, with or without technology. Submit your creation (made from 2023-2024) for a chance to win up to €500.

The Marŝarto Awards #Marŝarto24
Have you created a unique, non-sonic walking art piece or experience? The Marŝarto Awards, companion to the SWS Awards, celebrate creative walking art. Think performance walks or visual and sensory experiences with a walking theme. Showcase your work on a global stage and win cash prizes up to 500 euros.  

Writer, walker, digital storyteller, psychogeographer

Sponsor: Soundtrails
Soundtrails is a leading locative platform based in Australia. We work on commission with local councils, national parks, Aboriginal communities and arts groups, as well as leading producers who know how to create an immersive sound experience.

Free for supporting members, open to everyone

2024-07-16 18:00 · Online
Our next Walking Writers' Salon guest will be author Oliver Smith who will join us to talk about On This Holy Island (Bloomsbury Continuum 2024). Keep reading

Latest podcast episodes

Join @TheBuzzKnight for this episode with singer, songwriter, troubadour Todd Snider. Todd’s music combines elements of rock, folk, blues and country and he is cele... Start listening
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Join @TheBuzzKnight for this classic replay with the frontman for the band Train Pat Monahan.   Pat talks about his musical beginnings and his creative process alon... Start listening
Matthew’s guest on this month’s chart show is the great Richard Thompson. In a wide-ranging interview, he muses on his songwriting process, warns of the terrible co... Start listening
Join @TheBuzzKnight for this episode with singer, songwriter and TV Host Carnie Wilson.  Carnie is the daughter of Brian Wilson, a member of the band Wilson Phillip... Start listening

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walk · listen · create is a member-supported organisation. If you like what we do, and want to see more of it, please become a supporting member.

You will be facilitating a more sustainable organisation and you will contribute to larger prizes for both the SWS and Marŝarto awards. And, as a supporting member, you get free access to our online cafés.

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New walking pieces

A groundbreaking exhibition by Soundwalk Collective and Patti Smith. Keep reading
A GPS-triggered audio trail in Bedford Town Centre, telling stories by local creatives inspired by town heritage & residents' memories of food & drink. Listening points are placed near benches or areas that are comfortable to be in. Allow 90 minutes. Keep reading

Upcoming events

8 - 13 Jul, 2024 · Online
A week long residential course devoted to poetry and walking and how particular landscapes inspires the writing of poetry, run by the Arvon Foundation, Hebden Bridg... Keep reading
2024-07-12 17:00 · Phoenix Art Space, Waterloo Place, Brighton and Hove, Brighton, UK
Exhibition at Phoenix Art Space, Brighton, 12 July to 11th August 2024. Private View Friday 12th July 6-8pm. Open everyday from 10am to 5pm. Keep reading

From our network

New zine! If you’re Minneapolis, you can pick one up for free from a selection of Free Little Libraries on Bryant Ave S, or you can order online. Check out Edible ... Keep reading
Times were hard in the early nineteenth century for country people, with the effects of the war with France, enclosures, the Corn laws, the Game Laws and the high-h... Keep reading
Girona is a small, attractive and friendly city in Cataluña / Catalonia, 105 kms from Barcelona. Popular with tourists, it has almost all the facilities you need fo... Keep reading
Dear friends, loiterers and lovers of drifting It’s First Sunday, this Sunday and time for change…. I’m delighted we have a guest loiterer facilitating our wander... Keep reading
In 1733, Voltaire and Rameau collaborated to create the opera "Samson", which was censored and whose music was lost. Claus Guth and Raphaël Pichon revive the spirit... Keep reading
Beaucoup ont fait l’expérience, dans un geste artistique, une expérience amoureuse, du fait que la première minute est souvent décisive ! Du coup de foudre à la sid... Keep reading
So pleased that my chapter in Myer Taub’s excellent collection, Forests and Fences, has now been published by Routledge. Forests … More Keep reading

Stuff we found

Local animal adoption platform celebrates its 7th anniversary with a special charity art exhibition Source: ‘Walk with Cats’ show to promote adoption of Shanghai’s ... Keep reading
From public bathrooms to bookstores, discover a lesser-known side of NYC queer history. Source: LGBTQ History is Spotlighted on This Two-Hour Walking Tour in NYC – ... Keep reading
The immersive multimedia installation ‘Walking Through a Songline’ in New Delhi, organized by the Australian High Commission and KNMA, showcases Source: Walking Thr... Keep reading
New to the idea of Jane’s Walks? They’re a celebration of neighborhoods and cities, often from the point of view of everyday people, in honor of legendary urban thi... Keep reading
The complex future of graffiti art Source: The complex future of graffiti art | July 3–9, 2024 | Real Change Keep reading
A new website aims to give people more confidence on multi-day, self-guided hikes, and sees our writer – who’d previously had to abandon a wild camping trip in the ... Keep reading

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Walk: He’s traivelled mony a lang gaet.

Added by Janette Kerr

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