July 2013

Belper Arts Trail 2013

Misery Generates HateThis text is my main text

Misery generates hate

Misery generates hate is a text based installation selected for the Belper Arts Trail 2013 and exhibited in the basement of Strutt’s North Mill Belper from Monday 8 to Sunday 21 July 2013. The installation included a small folded Risograph printed pamphlet ‘Misery generates hate/Full Employment in a Free Society (1994)’. Edition of 100.

The following extract is from a press release for the festival.

Standing between the dramatic stone columns in the basement of Strutt’s North Mill Belper, will be a large wooden frame from which many sheets of newsprint will be suspended on a roll, repeatedly cut into each sheet will be the phrase ‘Misery generates hate’. The phrase ‘Misery generates hate’, is a quotation from Charlotte Brontë’s novel Shirley (1849), which ficitionalises the 1812 Luddite uprising in the West Yorkshire woollen industry. It is also the phrase that the economist and social reformer William Beveridge (‘architect of the welfare state’) used to open his book ‘Full Employment in a Free Society’ (1944) that argues that ‘because individual employers are not capable of creating full employment, it must be the responsibility of the state.’

The reduction of the words that form the phrase Misery Generates Hate to a dot-matrix arrary of machine cut holes suggests the mechanisation, automation and eventual de-peopling of the textile industry, and in running the words together and stripping out punctuation and spacing, the work hints at how language and meaning (and history) can be lost or difficult to ‘read’.

Shore’s installation speaks directly to the history of Belper’s textile industry and the wider Derwent Valley Mills World Heritage site. Full Employment in a Free Society is about mechanisation, the replacement of the human by the machine, employment and usefulness, and the current coalition government’s austerity programme.