About

5’9 / 1981 / B Rh+ / Instagram: @veryspecificvideotapes / Twitter: @tessanorton

Like Descartes, only with a job! A contemporary art Aubrey Plaza that literally nobody asked for!

Art writer / artist and writer / writer / artist / [that meme of snails crawling on someone’s face]. Anyway. I do text-based projects and events, essays and sometimes criticism, although on the latter point, I am always mindful of Prince’s words: “Critics are going to say, “Ah, Miles done went off.” Why say that? Why even tell Miles he went off? You know, if you don’t like it, don’t talk about it. Go buy another record”. This is from an excellent 80s Rolling Stone interview in which Prince also says that, like me, his favourite Joni Mitchell album is The Hissing of Summer Lawns*.

My work has been featured at Liverpool Biennial, Art Licks, The Tetley etc. Throughout 2018 I was in residence at Wysing Arts Centre in 2018 working on a project about having a kid, space-time, ghosts, pop music and art: it’s going to become a publication this year, which you can see at Wysing’s 30th Anniversary show opening in July. And I am co-editing, with Bob Stanley, a big old book about The Fall, which will be published by Faber Social in 2021.

As a freelance writer, I contribute regularly to The Wire and various other publications. I also work as Development Director at Cecil Sharp House and I’m on the board at LUX artists’ moving image. I live in West Yorkshire, and work between there and north London, so let’s be friends.

Writing commissions and enquiries:

1-800-SORRY-I-RUINED-YOUR-EXHIBITION-CATALOGUE or tessanorton at gmail dot com

* wltm anyone who likes The Hissing of Summer Lawns as much as me and Prince

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