Outskirts, Edited by Flo Brooks at Counter Plymouth Art Book Fair

Posters from Outskirts at Counter

March 2018–April 2018

In the week leading up to, and during, the Counter Plymouth Art Book Fair Makina Books presented oversized pages from Flo Brooks’ ‘Outskirts’ publication in the Column Bakehouse cafe/gallery.

Robin Silas Christian (Makina Books) and Flo Brooks discussed ‘Outskirts’ and Makina as an ongoing project and archive at Ocean Studios.

Outskirts is a social practice art project initiated by Flo Brooks in 2016, exploring the intersection between liminality and identity through visual and textual exchanges.

It arose from a desire to share, collaborate and give form to our experiences of in-betweeness (liminality), and first took shape with the launch of social portrait collaboration The Liminal Portrait Exchange, and a publication callout on themes relating to liminality and gender, culminating in Outskirts, a bookwork published by Makina Books in 2017.

Featuring contributions from 16 participants from all over the world, the work ranges in subject from queer dissonance to the neoliberal agenda, and in media from photography to print to prose. The bookwork also features a selection of portraits from The Liminal Portrait Exchange, where people are invited to share their experience of liminality through image, object, text or sound, and have a de/constructed portrait created in response.

A continuous and shifting project, Outskirts has curated and organised exhibitions at White Cubicle Toilet Gallery, (with Makina Books), London, 2017, and at Plymouth Art Weekender, 2017, and Exeter Phoenix Cafe Gallery, 2017 (both with Robin Christian and Richard Phoenix and with audio descriptions by Caroline Dawson).

Outskirts is transgender, feminist and queer, it places emphasis on trans and gender non-conforming narratives, but sees these categories as permeable, shifting, and part of a much broader network of allies, friends and conspirators.