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Text Audio

wildmind – on being self-taught

Published: 26 January 2021 Author: gobscure

wildmind is a digital commission created by Catherine Walsh / Kristina Simenski / Eric Scarboro / Padma Rao / Claire Ogah supported by gobscure

it is an audiocollage edited by gobscure from a group poem based on interviews with participants. there is also a BSL interpretation of the script by Faye Alvi

Listen to wildmind audiocollage:

wildmind artwork by goscure

Watch BSL interpretation of the text


there’s multiple advantages to being self-taught
– poverty and exclusion are none of them
– but wildmind definitely

wildmind -wildminded -wildmining
lateral connections – following tangents
– art all the stronger for

wildminded – wildmining – wildmind

being untaught in art is
baking bread together
running hands thru grass
potato printing – waterfall-freezing
questions-passion – socialising
wild arts lived experience –
being bold, not doing as yr told
seeing worlds from different places
and at a different pace –
being untaught is internal resource
we dip into without even realising
self-taught means being a living museum
untutored is in the eye of the beholder
teaching yourself is still teaching – be wild!
greater extremes – dreams – redeeming
wildmind art is sometimes raw, loss, more
– also waking up saying i’m living again



oi :  academy : the tutored –
why tuck us away in small spaces
– see us as self help
its not easy walking into yr room self-taught
even if the work is screaming
we still spend money, still research,
works just as valid, and we work harder
because we have to learn by ourself

little degree, that piece of paper, golden ticket
allowing yu to walk thru doors and say
i paid, i want something more in return

being untutored does free yr mind
yr stripped of straightjacket
but self-doubt sits on yr shoulder
not allowing yu to fly

when yu look at our art, say this is amazing,
and ask what uni yu studied at – then pull a face
and walk away –  farcical how we aren’t
tolerated without a studio

we all produce crap art from time to time –
that’s not whether yu went to uni or no –
were not so tight in our boxes
we have the freedom of our heads
don’t pigeonhole us cos yu fear
there’s so much more to listen to
but it haunts not being appreciated
because we haven’t got that golden ticket

the more trained the more they freeze when offered the chance to create

why do gatekeepers keep our beautiful things away from audiences to enjoy



university puts reins on so they can always pull yu back

self-taughts still teaching – but its teaching yourself

yu don’t need to be taught to understand art
understanding the real worlds much more important

arts expensive?  naaah.  lifes expensive

but where did yu learn?  just pick up a pen

self-taught look at the art first
the trained tend to read first then look
– isn’t that brainwashing?

soaking all up
self-taught wildmind eye of the beholder
its about listening more
(gatekeepers, listen more)

wild-minds not doing as yr told
wildminds teaching yourself
art has 2 be wild
be more alert –
raw (& roar)

& gatekeepers, goldenticketholders, get-a-life

give us space, we will take it

loosen up – see our wider, wilder shores

Eric Scarboro

I am known as a performer as Eric Scarboro. I have been/am, a Punk singer, Comedian, actor, writer, artist and Wrestling Commissioner, among other roles that have occasionally payed the rent. I have been disabled, but mobile, since 1998. Currently an activist supporting Stop The War, Campaign Against The Arms Trade, Palestine Solidarity Campaign, and anti-racism organisations. At present I am teaching English to refugees and helping to feed the victims of Austerity. Oh, as a victim of domestic violence, I am also homeless. The world's worst self-publicist, you will be very lucky to find any traces of me on-line. There are some, but good luck finding them.