zack mennell (UK) is an emerging (unemployed) artist using writing, photography and performance to explore queerness and neurodiversity in relation to presence and visibility.

Artistic expression is, for me, a way to make sense of the world and an attempt to contextualise who I am within it. In stepping into difficulty and pain through artmaking, I attempt to understand life through a different register to that of daily survival. I want my work to have an uncanny quality, that it might temporarily unsettle familiar places, making visible some of the strange aspects and tensions embedded there.

I want to step outside, to be seen, to take up space, to make something private public.

I have been continuously othered - by the NHS, by University, by the DWP. My work is a way of doing something else - something creative, disruptive and affirming - with my status as ‘other’.
I’m interested in intuitive knowledge, proprioception, and finding ways of extending the nonsense utterances that make up speech. I’m currently asking:

what does it mean to be seen?

on whose terms is visibility gained?

where can the working class, queer, abject, porous, neurodivergent subject fit?

can I find a way of being present but unseen?


video by zack mennell, 2020