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Arnolfini - est 1961

WITTA (Writing In /To /Through Art) is a practice-as-research initiative developed by Lizzie Lloyd (Senior Lecturer in Fine Art and Art & Writing UWE Bristol). Its name reflects an interest in works that develop interrogative, relational, enquiring, speculative, generative, playful and performative approaches to art through words, and words through art. It looks to actively and experimentally consider how work developed at the intersection of art and text allows for creative/recreative/uncreative, wayward and imaginative thinking.

In partnership with Arnolfini, WITTA will invite two speakers who explore language in relation to art to share their work, work-in-progress, and work-that-might-have-been. In this inaugural event we invite Polly Barton and Daniela Cascella to discuss translation, relationships between art, writing and sound, and what it means to write between disciplines.

If you’d like any further information about WITTA, or if you’d like to get involved, please contact

Writer Biography

Polly Barton is a Japanese translator and writer based in Bristol. Recent translations include Where the Wild Ladies Are by Aoko Matsuda and There’s No Such Thing as an Easy Job by Kikuko Tsumura. Her first non-fiction book, Fifty Sounds, is a memoir as personal dictionary, exploring her journey of language-learning through the lens of Japanese onomatopoeia. It won the 2019 Fitzcarraldo Editions Essay Prize and was published in 2021.

A cover image of Polly Barton, reading 'Fifty Sounds'

Daniela Cascella is an Italian-British writer, working with forms and transformations of critical writing that inhabit, echo, and are haunted by their subjects: literature, voices, concealments of the self. Writing in English as a second language, writing as a stranger in a language, she is drawn toward unstable and uncomfortable forms of writing-as-sounding, and toward the transmissions and interferences of knowledge across cultures.

A colour photograph of Author Daniela Cascella's Book, Chimeras.

Her books articulate tensions and points of contact between the literary and the sonic, through experiments with form, voice, and ways of reading: Chimeras (Sublunary Editions, 2022), Nothing As We Need It (Punctum Books / Risking Education, 2022), Singed. Muted Voice-Transmissions, After The Fire (Equus Press, 2017), F.M.R.L. Footnotes, Mirages, Refrains and Leftovers of Writing Sound (Zer0 Books, 2015), En Abîme: Listening, Reading, Writing. An Archival Fiction (Zer0 Books, 2012).