About the Blog
The name xenogothic was initially chosen due to a long-held feeling that I’m not a very good Goth. In wanting to finally embrace this imposter syndrome and explore it, I adopted this blogonym and have tried to describe a worldview through it.
As I see it, the Gothic has long been representative of various narrative and aesthetic limits. Initially used to invoke the persistence of our own restless and barbarous pasts long into our futures, the Gothic has often brought to mind the signs and signifiers at the edge of what we know and understand about the world around us — the weird, the eerie, the grotesque…
More recently, however, it has become synonymous with a largely outdated and aesthetically conservative subculture. Goths and the Gothic eat and humiliate each other, unable to keep up with the present, much like everything else; losing their own sense of the future.
Broadly speaking, xenogothic is an attempt to break the Gothic’s obsession with its own reflection and instead build new futures for the Gothic; reweird the Gothic; encourage a new Gothic that exists outside of itself, one capable of having an impact on the world beyond its present status as rigid aesthetic cliché.
I’m a writer and photographer from Kingston-upon-Hull, where I spent most of my time growing up doing band photography and making zines and mixtapes and researching the city’s history as the birthplace of Industrial Music.
In 2010, I began an undergraduate degree in Photographic Art at the University of Wales, Newport. After putting it to good use for a few years working on photography exhibitions in Hull and Cardiff between 2013 and 2016, I decided to do a Masters degree in Contemporary Art Theory at Goldsmiths, scratching an itch to finally get to grips with Deleuze and to be taught by two of my heroes: Mark Fisher and Kodwo Eshun.
This blog began as an excuse to keep writing after a traumatic postgraduate experience, in a way that didn’t involve staying on the soul-sucking academic treadmill. Embracing the para-academic life, I write about philosophy, politics and culture — often all at once — resisting the reactive nature of an academicised “Cultural Studies” and instead attempting to create cultures anew out of the everyday.
Still based in south east London, I spend my days working on exhibitions and freelancing in the publishing industry. I’m currently Publishing Assistant at Urbanomic Media and Gallery & Communications Manager at Anise Gallery.
Support the Blog
Whilst my audience has continued to grow at a steady pace over the last two years, I struggle financially, juggling the blog around an ad hoc freelance career in exhibitions and publishing in a city that I can no longer afford to leave. I have been left thinking about how I can use the blog as a platform to help support myself whilst also staying true to my principles of open-access and cultural generosity.
I have started selling zines and merch on BigCartel and Teespring. I’ve also opened a Ko-Fi profile for small donations. Most recently, however, I’ve set up a Patreon alongside a private Discord server where I’ll try to orchestrate in-depth chats with patrons and organise reading groups, writing advice and IRL meetups.
I’m hugely appreciative of all the support I’ve already received from people over the last two years and hopefully this makes sense to many as a next step, trying to keep up the consistency of my content in a world that is increasingly precarious.
Whether you’ve got questions about the blog, any of the topics above or just want to say hello, you can email me at firstname.lastname@example.org.