Meet The Mentors: Jennifer Higgie // The Double Negative Fellowship 2018

Jennifer Higgie

We’d like to introduce the final, extraordinary mentor taking part in our (inaugural) The Double Negative Fellowship: frieze magazine’s Editorial Director, Jennifer Higgie. This art school graduate knows A LOT about publishing and freelance (having written about art for frieze since 1997), and is a talented novelist and screenwriter…

Jennifer Higgie is an Australian writer based in London. She is the Editorial Director and staff writer of frieze magazine. Her writing for frieze is available to read here.

She has also published a novel, Bedlam (Sternberg Press), is the editor of The Artist’s Joke (Whitechapel / MIT press) and is a screenwriter. She was a member of the Turner Prize jury in 2008.

Throughout this year, Jennifer will be mentoring early career writers from the North of England, as part of The Double Negative Fellowship 2018: a professional development support package for writers that aims to boost their confidence and widen their networks, nationally and internationally.

Jennifer told us about her experience of being mentored, and gave us a taste of the support she’ll be offering to our Fellows…

“Good art writing is simply good writing”

Hi Jennifer! Did you ever have a mentor? If so, what were they like? If not, how do you think you might have benefitted from one at the start of your career?

James Roberts, who was reviews editor and then editor of frieze, was the first person to give me a break with my writing. He was a brilliant editor who taught me so much about clarity and concision. He also hammered into me that good art writing is simply good writing.

If you could, what would you like to tell your younger self?

Don’t worry so much and work even harder.

What’s the best bit of practical advice anyone’s ever given you regarding your career in writing?

James Roberts once chastised me for using the word ‘poetic’. He underlined it and wrote: ‘what poem?’ In one fell swoop, he opened my eyes to the pitfalls of cliché.

As told to Laura Robertson

The Double Negative Fellowship 2018 aims to discover and encourage new, daring voices from the North of England. A brand new support package for exceptional writers who are interested in art and culture, The Double Negative Fellowship includes one-to-one mentoring from Ellen, plus Stephanie Bailey (Editor-in-Chief, Ocula), Oliver Basciano (International Editor, ArtReview), and Jennifer Higgie (Editorial Director, frieze). Find out more here 

The Double Negative would like to wholeheartedly thank our friends and supporters: Arts Council EnglandArtReviewCreArt (Network of Cities for Artistic Creation), Culture Liverpool, Contemporary Visual Arts Network North West (CVAN NW), Heart of GlassHistory of Art at Liverpool John Moores University, Liverpool BiennialOcula, and the University of Salford Art Collection; with particular thanks to Sean Durney, Stephanie Bailey, Oliver Basciano, Jennifer Higgie and Ellen Mara De Wachter

Read more about the resulting book, Present Tense, and the authors’ journey through The Double Negative Fellowship.

Arts Council England


Posted on 10/07/2018 by thedoublenegative