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Derek Horton, born 24 June, 1956, is an artist, writer, publisher and teacher. He worked in the jewelry trade, then as a wood machinist, and as a lorry driver, before becoming involved in community arts and urban adventure playgrounds in the 1970’s. This world of inflatables and telegraph poles resulted in an interest in sculpture that saw him making and exhibiting work in the 1980’s before beginning a long period in university art education in the 1990’s. With Chris Bloor he set up a ground-breaking new undergraduate programme in 1997 at Leeds Metropolitan University that encouraged students from diverse backgrounds and often with few formal academic qualifications to make art in ways that were not dependent on conventional studio practices nor on the critical theory that weighed down so many art degree courses at that time. This course reflected his interests in the relationship of art and popular culture, the inter-relationship of digital technologies and manual production methods in contemporary art, and in ephemeral, nomadic and improvisatory approaches to creative action. He was subsequently a Principal Lecturer and the head of Research in Contemporary Art at Leeds Metropolitan University until December 2007. He co-founded the online journal ‘/seconds’ with Peter Lewis in 2005 and with him was its editor for its first seven editions, remaining still on its editorial board. [1]) In 2009 he began publishing the online magazine ‘Soanyway’ which he co-edits with Lisa Stansbie. [2] Soanyway is a site bringing together words, pictures and sound that tell stories in the broadest possible sense of the term.

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