"Rebecca Sharp’s bold and intelligent poetry unearths the fossil fuel economy. These beautifully crafted poems spiral like an ammonite’s shell and create vivid soundscapes. ...an exhilarating glimpse of a world after oil" (Yvonne Reddick - on Rough Currency)
"a vibrant visual aesthetic on the page, but beyond that, a deeper currency runs for excavation… a dab of the surreal, internal rhymes and mesmerizing rhythms uprooting the sonic qualities of nature in poetry, Rebecca Sharp's polyvocal play with language steers on loop; a soundscape for the soul” (Janette Ayachi - on Rough Currency)
"beautiful, lyrical work... a vision which is perhaps nearer the truth than we know." (Meg Bateman - on Little Forks / Forcan Beaga)
"fascinatingly complex, audacious and at times brain-poppingly clever work" (Neil Cooper, Herald Scotland)
b. 1979, Glasgow, Scotland
Rebecca Sharp is a writer and interdisciplinary artist whose work encompasses poetry, plays and performance; in spoken-word, installation, and print; collaborative and participatory projects.
Based in Fife, Scotland. Currently the inaugural Artist in Residence with the Centre for Energy Ethics (CEE) at the University of St Andrews, supported by Creative Scotland and CEE, researching and writing a new full-length poetry collection for publication in 2024.
In 2020 she received a Literature Matters Award from the Royal Society of Literature to write the poetry pamphlet collection Rough Currency (Tapsalteerie 2021), exploring our various entanglements with fossil fuels and the oil economy. A preview selection of the poems won 2nd Prize in The Art of Energy Awards 2021 (Centre for Energy Ethics, University of St Andrews).
Other poetry includes: Notes for a Traveller (2021 Souterrain Press), visual poetry installation commissioned for KIOSK - An Lanntair; THIS (2020, with Steve Smart) - Finalist in the Brush & Lyre Prize for Multimedia Poetry, commissioned by StAnza Poetry Festival and Book Week Scotland; Unmapped (2013), exhibition and publication of poems and paintings with artist Anna King; and The Ballad of Juniper Davy and Sonny Lumiere (2010), publication and performances with artist Elizabeth Willow and METAL Liverpool. In 2016 she was Poet-Perfumer in Residence with StAnza Poetry Festival, where she created the site-specific installation of poems and perfume blends Five Charms for the Potingair. From this she created a limited edition box-set of the same name (containing the poems with vials of perfume -"irresistible", Times Literary Supplement); and developed Poetry Apothecary - a participatory workshop combining poetry-writing with perfume-blending, which ran from 2016-2020.
Plays include Last Child (Arches theatre, Glasgow 2001 and HERE Arts Center, NYC 2002); Danger: Hollow Sidewalk (Arches theatre, 2006); The Wakeful Chamber (A Play, A Pie & A Pint/Sound Festival - Lemon Tree, Aberdeen and Oran Mor, Glasgow 2015); and The Air That Carries The Weight (Traverse theatre, Stellar Quines theatre company - Edinburgh 2016). Other work for performance includes: For the Bees (with Mr McFall’s Chamber); The Unmaking of Mary Somerville (Stellar Quines theatre company and Scottish National Portrait Gallery); and Rules of the Moon (with sound artist Philip Jeck – The Bluecoat, Liverpool and Hidden Door Festival, Edinburgh).
She has received funding awards from Creative Scotland, Arts Council England, Society of Authors, Tom McGrath Trust, Playwrights' Studio Scotland, Gaelic Books Council, and the Royal Society of Literature. She has held residencies with a range of organisations including METAL Liverpool, Edge Hill University, the Bothy Project, Creative Carbon Scotland, and StAnza: Scotland’s International Poetry Festival. She regularly reads at poetry and literature events and festivals throughout Scotland and the UK, and in 2017 represented Scotland at the International Poetry Festival of Nicaragua in Granada.
She gained early teaching experience at the University of Glasgow, and later through association with The Windows Project in Liverpool. She continues to lead innovative workshops and participatory projects, independently and in partnership with a wide range of community groups, schools, HE institutions, arts and cultural organisations. She has been a past Trustee of Scottish PEN; and is an Affiliate Member of the Centre for Energy Ethics (University of St Andrews). She is a professional member of the National Association of Writers in Education, Scottish PEN, Scottish Society of Playwrights, the Federation of Writers Scotland, and the Scottish Book Trust Live Literature database.
She co-runs Platform Poetry events in Fife; and co-runs Souterrain Press, for the occasional production of increasingly niche projects.