A photo of Iain Forsyth and Jane Pollard

Coping Mechanisms Podcast

01 Jul 2020

This brand-new podcast series explores how impromptu online communities have helped many feel a little less isolated.

Speaking to familiar faces, including Carol MorleyJarvis CockerNabihah IqbalNoel Fielding and Tim Burgess, the series reflects on how guest have instigated new activities online, open to all, to stay creative in lockdown.

Created and hosted by award-winning artists and film makers Iain Forsyth and Jane Pollard, this series is a joyful listen for anyone who has (re)discovered their creative side in lockdown.

#1 - Make Your Own Entertainment

How do we cope when our world is unexpectedly turned upside down? In the first episode of Coping Mechanisms Iain & Jane explore the collective importance of creative initiatives devised in lockdown with Jarvis Cocker and Alain ‘Fusion’ Clapham.

Online lockdown projects have helped many of us feel a little less isolated and for some, especially performers, it has been about finding ways to carry on regardless. Here Jarvis Cocker discusses hosting his “Domestic Disco” on Instagram, spinning records from his living room and inviting viewers to join him for a socially-distanced dance. 

For others, the priority has been keeping platforms open and ensuring voices are still heard. Alain ‘Fusion’ Clapham is the founder of Black Man’s Time. Determined to create something positive out of the moment, “Black Love Stories”, intended to be launched in real life, was swiftly reassembled online, and now airs every Friday night on Instagram Live.

#2 - Life Drawing's A Killer

Why is it so many of us turn to creativity in tough times? In Episode 2 of Coping Mechanisms Iain and Jane speak to two incredible personalities: Noel Fielding and Sue Tilley, who both turned to running art classes in lockdown.

The comedian Noel Fielding, well-known for his role as one half of The Mighty Boosh, is a comedian, writer, actor, artist, musician and now the presenter of a much-loved TV show about baking. Sue Tilley is an artist. She’s best known as the subject of Lucian Freud’s painting Benefits Supervisor Sleeping and her book written about her close friend, Leigh Bowery: The Life and Times of an Icon.

#3 - Connected in Time

In Episode 3 of Coping Mechanisms Iain and Jane explore how Twitter has become an unlikely positive platform during lockdown. 

Catch up with the brilliant writer and director Carol Morley, whose films include Dreams of a Life and The Falling. Carol has been hosting “Friday Film Club” – each week she chooses a readily available, free-to-watch film. People then watch at the same time and meet up on Twitter to discuss it afterwards. 

Similarly The Charlatans frontman, musician, writer, DJ and record label owner, Tim Burgess launched an extensive series of “Tim’s Twitter Listening Parties”, where fans could come together to ask questions and share memories.

#4 - The Avoidance of Boredom

Are we witnessing the start of an important shift? Has the virus cultivated a set of circumstances for the evolution of how we access, shape and share culture?

In the final episode Iain and Jane talk to the stand-up comedian and radio broadcaster Robin Ince about the Stay at Home Festival and musician, producer and DJ Nabihah Iqbal about her time as Lockdown Herbalist. Delving into what it is that drives people to channel their creative energies and help us feel a little less isolated. We also welcome back Jarvis Cocker who may send you off to sleep with his Bedtime Stories. 



Coping Mechanisms is a Somerset House podcast. 
Created by Iain Forsyth & Jane Pollard 
Produced by Eleanor Scott & Daniel Breuer
Music by Bernholtz.  
Thank you to all the artists who have contributed to the series.