textual explorations

how writing acts
and the writing act is
its trace and mark making 
in and through time,
space, event and media



Malone began her enquiry into writing acts, the space between the line and sign, through text-weaves. She used her shredded journals, or pages / sheets on which she wrote handwritten accounts of daily experiences and actions.

Malone's text-weaves have been published in Axon Journal, The Capalino Review, Jacket2, and one is housed in The Wallace Arts Trust Collection. Click here to see more at her website.

Malone's shredding of all her writing meant she lost years of considered thoughts, and ideas. The sacrifice of her journaled experiences into ephemera helped Malone consider writing as a mark-making process, an energy-transfer, and that which can be fluid.

The page shown here is one of the few pages Malone 'saved' which became a poem and recording. That speech comes after the writing and the writing here is a stream of consciousness, illustrates the immediacy of writing rather than speech being immediate. In this recording the speech is more constructed and perforative of a 'poetry reading', and Malone distorts the 'poetic voice'.

Her page poems written during her PhD research (and given in the Appendix) are examples of crafted and reworked writing, yet the poems persist in showing a subject in movement, or illustrating how the speaker 'sees' language and weighs in on a shifting position in language. 



Malone  went on to weave numerous text-weaves and most of them are held in private collections. The text-weaves from journal pages usually measured an average size of 280mm x 280mm (having worked from A4 pages). This work here is 280mm x 280mm and the frame is 460mm x 480mm.



from the beginning

At the start of her PhD research, when Malone was yet to become Coni Text, she began to look at how writing is performative. Filmed in May, 2015, the footage here includes the very first text-weave she did and footage from Vitamin S.



continuing acts of shredded handwriting


From writing to weaving to finding ways to experience the ongoingness and movement of writing, Malone came to wearing textiles / text weaves (shredded hand writing). Malone drew inspiration from the 'fili'. The fili was the shamanic poet-seer of the Gaelic people who would wear a tuigen made of feathers. The texture and significance of the architecture paper (pictured with a tui feather--native New Zealand bird) were all considerations for Malone. The poem 'fili' is performed by Coni Text as a soliloquy in 'Reign of Contexti' and this work was a finalist for the Leslie Scalapino Award (2016-17). Malone wove more than one cloak, and wore this one pictured in the New York performance which was later gifted to Fiona Templeton.



The process of generating 'writers blocks' furthered Malone's enquiry into writing interactions. The writers block played on the production of writing and still continued to write through block printing. The erasure given in the process of shredding handwriting and constructing the blocks led Malone to consider how un-documenting and de-archiving (despite the necessary function of this digital archive for her PhD records) illustrated a freedom from ideological inscription. In addition, without the literariness of writing, the materiality of writing became a clearer exchange, an energetic transfer as Olson proposed, acted in and from the writers block



This sculpture unified key areas of Malone's practice into a single expression. Le Temps Temple shows Coni Text from the Queen of Contexti performance (in Venice) through a miniature. Coni Text enters 'the times' temple made up of an unravelling writers block, revealing contexti. The walls and dome are made up of contextiosaics. Coni faces her own mimesis in a mirrored glass paperweight, an infinite mimetic reflection, and the weight sits under, or holds up the times of all the writing. The work showed at Watt Space Gallery, Newcastle, N.S.W., following Malone's exhibition, Reign of Contexti. The brief for the group show was on the theme 'temp'. The work showed from 16 May through to 3 June, 2018.


Using the writing leaves of  C⃣o⃣n⃣t⃣e⃣x⃣t⃣i⃣ gifted to artist, Rena Pearson, she responded with this work, exhibited at Millers in Auckland, September 2018. This shredded writing had been taken from pages written on handmade chemical free Italian paper from a gifted journal. This journal also made small writers blocks for printing shown above.

Contexti Teapots, Rena Pearson, 2018
Italian Contexti.jpg
Footnote folded in


From the very first weave in May 2015, to writers blocks, contexti, contextiosaics, and this final work, 'footnote' the intersection and spaces between mark-making, writing and its performativity were realised. 'Footnote' featured in the group show, Visualis |Toikupu: a visual poetry exhibition, at Studio One – Toi Tū, in Ponsonby, Auckland, April 2019. These contexti sheets, with Malone's shredded handwritten words, had earlier formed the ceiling in her installation 'Reign of Contexti: a room of one's own' (also pictured). This work declares the rain fallen, and a mass of writing now a footnote, placed at the feet of the wreader who now sees text, to tread, stand, walk around, or be on the same footing with all that had once reigned. Malone's writing returns to her birthplace, Tāmaki-makau-rau, Auckland, Aotearoa. Nau mai rā. The show was curated by Rachael Naomi and Makyla Curtis. Included in the show were visual poets Miriam Barr, Stephanie Christie, Cilla McQueen, Greg O’Brien, Maddy O’Dwyer, Sophie Procter, John Pule, Lisa Samuels, Donelle Shilling, Rachael Naomi and Makyla Curtis. The exhibition opened 30th March and ran from 31st March – 10th April 2019.

The footnote opens out to 10m x 3m.

©2020 Coni Text