In this article an artist and an academic consider how the idea of subjectivities manifests itself in community projects. Taking an example of an ‘artist-in-residence’ on a co-produced research project, the authors experientially consider how their work has been articulated and presented. We draw on a dialogue, jointly written on a research blog, to discuss this. We consider collective forms of theory building and whether it is possible to re-imagine theory within a future-oriented process. The approach is necessarily fragmented and, as within any co-produced enquiry, poly-vocal. We aim to open a window on an iterative thinking process moving between and across domains. We do not desire consensus or agreement; nothing is settled or sedimented within this text.