Archives for category: recycling

IMG_20180124_223711927

I need to write on these canvases earlier on than I usually do and this presents a problem…. what to write? Usually the paintings have formed and developed before I commit words to them. Obviously I have a sense of what they’re about but this usually becomes clearer, more in focus, the more I paint. Committing to words right now is an interesting one.

I know it has to be about the sense of place. Dartmouth is such an incredible space not just physically but for me mentally. My thought processes seem different; I can dream bigger and see clearer; problems seem like challenges and spur me on; I take time to stop and to ponder and to dig deeper than normal – and the irony is that I’m not writing this there 😦

Oooooo. Past diary extracts! Bingo! There’s one on 4th August this year, part of which would suit….. but the pieces are about more than that. The whole thing is a symbol, stitched, constructed, formed. What fabric am I made from? I love this quote from Daniel Christian Bradley in his book ‘Tailored Dreams’: “taking the fabric of our past, tracing out the frame of our purpose, cutting away the excess material, and then stitching it all together”, such a beautiful description of what I want to achieve. We sometimes pick, pick, pick at the things about ourselves that we dislike, or moments we have struggled through, almost to the point that we unravel. If only we could see the full picture and understand that even though some past events hurt like hell, they have shaped us, help form us, made us who we are today, and often they can produce beauty: that strength you find when you least expect it, that sensitivity to someone else, the walking alongside others who have gone through the same, resilience, determination, unwavering desire to live life in all its fullness. Beauty from scraps of material, off cuts, seams, joins.

I think I can start to write now…

IMG_20180124_223746160

 

 

Advertisements

IMG_20180124_135807276_HDR

Two things have happened over the last few weeks that has made me awaken. The fabulous and beautiful emporium gallery in Lichfield is closing down, and I had a phone call out of the blue. The first made me incredibly sad. Jannette and Amanda have become much more than excellent gallery curators – they have become friends and their advice to me over the years has been invaluable. They have always been welcoming, encouraging and positive about my work and I am so sad that their dream might be temporarily put on hold. I have absolutely no doubt that they will be back and stronger than before, but it has made me think – this was the only venue that supplied my work, now there is no other and that made me get of my backside and look around. I’ve no idea why I haven’t approached another gallery, probably because I was only producing enough to supply to one. But time to look around and see if there are opportunities I’ve not thought of.

The second was a conversation out of the blue with a complete stranger who had bought my work in the past. I think when you create you sometimes forget where pieces end up. These ended up in north London and it was such a thrill to talk to this woman and see the pieces again en situ, like being reunited with an old friend. Ironically I may have made a new one in the process and it has made me value myself and what I do again.

So, armed with ideas and an ounce of self belief I went to the shed! SO pleased with what I’ve done today. The start of three paintings that will eventually be coastal pieces. I’m so in love with Dartmouth, and it will be brilliant to create some work in which I can celebrate that.

IMG_20180124_140751528

Brought the pieces inside to give them half a chance to dry before I gesso them tonight. Excited again 🙂

 

image

Today has been a good day already..in fact yesterday was rather splendid as well, in a ‘I ticked off the list of things I needed to do’ kind of way rather than in a world event way.  I’ve continued playing with rags and the idea that something discarded can become something new and even precious.

I’ve played a lot with wrapping the rags around different types of spheres and am pleased with the results, pleased enough to keep going in this direction for now. By adding the text the pieces are becoming more scroll like, unraveling a secret or a piece of wisdom. I like this, but experimenting with the type, amount and size of text now.

broken-pieces-iv

Looking back over my artwork I have noticed that I often use material or stitching within the composition, making or stitching together material scraps and paper to form my own material like the piece above, or using important or significant material within the work, like in the piece below which incorporates pieces of my wedding dress material alongside the Terry’s nappies that my Mum placed me in and kept from when I was a baby. I think sometimes you don’t realise a theme in your work unless you revisit and look again at the work created.

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

I was startled to see how often I use material. Each time the reason for use is different and significant. Recently ideas for artwork have started to form around the use of filthy rags.

The Japanese word ‘boro’ means tattered rags, clothes that have been patched and repatched. It is linked with severe poverty and yet the current fashion ironically incorporates a similar method.

4,000 unwanted babies were left at Foundling Hospital between 1741 and 1760. The mother would often leave a piece of material cut from the clothing she was wearing to serve as a form of identity if she ever wanted to reclaim the child and this material was kept with the hospital’s paperwork for the child.

The sense of identity wrapped up in the clothes we wear or keep for sentimental reasons.

All of these thoughts are linked and yet very separate. No idea where this will lead but ideas are starting to form.

Images below are of past work incorporating material spanning work from 1999 through to last year.

This slideshow requires JavaScript.