Thursday, 29 December 2011

Empire de Tartarie

As promised, I am exposing the new title of current work that is fixed around the landscapes of my current research. I will slowly start to reveal the cosmic identities that are contained within this Empire as well as show symbols of travel that each identity uses in unison with one another. These identities are interconnected and have insight to a world to which they cannot escape.

Tuesday, 20 December 2011

The Christmas break is almost here and I have been getting things together for the last (Now that would be) Telling show in January at Transition, opening on the 14th and running until the 5th February. The works are complete and I am running back and forth with ideas for the overall 'look' of the show.

Catherine and I collected the works from Ickworth House last week and it was sad to see them down as well as say goodbye to the House and I now have an extremely full home studio with a pending visit to Wysing over the next few weeks to relinquish it all to a new home. The transient aspect of these shows will hopefully mean that I will revisit these works soon and maybe sell or rework them in some way.

The project that runs over the winter months has meant that I have been involved in all kinds of filmic matter and I am pleased to announce that the fantastic science fiction writer Liz Williams is coming up with the story/script which sounds extremely exciting. This will mean that I am to source actors/performers as well as a film maker to run with my directorship in 7 (for now) secret locations in North Norfolk. There will be a publication (thank you Norfolk County Council) and a show over the summer months at Aid and Abet next summer.

I am working through a couple of new proposals having worked up one pretty major one over the last two weeks. I really hope this will be successful as its extremely exciting in content and will include some really great collaborations with some great people, so fingers crossed.

I have got my head into some research where artwork is evolving slowly as well as a written piece as well as plotting and planning, so between the festivities I will be continuing with this. I have to say that I am feeling really positive overall, I have a really good feeling about next year as 2011 was demanding on so many levels.

So onto new ideas, a fresh start and hopefully new opportunities...

Wednesday, 7 December 2011

A rural idyll

I have recently rescued a Golden Saluki year old hound which has meant that I have been out in the countryside walking (well, in truth running) and meeting new creatures along the way. The photograph above is one of them. We have named him 'Cyril the sad lonely bear'. Yesterday there was a child's scarf levitating on some reeds, I must remember to photograph that next time.

The research for my winter filming is steadily moving forward and a trip up to the North Norfolk coast will happen imminently in a bid to get away from the excesses of this festive period.

Whilst on this festive note, today Annabel and I shared a sad christmas cracker (just the one) over our sad school christmas dinner of roast turkey (Annabel) and yet another jacket potato (me). We laughed at the non funny 'What does a tree and a dog have in common?' joke, Answer: BARK (a fitting context for me and my rural idyll) and spent a brief moment trying to work out whether there was a 'no expenses' spared gift inside. At first we believed it was empty but no, to our surprise we discovered a pale, almost transparent sad little green figure that looked depressingly at its feet with folded down wings and a look of despair.
Well that's another Christmas over with in the workplace this year.
(Apparently, the dinner has happened this week instead of next as they have lots of other things to be getting on with next week (words from a dinner lady?) what? )

Ah this Merrie England.

At this point in time I am trying hard not to be completely absorbed by the beast and am mid way plotting the show at Transition (NTWBT) in January with the work mostly done. Tomorrow night Now that would be (Telling) goes to 100 Charing Cross Road to be part of an event featuring writers and novelists of varying genres and we are hoping to produce a bound publication to complete the project.

I have recently been applying for funded things again and putting proposals together in a bid to pull next year into shape and I am very excited about quite a few of them. The body of research I have been working on has become all consuming and I hope to be at the point where I step back to making work again after a rest from working solidly for many many months for NTWBT and Monte.

My next posting will hopefully contain new ideas, show at least one new work and as always be a little evasive.

Thursday, 24 November 2011

Is there an interested film maker out there?

As usual, the things I am pondering over are quite disparate in nature. These include salts, little men, ponies, concrete, karate and human pelts.

I am working through some ideas with some great artists on some other ventures for next year.

I am pleased to announce that the fantastic science fiction writer Liz Williams has agreed to work with me over the winter.

I am working on new ideas to get some funding for projects as the future is bleak on the teaching front, although I have been offered additional sessions at West Dean and will be giving a talk at an undisclosed venue in the New Year.

I am reading some great books, albeit at the same time, but then that is quite usual.

I will be planting myself at 100 Charing Cross Road, London on the night of 8 December (7 - 9pm) where work from NTWBT will be on show. I have very little knowledge of this NEW AUDIENCE but I am assured it will be fun (lets hope they will be gentle).

I am also on the look out for someone quite special:
Is there a fantastic film maker out there that wants to work with me on a short film over the winter months on the Norfolk Coast? As usual no big pot of cash but there are a few pennies and the story line will be amazing and it will be certain to be open to experimentation and humour along the way? If so, send me an email

Thanks for reading.

Sunday, 13 November 2011

Awaiting further instruction

And so..
My foot is now off the accelerator and I have unduly and rather predictably caught a cold, but never mind. Recovering now, my thoughts turn towards creating a new body of work that will contain the works I have made for (Now that would be) Telling. At the moment, I see them a stars floating in the sky that need to be captured and pulled into shape, although I don't know what that will entail as yet. Much more work to be done there. The next showing will be in london on December 8th and then again in London in January.

Tomorrow I am meeting up with another artist and curator to discuss an idea and even a future something, so more on that later. I then move onto Wysing that day to have a meeting about our ROAM project which is in the research and development stage over the winter. We are coming together to discuss all that we have one so far, so it will be great to catch up with them all after a very long absence regarding former project discussion. And that is all.

The Wilmore Fellowship is again gathering itself for the selection of works by chosen artists who have asked to be considered for the contemporary collection. This will no doubt be a lengthy process with Lord Wilmore, but will be so worth it in the end.

I head into the winter with the possibility of finally having the time to get my head around new ideas which should mean that I will be at Wysing more, making new work and thinking about future possibilities, collaborations and shows. This always seems so scary when the work load has been so epic, particularly as it has been for around the last seven or eight months or so, but I realise it is well overdue and is looked on with eagerness. I await further instruction.

Sunday, 6 November 2011

Wonderment, heavy or otherwise

Yesterday, (Now that would be) Telling opened at A la Ronde in Devon. On my return to this fantastic house I have realised that it has taken complete ownership over everything I have been doing over the last few months as well as everything I foresee coming out of my creative self in the upcoming months. I am obsessed. The architecture of this strange structure and the density and quality of the objects held within are leaving me in a state resembling floatation, mesmerised by wonderment and curiosity. There is indeed more work to be done.

The interview with Saatchi online went public this week
which I am told is "good", "revealing" and "epic", so take from it what you will. I have feelings of inner delirium when I hear back my own words, so its hard to analyse from my viewpoint with such things.

This upcoming week is meeting heavy.
I head again to London twice this week to see shows, to transport students and to have a meeting with the curator of the Baring Archive and fellow Wilmorian's to discuss working with their collection. I then move on to Cambridge to have a meeting about a meeting next week with an artist and curator to discuss work we have been working on over the last few months. This then moves on to another meeting about where our projects are in terms of the ROAM collective, who are working on filmic works ideas over the winter months.
Time to clear out my head.

Saturday, 29 October 2011

Life certainly is peaches

I am recovering from looking into the eyes of sheer terror more times that I had imagined in a small passing of time this week.

After completing a significant amount of work in my week away whilst supposedly 'resting', the guilt ridden and quite honestly exhausted friend the laptop, mysteriously found itself immersed in a sticky liquid of peach juice one dark and quiet evening probably through overuse on one hand and under use abuse on the other.

With guilt therefore comes shame.

Please now imagine the scenario of being woken from a restful slumber of contentment, by being stared at hard in the face with a fast and tear heavy confessional from an distraughtly engulfed juice thrower, and then (much sooner rather ordinarily expected) having an outer body experience listening to the sounds of the self from a more neanderthal unexpected kind with sounds of gnou and mongolian throat singer wrapped up in choral rhapsody with pain and anguish.

I now diverge.
The next day was spent busying ourselves in an attempt to divert mayhem (and quite possibly a crime scene) that involved travelling across hot deserted plains in taxi's that should have been condemned many times over. That said, a different type of terror passed our eyes at scaring speeds and a sense of heightened danger clearly put everything else in perspective.

We are now home, all is well and the laptop has forgiven us of all our sins.

Monday, 24 October 2011


The last post was a while ago as I headed into a foray of work, keeping up with all things A La Ronde, research for a new proposal, presentations and talks at Dr Johnsons. With extremely tight deadlines there was very little room for manoeuvre before heading off for a week's rest in Essaouira, Morocco, which is where I am writing from now. I have had a couple of days rest and have now completed a written piece up in the terrace room, an ochre coloured hideaway which has been ideal to get away from the hub bub of daily Moroccan life. This place is rich with trade, colour and boys that say 'hello' at every opportunity. It is refreshing to think that places like this still exist away from the homogenised feel of the UK with its wall to wall failing retail outlets and branding of the most banal kind.
I am completing a couple of last minute things for A La Ronde as well as working on this exciting proposal and it seems fitting with each of these tasks to be researching ideologies of magic, class, travel and race whilst residing for a very short time in a coastal town of foreign origins. This seems like the most appropriate way to get away from the norm although not particularly chosen for those reasons at the outset.
With this in mind I travel back in my mind to 18th century travel and wonder at how it must have felt living and discovering new things amongst foreign locations at such a time. I doubt if things have changed that much.

Friday, 7 October 2011

I move on

We were very lucky to have caught good weather for the PV's of Treasure and Dr Johnson's before what is now a distinctly chilly autumn air outside. I have a list as long as anyone else's arm of things to achieve over the next few days but with teaching over with this week, the rest of my time has been free to put my head down and work.

I have been wrapped up with a group presentation mainly this week, to which I have finally and rather exhaustedly wrestled to the ground. The thought of sitting down and doing it was as ever bigger than actually getting on with it but as I have mentioned before, I like to stick my head in the sand until I HAVE to address things. Whether it's an excuse to not face the inevitable, or whether its the thrill of working right up to the edges of sanity, I have never known, but it is definitely an inherent trait to accumulate black circles under the eyes and a distant persona to boot.

What I do know is that it's stressful and the idea of sleeping under a heavy book is much more attractive yet rarely achieved. I am pulling a few favours and involving others in this one too.

I move on.

Work for A La Ronde is about to properly commence with research started and ideas starting to flow. The writing, as ever is beautiful, and working with a science fiction writer for the first time is particularly exciting. The text is broken down into eight due to the nature of the building and other factors and there are ghostly references throughout as well as nods to black magic and whispering girls. A La Ronde itself is a particular favourite with its upstair shell grotto and Point-In-View chapel that housed girls for a 'decent' education.

I haven't got long as I am slipping away for a well earned rest towards the end of October, so things will need to be together and moving forward quite soon.

(Now that would be) Telling is 3/5's of the way in with three houses opened and two more to go. I will be giving a talk at Dr Johnson's with Hallie Rubenhold on the 20th October to talk about the project, the work and our practices as well as work in the future. It's free, so come along if you can to experience the house, the garret and what we have both been up to.

I am waiting on another couple of things, but cannot reveal them as yet. I will when I can, I promise.

Sunday, 2 October 2011

What an odd lot?

I have had a fraught week of meetings, teaching and finishing off trails of titles, photographs and things for the media for the next leg of (Now that would be) Telling at Dr Johnson's House in London as well as complete works for "Treasure', the next chapter of 'The Count of Monte Cristo'. It was a mad dash late of Thursday afternoon that I set off in the heat towards London to deliver the works to both venues. One huge job done.

The next morning was a bus journey to Fleet Street, stopping off to find the printer of the brochure for NTWBT. I was rather relieved in retrospect that we had decided to instal first at Dr Johnson's House early on Friday morning as with the unexpected rise in temperature over the last few days, it meant that by the time I would complete and then wind over to Peckham for the installation of Treasure then most of the work would be done before I melted into a puddle. The pressures of this however took their toll a bit with me as I was in a complete daze mid evening at Treasures opening and showing signs of odd behaviour (I apparently moved a light that was highlighting Mimei's painting and placed it over a triangle of treasure that we had created on the floor over the day. Such an action to my thinking, should have resulted in a big slap from Mimei, but she was thankfully too polite to tell me off). Other fellows like Annabel fainted on Friday which resulted in her not making the PV and later on Alex also had the collywobbles, pre private view, en route to talking at TAP in Southend. What an odd lot? I move on....

Sunday proved to be move relaxed after sleeping in the comatosed shape of a crucifix at Cathy's house on Saturday night. After a day of not eating or drinking enough, I needed the rest. We had a few visitors over the day some of which we knew and some one which we didn't. Alex headed over in the afternoon to keep me safe (apparently) after leaving Annabel to sleep off her exhaustion. We ate biscuits and drank gallons in order to keep our strength up and somehow we managed to find our way home.

Today I have been writing.
Tomorrow is the private view of (Now that would be) Telling, Dr Johnsons.

Friday, 23 September 2011

Blackamoor love triangle

Tonight I am staring at a box which should contain a very expensive print on aluminium for Dr Johnsons House. I hope to open it soon.

All other works for this show are complete, so its cotton gloves on and tweezers to collage this last yet major piece up to complete the works for this show. I have been looking at Blackamoor jewelry for this leg of the project, inspired by Dr Johnson's servant and heir Francis Barber. Exotic and mysterious Blackamoor jewelry was a sought after and expensive addition to the collections of the rich in the 19th century. Believed to hold protective powers guarding against evil spirits, this is particularly relevant to the written works and research for this House and its inhabitants. The rest of the pieces I have made are small personal artefacts and tokens for what can only be described as historical evidence of an unexpected love triangle for Francis Barber, his wife and a mysterious link from his past.
I hope to own a piece of Blackamoor jewelry one day.

This week I went to see the Jerwood Drawing Prize as well as scoot around the Modern for things I may have overlooked before. The Jerwood Drawing prize I particularly enjoyed for its seemingly celebratory attempt at representing all types of contemporary drawing with an eclectic mix of obsessional approaches to the miniscule, repetitive gestures of mark making and the sharing of an idea. It was fab.
The Modern, I skipped through all floors, looking at new artists photography, the work of Diane Arbus and some surrealist pieces that I hadn't seen before in painting form and sculptural form. I also liked the Dark Humour room, with pieces by Louise Bourgeois and the Chapman brothers to name two that I had overlooked before. It all made me want to run away, get in the studio and paint for the first time in a few years, but sadly I dont have the time right now. Maybe one for later eh?

Today I had a mini meeting with the local Art School which was fruitful in terms of setting up what I hope is an interesting proposal for my students this year. I am finding it so hard to work in a building that makes me feel ill (distinct lack of air and far too many artificial lighting units), so I am trying to find positive ways of working elsewhere. The student experience this year has been slashed even further with very few hours to teach very little, so I am desperately trying to get new ideas off the ground in an attempt to be positive, with networking opportunities for them as well as open their eyes to what is around them. To kick this off I have been asked to donate an object to stimulate ideas of cultural exchange, communication and display. I think I am going to make something, as I am currently making a lot of new work that is on the edges of what an object is or can be.

This week I need to get a move on with making works for Wilmore House's next show, 'Treasure' which opens at Asylum. These are going to be drawings that reflect the works of the others that are showing in the space. We are also going to work on mini residencies over the next weekend to attempt to respond to the space. And so, back to that unopened box.....

Monday, 19 September 2011

Post Folkestone Nautilus

Folkestone has been fun. As well as showing at the B & B space, we also managed to run around and see quite a few things too. Particular favourites for me were Martin Creeds sound piece 'Work No. 1196' in the beautifully preserved victorian Leas Lift which made me, in all its simplicity, smile. Olivia Plender's work in the Masonic Hall titled 'Are Dreams Hallucinations During Sleep or Hallucinations Waking' was particularly enjoyable for its layered content, layered context, 'props' and in depth research that ticked all my interests in secret societies and interesting historical characters. And lastly Charles Avery's 'Sea Monster' viewed lying decomposed on the floor made from a multitude of other animals skin, skeletons and bodily traces surrounded by drawn works that outlined geographies in his imaginary island placed in the library, a seemingly appropriate setting for the geneology of his chosen subjects.

'The Unknown', the next chapter of the Count of Monte Cristo, was made up of showing work from each artist on rotation, every hour and a half, to create a revolving show made up of many parts. Running over two days was a good length of time to get everything seen in what was effectively a shop window. We each chose a character to work with, either one from reality or one from our imagination, that relayed part of the story from the book in some imaginative form.

Altogether, we created portraits, text pieces, objects and prints of unknown voyages, discoveries and adventures past. At the same time we tweeted, plotted, mapped and discussed our next voyage 'Treasure' which will be seen at Asylum, off the Old Kent Road in two weeks time in London.

Thursday, 15 September 2011

Concerned and contained for their own safety, truly

I am part packed up with jellies, glass and porcelain for a careful car journey tomorrow as I head towards Folkestone and the opening of The Unknown at the B & B Project Space. Cathy has arranged very kindly for us to stay at what looks like a scaled up white washed sandcastle with a grandiose flag on top, so it should be a great opportunity to discuss our further ventures with the Count and Wilmore House

This week has been a fusion of elation, excitement, exhaustion, glumness and mundanity which has had to coexist with continuing to work as much as is humanly possible. I have arranged for the main work at Dr Johnson's to be printed and mounted by the 27th of this month, which leaves a very small window of time to rework, complete and repackage for the opening. This should be just about manageable if nothing else crops up. The written text has been flying around all week being tweaked, proof read and reread again to allow for Povi at PresentPerfect to lay his hands on it for completion. It all looks and reads beautifully, so another written piece will be revealed at the opening on the 3rd. The smaller works are to be contained for their own safety (all explained at a later date) and are very nearly complete, with a couple of additions generously being donated by new friends and as well as this I am starting to compile materials and ideas for Asylum and A La Ronde.

Last weekend I volunteered myself to help out at Wysing's annual music festival for the end of the Department of Psychedelic Studies. Due to recent busyness, I hadn't had too much time to check out who was performing before hand but I met a couple of new people and although alot of what was going on was not particularly to my taste, what I did see was loud, in your face, quiet, sensitive and all jolly psychedelic if not a little Woodstock. Very enjoyable.

Earlier this week, I had a visit and interview at my studio at Wysing for Saatchi online magazine with a lovely blonde that I met at the station with what seemed like never ending legs. This was fun to do, and she seemed to understand my ramblings, although I always find this form of discussion far too revealing in many ways when you start to reflect upon your own working practice with others. I am told that it is rarely cut down and will be published quite soon.

Anyway, enough for now.

Friday, 9 September 2011

brethren of the coast hear so

Last Friday was the opening to Pulp Fictions at Transition Galley E8. I spent the day warming up in Green Park waiting for a pelican who never arrived. I then met up with Annabel and Alex and headed off with Annabel to the library at the National History Museum to look at some beautiful prints, wow. I think they sensed our presence as we were groaning in ecstasy at each page that turned, SO NOISY. I think the librarian secretly shared each moment with us as she was very smily and attentive to our obvious presence. By the time we exited Alex had melted into a virtual puddle in the sweltering cafeteria and so we mopped him up and headed swiftly out to a place in the shade. Moving on to Bethnal Green in a slow amble we headed to Transition to the opening. The rest of the evening was spent jumping in and out of the gallery space as the work was fantastic, the company cheery and the space airless.

This week has been a mixture of personal demands along with making works for Dr Johnson's house. All things Folkestone are complete and ideas for treasure at Asylum are in place so I will move straight onto these after Dr Johnson's is complete. As part of my research for the work at Dr Johnson's House in London, I have stumbled across some truly inspiring pieces which as ever are secret until the opening. I am making one large piece which is very much to do with a story within the story to reflect the qualities that the writer for this venue, Hallie Rubenhold has revealed as well as making smaller objects as an addition to the collection in the house to date. These works although small in number are complex things and I feel under strain to complete these as soon as possible in order for the work for Asylum to get started. Both shows open on the same weekend and my recent workload has pushed things back a little, although I do usually panic a little unnecessarily as part of the process of making work.

Ideas for A La Ronde are in place. It's just a bit tricky to find the time to start these as yet, so fingers crossed that I wont be too exhausted to start at the end of this busy time.

I am looking forward to Folkestone and I am anticipating having to make some work for 'Treasure' there as the works will be very portable. Cathy, Mimei, Alex, Annabel and myself are showing work on rotation over the weekend of the 16th and 17th, so it should be fun to make work whilst invigilating, or at least that is my plan. I have made some pieces that as ever are a little bit off centre, but hopefully if I ever get around to writing about them, then hopefully it will become a little more transparent to whoever happens to wander by.

Here is a sneeky peek at one of the pieces.

Tuesday, 30 August 2011

Turning the blue dragons

This past week has been a good one. I have been working solidly for the last couple of days on all things Folkestone which have surprisingly worked well. Today I should complete the work and then move on to the idea of everything worthy of 'treasure' for the next chapter at Asylum in Peckham at the end of September while I am on a Monte roll.

This week I also hope to start to work on my final ideas for Dr Johnsons House. I have spoken at length to Hallie Rubenhold, the writer for this third leg of the project and I am just waiting to see her last draft to attach symbolic gestures to the pieces I am thinking of making.

This past week I have also made a piece for A la Ronde for The National Trust to use in a poster and I am waiting to see the outcome when it is complete.

I have a received a couple of really exciting emails this week too regarding new developments of my work, which must for now, remain secret, but all will be revealed over the next few weeks when they come to fruition.

Lets hope this week carries on like the last one as I have superstitiously turned the blue dragons in anticipation. Don't ask.

Tuesday, 23 August 2011

The Silly Sailor

I am currently making a body of work for Folkestone Triennial for the next chapter of The Count of Monte Cristo titled 'The Unknown'. I am currently making both 2D and 3D objects for this show that will be placed in the window of the B & B Project Space in Folkestone, as well as a sound piece and maybe even a short film. Here is the link to the blog

Adopting the guise of 'The Silly Sailor' the work is loosely based around the history of Lady Mary Killigrew who hailed from Suffolk, moved to Cornwall, was brought up as a boy, was confused by her own sexuality, cussed like a man and had a penchant for bare knuckled fighting. The Urban dictionary references the term 'The Silly Sailor' as 'A man who performs sexual acts and has a talent for interior decorating' and so the fusion will continue.

There will be nods to piracy, unidentified texts, sailors valentines and mystical adventures.

Expect to find digitally manipulated images, flamboyant household objects, symbolic references to sacred geometry and a map to hunt for everything golden.

Sunday, 14 August 2011

Dear Mr Ruskin

Last week was spent travelling and installing the next leg of (Now that would be) Telling at Brantwood House in Cumbria, John Ruskin's final home and eventual resting place. With Catherine's broken ankle and Lucinda's later sharp exit from the London riots, I was nervous that I would be left on my own to curate, talk and describe the work but with Lucinda's decision to flee with extra possessions to the house, I was somewhat relieved that she had kept her word to be there.

After a smooth instal, the eventual opening was well attended and supported by many generous and lovely people, keen to have the work explained in detail and yet curious enough to really explore the works with their hidden symbolism embedded from within the Lucinda's writing and 'The Ethics of the Dust' by Ruskin himself.

The works have been enjoyable to make, branching out from portraiture into making drawn objects from key text and I am planning to take these ideas further.

We were fortunate enough to be allowed to stay in Ruskin's private apartment hidden behind doors marked PRIVATE for three nights and four days. I took a dear friend with me for companionship on the long six hour drive up there as well as reassurance in terms of staying in what was possibly the haunted part of the house.

I volunteered to sleep in Ruskin's bedroom where he had many and eventually the last breakdown of his mental health out of politeness and curiosity rather than bravery and fearlessness. I had previously been told that after what he believed to be his worst breakdown, even Ruskin refused to go back into this room for fear of what that room contained, so in order to deal with this situation, I asked little more.

I spent the first night lying very still as I had identified a motion sensor in the corner above the door and as my bed was opposing a mirrored wardrobe, I could see my reflection of wariness and it wasn't helping my imaginings. Eventually after a brief altercation on my part (only close friends know of my behaviour that night), I eventually drifted into sleep having decided to turn my back on the side of the room where I had known his bed to be.

After a brief sleep of about four hours, I woke and then this pattern remained for the rest of the stay with short sleep periods followed by adrenalin surges of enthusiasm and imagined conversations with the great man himself. I have been tired ever since.

On the last day of the stay I was conscious that Catherine had ordered me to take photographs of our accommodation, the audience and the works in context, so I grabbed the camera and set to work on the accommodation and works in situ. The audience part had been tricky as we were multi tasking, but some were managed nevertheless.

It wasn't until my return when I was showing my partner the photographs of the visit that I discovered one, very bleached out image among the many photographs that I had taken of Ruskin's bedroom that I stayed in. It is not explained, as due to my incompetence with photographic processes I had my digital SLR set on auto throughout.

And so, I show you two photographs to ponder. One is the bleached original version and one is the same image darkened, in an attempt to see what was going on in that room at the time.

In other news, the project may or may not be selected to be reviewed on radio. We have been asked our whereabouts for next week as to our availability for Front Row, it will be AMAZING if that happened, but still great if we don't, at least to have been considered is very flattering.

Work for Pulp Fictions at Transition gallery has been delivered and a draft written piece for A La Ronde has been received, all of which is very exciting. The author for Dr Johnson's House is working flat out and I am to start work on this as soon as I have made work for Folkestone triennial and works for the show at Asylum. My ideas are coming through for the Roam project as are new drawing pieces for an ongoing project.

My head is spinning from further reading for research purposes and I really must find time to work on this more this coming week. I have been selected to be in a publication based in New York, which is also exciting but most importantly I have managed to secure a weekly holiday in Morocco to feel a little warmth and find headspace to think about my ongoing practice.

I have much writing to do, so I really should exit at this point as this has been a fast paced blogpost, even for me..

Tuesday, 2 August 2011

So now my website (and this blog) is all new. I am, a little reserved about the white, but will see if it warms over time.
I had a great meeting at Aid & Abet in Cambridge yesterday with the artists collective ROAM. We were discussing ways in which we are to move our now arts council funded project ROAMING along. Whilst there, I saw some great work from many friends that have inhabited the space for the duration of July and although the show/residencies had finished a couple of days ago, it was good to catch up with the remnants of what had been.
Brantwood is all but complete, although I have to write up the titles and prices list over the next couple of days. The work for Dr Johnson's has been discussed and confirmed, but I need to put Telling aside for a short while to complete works for Pulp Fictions, Folkestone Triennial and Asylum for September. Work for Transition Gallery is almost there and drawings for a couple of projects are being worked on as I write.
I am really excited about the ROAM project as it allows me to work on ideas for a film, which is going to be extremely challenging but exciting if the collaborations all fall into place. It will be a great project to work on over those dark and cold months with hopefully a outcome by the spring for an extensive showing in the summer of next year. Lets hope it all works out. There should also, support pending, be a small publication at the end of it, which I am really keen to express my ideas and concepts behind this work, as it seems like a natural way to progress my work right now.
In between my thoughts and processes that are both old and new I am working on a new narrative that will hopefully house the portraits that I have been making over the last few years. This at the moment is a visual mapping of a place where these works may or may not exist in the future. I am reading many excerpts from books at the same time to enable the creation of this place, whether it be fictional or real. What I am sure about is that I am excited to be making work that is more personal to me as it has been a struggle over the last couple of months to make all of my doings cohesive.
Exciting times ahead perhaps?

Monday, 25 July 2011

I have completed six portraits for Brantwood and have almost completed six accompanying drawings relating to the text I have been researching and Lucinda's writing. I am looking forward to spending some time at Ruskin's house to focus on making some more drawings for work ongoing. It is planned that Lucinda will be staying in Ruskins old bedroom and Catherine and I will be above the studio space occupied by Ruskin and his aquaintances, so REALLY exciting!
This weekend saw in a well needed visit to Wysing for the open weekend and open studios. I had some great conversations with many people about my current work that was on show in the studio as well as meet new people.
It has been great news to find out that ROAM, the artists collective I am working with has been awarded an Arts Council grant to enable myself and the others in the group to get some film ideas off the ground. This summer I hope to take a visit or two to North Norfolk to source people, groups and sites that I hope to film with. Very exciting! In anticipation I have been working on some experimental film works trying out equipment I have and equipment I will need. I am really looking forward to working on this over the autumn months.
After Brantwwod, I will be working on some drawings for Pulp Fictions at Transition, making new work for Salty Sailors for the Folkestone Triennial and making small hidden pieces for Ayslum, London. Beyond that I will then return to making work for Dr JOhnsons House London and then works for A La Ronde.
I hope over the next couple of days to get an additional blog up about subconscious drawing and will be inviting people to contribute as well as update my website, which is due a large overhaul.

Sunday, 10 July 2011

De(constructive) right of passage

I have been in bed for days.
Tired from recent activities, Telling at Ickworth is now in place and open and I am now working on pieces for Brantwood. The text from Lucinda is very revealing of the character of Ruskin and people in the shadow of Ruskin and I hope to have them all completed by the end of this week.
The launch at Ickworth was eventful with two openings, one private and one public, with Ben reading his text and Jamie revealing his beautifully crafted narrative cake. I am extremely happy with it all as the staff have been really supportive throughout and the volunteers had many questions to ask at the public opening. This is, as far as I am aware the first time that Ickworth has opened its doors to contemporary art and the challenge of getting it to work and be in place for thorough questioning was a really demanding but rewarding journey. Placing contemporary art in an unfamiliar setting is another beast altogether than showing in an art related context and is one that has made me question the validity of the work, its context and its value to a greater extent. This has been above all a personal challenge to place my work out of its ordinary setting asking new audiences to comment and raise questions that I hadnt already thought about in many ways.
Most of all it seems that the initial exposure has got people talking again about the past Hervey family and their eccentricities in a colourful and I hope celebratory way bringing the place to life again in a new and exciting way. I have had some very complimentary comments about the work in situ as well as some derogatory comments. This is all I can ask for in terms of REAL critique of my current practice.

Friday, 24 June 2011

Crystal Waters

A lot of things have happened since my last post.
Invitations have now been sent out for Ickworth, Harewood works are being tweeked, works are being packed and new works are beginning to arise for Brantwood with careful consideration. Alongside this, writings are flying past my eyes, teaching is still going on, MA modules are being worked on and I am to reapply for my existing teaching post in the next week (extremely short notice) or opt for redundancy. All of this combined is proving to be exhausting and likened to a rollercoaster of highs and lows all to be absorbed as the norm as a practicing artist and jobbing lecturer. It is an odd sensation to be held in high regard in some circles and tossed away by others.
On a brighter note a dear friend has been offered an amazing opportunity over the water and I salute her. I hope this is the beginnings of something amazing and beautiful and that she will look back at these dark days in wonderment and good humour! Go Girl!

Saturday, 18 June 2011

The structure of Telling

The works for Harewood are accumulating and I really must take some good photographs of them for the house, the family at Harewood and my records. I have this week been to London twice, once with a new cohort of students and once for my own pleasure, unwinding, accumulating and then going to the National Portrait gallery for a performative talk in the evening. Meeting up with old friends has made me realise how detached I have been from my studio at Wysing over the past few months in preparation for the Telling project, however depending on a set of circumstances, I hope to be back there soon.
The bits I have truly enjoyed this week have been to catch up with friends, have meetings with collectives and curators, the trips out and talking about new projects with other people have led to an exciting if tiring week alongside working on my own work every spare minute I have.
There is however a distinct possibility that I may have more free time quite soon, so new and innovative approaches to making new work could be on the horizon. I have to say that I feel, as ever, very positive about this prospect and could be quietly wishing it on.

The ad for Telling is now in the June/July/Aug 2011 copy of Frieze magazine.

Sunday, 12 June 2011

Riding the crest of the wave

I am for a few weeks more being very secretive about new works that will be installed at Ickworth. The designers Povi and Ivan have made beautiful invitations, presentations and brochure text layout for the project.
I for now, are continuing to make a series of 27 for Harewood, amalgamating portraits, the story by Pamela and three dimensional concepts to make a high impact on the Cinnamon Room where I hope these works will be installed.

Sunday, 5 June 2011

The work for Ickworth House is finally complete! I have managed to make 21 works in all, both two dimensional, 3 dimensional and object based with some that will have their own identity in the space and some that will be slipped into the pre existing collection. I have enjoyed it, although extremely exhausting, and I have had to stop myself from carrying on as there are so many exciting stories in that houses history, but I have to now concentrate on the works for Harewood. I really must speak to the maker of the cake that will also be in place for the opening too, to keep him up to date with what I have been making as much has come together over the last two weeks. I am hoping that this will be more straight forward in that I have a great story to work from and a clear idea of how I see the works in situ so hopefully I can maintain this pace of working in order for it to give me enough time to start and complete the works for Brantwood after that.

This is going to be a mammoth task as the houses in general are large and space is already filled in terms of their own collections however once work is underway I anticipate that the run through should be clear. I have received some great photographs of the space and the objects in Harewood and will start to put these ideas into place this week. As I do so, my mind will no doubt then turn to the third venue Brantwood and its fantastic surroundings. I am yet to receive the story from the writer for this one, so this will be very exciting indeed.

Outside of the Telling project I have been invited to participate in a show in London in August, will be a distant participant in a residency in the summer, works need to be started for the other Monte London show as well as works for Folkestone and I have been asked to submit an idea for something else in August as well as popping in a proposal to work on something very exciting for next year. Lets just hope that I can afford to do all this.

Wednesday, 1 June 2011

Bread, wine and the death of a landlord

I have recovered from the Limerick trip which was, as you would expect, a fairly busy weekend. The list of extra curricular events witnessed were:
A feisty drunk mother punching a member of her daughters communion party in the face without spilling a drop
A feisty drunk mother pestered the hotel staff continually in an attempt to start a fight for another hour and a half until the police were called
A small child got their arm stuck in a revolving door, which as you would expect, the communion party had lots to scream about
People face down in an unconscious state littering the streets after a rivaled game of rugby took place
Barcelona won a match to which I still don't know the opposing team
A wedding (with chocolate fountain) happened in the hotel foyer

And perhaps best of all...
A Canadian golf team played a drunken game of golf until 4am in the hotel foyer on my last nights stay - amazingly nothing was broken!
Oh yes, and
A rock and roll evening took place with guitars, singing and then further singing in sleep was heard in the wee hours from a friend sharing the same room
A long lost friend of a friend was hunted down for an emotional reunion in a pub where the landlord was then found dead upstairs

I think that is is.

The art fair was, unlike the activities of others, busy, serious and very professional. Well done to those that maintained this around all the chaos of the weekend. Well done Occupy Space!

Saturday, 28 May 2011

Lions Den

At present I am sitting in Limerick airport awaiting my bus into the city centre. I have had a busy week helping students install their final year show and have managed ti squeeze in a productive couple of days on work for Ickworth. As plans go, the work is looking really rather slick, much, as ever to my surprise. My practice always seems to contain an element of danger from a personal perspective as I enjoy making varying presentations that I have never done before. The six pieces I have been working on have managed to be successful and on my return I will finish these off, work on the smaller pieces and the objects and then it will be complete. Then onto the work for Harewood. For now, I will however be manning Lions Den, the next show of Monte at Occupy Space. Better run, the bus is five minutes away.

Tuesday, 17 May 2011

Ickworth work starts

I am tired.
For some reason unknown to me I am waking at 3am and 4am, wide awake and ready for work. I am however expected to teach long days around this and I have been pushed to keep it together for the last couple of days. I now have two days solid in the studio, so I hope to recapture where I left off at the weekend. I have since got materials rolling and have ordered some exciting things. I have clear ideas on what I am making, I have a certain number of component parts, I just need to get it all together in one place. Relying on other people is always difficult and you never quite get people to work at the same pace and so fingers are crossed that this will work out. I have very nearly completed the first series of portraits for Ickworth which has, for some reason been the hardest to squeeze out through my already full mind and I have been recently hampered by not having an A3 printer. It is my intention to see if I can justify buying one although it does seem extremely wasteful to part with my fantastic relatively new Canon A4 printer. I will just have to see.

I am plotting as to what to take with me to the art fair in Limerick in terms of work in a couple of weeks time. I am only taking hand luggage and I should by then be working on the Harewood work, so fingers crossed my plans work out. I now realise how large this project is in real terms. It is all consuming, both day and night.

I would however just like the opportunity to thank thus far the Arts Council for their kind support with (Now that would be) Telling as well as The National Trust, the contemporary Trust New Art arm of the Arts Council and National Trust, the additional three independent significant houses involved, and to all the people that have been involved in the project to date, of which there are many.

Sunday, 15 May 2011


I have spent time again at Ickworth today firming up in my head what will go where and how much work I need to make overall for the space. I found today a pair of one of the earls slippers and a dog collar in a box frame which need to go in to the show somehow I think. Work is forging forward for this and I need to go to the framers tomorrow to talk about shiny stuff, so its now feeling very real. While I was there today I managed to grab a couple of the Trust New Art leaflets featuring the Telling project too, so that was a bonus. All is pretty good right now, I just need to push on so I can start to get my head around work for Harewood.

Sunday, 8 May 2011

Leg of Monte, silly sailors and dark corners in the bag

Work has been up and then down at Rogue in Manchester with the next leg of Monte happening in Limerick as I mentioned previously. I have offered to help Transition over the latter weekend, the 28th/29th May which will mean a quick dash over after teaching on the Friday, a camp over somewhere in Cambridge that evening and two early flights there and back with just hand luggage, so the work I plan to make there will need to be small. It will involve a silly sailor I think.

The work for Telling is bobbing along with a quick flurry last week to nail my ideas and put them in the bag. I have worked like a crazy thing possessed to get all the other small jobs done in order to clear my path to making this work, so all is looking good right now. I have had two more very exciting contacts this week (this good weather is clearly bringing everyone out of their dark corners). It all looks promising so lets see.

Saturday, 30 April 2011


The Count of Monte Cristo: Conspiracy opened in Manchester on Thursday at Rogue Artists Studio Space and we found ourselves in the Guardian Guide today

We then had a meeting over breakfast to discuss the next shows, an art fair in Limerick at the end of May, a show at Asylum in London at the end of July and a showing of work at Folkestone Triennial in September

I have returned to a furious attempt at filing my studio at home into some kind of order in anticipation for continuing my work with 'Telling'. I have received a number of images and documents from the houses this week at my request and I am ploughing through the order things as I write. Tomorrow, I hope will be a very productive day.

The designers meanwhile are working on the public face of the project and writers are furiously working on exciting texts. I need to go searching for the Ickworth element of the project (currently secret) and all should be well on the way over the next week or so...

I had a very exciting phone call this week from an acquaintance who is going to introduce me to someone else at my studio at Wysing who would like to talk to me about a really exciting idea for next year. Cant wait to hear about that!

Sunday, 24 April 2011

Telling Ickworth and the Count

The Count of Monte Cristo: Island of True Stories has received a great review in an interface which made us all smile Plans are afoot in preparation for the next and third chapter and show, The Count of Monte Cristo: Conspiracy, which opens at Rogue Studio space, Manchester on Thursday 28th April . We have confirmed a slot in Folkestone Triennial and a London space in July as well as being part of an art weekend of events in Limerick at the end of May with Transition Gallery
I have started work on Telling Ickworth and hope to start picking up pace over the next few weeks. Harewood have now confirmed a July opening, so its busy time on my part from now until November. The designers are in (bit excited about this!) and plans are in place for making a cake. So exciting stuff indeed!

Friday, 15 April 2011

Prize Fighter

So, a quick catch up. What have I been up to? Not even I can remember..(hasty check on ical). Ah yes, I had a great day with Hallie at The Heinz Archive, then on to The V & A chasing a newly discovered object on my part and then onto a bit of drawing at The Natural History Museum, great day. I have been to The Sainsbury Centre looking at hairy braid and filmic wonderments, then onto a meeting with a collaborative artist, visiting her studio with plans afoot to make new work. Then two days in Cumbria with another writer visiting Grizedale Arts and a meeting with The Director to research further our ideas of how to make this part of the project happen. Prints, photograph, sugarcraft, cake meeting and a haircut later I am sitting here exhausted attempting to send my CV off to West Dean as well as some photographs. I have been fortunate enough to have been offered some work there next year and so a trip to their headquarters and London follow to check out a new gallery space this week. In the midst of all this work for Manchester slowly builds as well as materials and ideas for Telling. I am so excited that we have our designers Povi and Ivan onboard, cant wait to see what they offer Telling.
Monte has offered forward more shows in Limerick, London and Folkestone where I might attempt to find out more about Ruskins prize fighter. More on that later..and The Spring/Summer 2011 edition of Arty is a Count of Monte Cristo special.

Sunday, 3 April 2011


The work has been installed and the private view has now passed, so The Count of Monte Cristo at Exeter Phoenix is now open to the public until mid May. The next chapter at Rogue Project Space Manchester is 'The Conspiracy' opening for a short stint at the end of April 2011 and I have researched my next step carefully.

It now feels like spring time for Telling. Writers are stirring, houses are being revisited and the meta-narrative is forming nicely. I spend my travel time making copious notes and diagrams to make sense of it all and hopefully I will be able to relay my thoughts in a telepathic way to Catherine over the next few days before our next chat on Tuesday.

I am meeting Hallie again on Thursday for a spot of research at the Heinz archive which I am SO excited about. I have never visited, so I am hoping that what we are looking for is there! Its like looking for more treasure.

Saturday, 26 March 2011


The work has safely arrived in Exeter and I have spent the day sewing objects to leather clad plinths, writing and directing cave construction. I have had a restful last week escaping from the day to day and I feel all the better for it. The PV is on Thursday so I will head south again with Dover, Pearl, Thompson and Lomax to attend the PV on Thursday night.

After that the next show is in Manchester, opening on the eve of the Royal Wedding. I am currently making a series of drawings for Manchester, coercing the imaginary with the real, based on the first chapter "The Arrival", with the second "The Lost Chapters".

Lord Wilmore has been in contact regarding the upcoming shows and he is undecided as to whether he will be able to attend due to his pressing commitments with The House, so we will have to just wait and see. His Lordship has been sent digital copies of what we have managed so far and appears to be very keen to follow up his involvement in supporting us to make more work.

Beyond that I am to make contact with the writers for the Telling project and will be heading to Brantwood, Cumbria on 13th and 14th April with the writer and Dickens descendent Lucinda Hawksley. Material is accumulating.

Friday, 11 March 2011

nailing it

Hallie and I had a great meeting where we sat throwing ideas at each other for over an hour and half over a latte and a cappuccino, finally nailing our ideas down surprisingly quickly for two people that had had little sleep between them. We have planned a trip to a very exciting archive, more on that later.I left feeling elated that we had nailed the concept, the ideas behind the production and an exciting programme to boot.
I have since then finished the stalagmites for Exeter Phoenix and everything else for the show, which opens on April 1st. Outstanding is the work for the publication, which will need to happen over the weekend. I have the content, I just need to pull it all together. I start to look forward to the next show in Manchester as well as continue my pursuit for otherness and Telling. Informative times..

Tuesday, 8 March 2011

Raising a glass to those that remain nameless

I depart once more tomorrow to meet with Hallie about Dr Johnson. I have as yet had little time to donate to reading the book she has suggested, but it will be in my grip on the journey down. Work is complete for Exeter and arrangements have been made for the work to be picked up at the start of next week.
I have been working on a few things recently that have extended my ideas regarding the theatricality of my next project starting after Easter. The show in Manchester has now been arranged and the PV arranged conveniently for the eve of the wedding of those people that will remain nameless. We will no doubt raise our glasses as an excuse and head back to avoid the whole event the next day. I will then attempt to concentrate my efforts on Telling.

Thursday, 3 March 2011

I can see you but can you see me

Last week I visit Devon for a mini meeting with Matt at Exeter Phoenix and then onto A La Ronde with Catherine to meet the next writer attached to the project by this venue. We had a tour by Trevor our guide, who was extremely informative and I made copious notes which I still need to attach to the research overall. The writer Liz Williams was lovely and has some great initial ideas with how the story from A La Ronde may fit into the works I have proposed to make. I have a feeling that this one could really fit into not only the project but my practice overall, but I will have to wait and see.

The work for Exeter is almost together and I have finally worked out how the space will work overall last night. Extremely excited about all of this now, I have whizzed off some drawings to the gallery and I hope the tech is happy to help. It will take a bit of construction. The chapel at A La Ronde that we also peeked around was informative to the final decision about the space, so it all ties in nicely. Lets hope Matt agrees!

I have written a proposal this week which brings together my current work, my practice as well as another exciting venture which will kick off nicely after Christmas. I wont reveal any of it for a while due to the nature of the work, just keep watching.

Sunday, 20 February 2011

I have just returned from Yorkshire with a meeting with the author Jessica Hart and Harewood House. All is set to open in August and with Art in Yorkshire, supported by Tate partnership, the promotional leg of the show should be good for the summer. I am keeping silent about the proposed work for this project until we go public in March but all has now fallen smoothly into place with an opening each month with all venues and respective authors in place. I am fully immersed in the research element of the project, reading mountains of books and other research papers and the excitement and nerves are mounting.
I am also currently mid flow with subsequent works for the Fellowship of Willmore House and the works for two shows are almost complete. I have also recently had a meeting with another artist regarding a utopian manifesto and I am lagging behind with time to embark on new works for this, although its all carried around in my head for now. Once the work for the next two shows is complete, I will pursue these ideas with more gusto.
For now, I visit this week the next venue, just outside Exmouth with Catherine and the science fiction writer. This should prove to bring yet more ideas and discoveries, although I have quite firm ideas of outcomes for this particular venue. It will be another exciting week no doubt.

Saturday, 12 February 2011


This week has contained many things. On Thursday I met up with Catherine and the author Hallie Rubenhold at Dr Johnson's House, just off Fleet Street in London.It is tucked away surrounded by big businessess and to be frank is a small miracle to have survived all of the building that has obviously gone on around it for decades. The curator Stephanie was informative about the house which has already led me to more reading. The house again revealed a very exciting history that is secret from my audience for now but pertains to being another great leg of the project. I came away bursting at all the possibilities as well as a true sense of meeting some very generous and inspiring people. The pace of the day was steady although extremely wet and so I pursued a couple of shows in the East End that I found of particular interest as well as keep me dry. It was a great day out.

Work this week has been steady with a great deal of time spent on the internet buying component parts for the Manchester and Exeter shows. I have made a number of structures to contain work, found some great paper and bought spying devices. All has gone quite well, although I need to gather pace to get it all done in time. The 2D work is on the whole there, just need to frame the pieces that need it. Lists are being compiled. Now in full flow, the work needs to continue at a pace although time spent in a studio environment is restricted next week due to teaching commitments and a forthcoming meeting at Harewood House in Yorkshire on Thursday with travel up North on Wednesday. I will have to use my journey time well. I will be meeting the next writer for the first time which again, I am truly excited about. A completely different background and genre than Hallie, I hope to persuade her towards a leaning of more, more more!

Friday, 4 February 2011

I visited this evening, Ms Dover and Mr Pearl, both of which appear to have inherited the second dose of a heavy cold. Both appearing flushed with the weight of it all and Mr Pearl talked about his twisted underpants, I took it all in my stride.
Ickworth with Jamie this week has brought out my lavish tendencies. Talking above and below stairs, our informative guide led us through tales of the house and its basement with relative ease. The hard part is filtering it all to decide on what I am going to focus on.
The Trust new Art campaign is moving steadily forward unlike the practical side of my work. I have had a very experimental week where most of what I have attempted have turned out to be failures, so it is my intention to concentrate all my efforts into the 3D forms that I am trying to achieve. All the component parts are there, I just have to pull it off. Easy to say indeed.
The Exeter and Manchester shows are fast approaching, so I need to start to contain what is and what isnt going in. Sunday will be the day for great mastery of the thing I cannot seem to control. Just needs a little magic.
Next week involves my first visit to Dr Johnsons house. This should be good.

Friday, 28 January 2011

Food glorious food

I have been thinking and talking about food a lot lately. The Ickworth part of the project is fast moving and very exciting. I have taken Ben to see the house and gardens this week and I am hoping to take Jamie there also soon. Plans are afoot to recreate history in an edible form and the writing planned is truly enthralling whilst the scope for making new and exciting things is for now, gigantic. The enthusiasm met at the house is quite frankly a revelation to me and is more evidence that people inside institutional frameworks can act appropriately and with much kindness.
I have been attempting my own sugar and salt craft this week to disastrous effect, so back to the drawing board for a while so to speak. My drawn imaginary landscapes however have been a lot more enjoyable and a run around the show at Smiths Row in Bury St Edmunds three times over, a brief run around Bury Gardens as well as Ickworth have put fresh air into my lungs and have cleared a path through the grey fog of the day job. Hurrah.
In a week or so I start my own Grand Tour of the English landscape, meeting new writers and revisiting the houses involved in the project.

Sunday, 23 January 2011

Yesterday I visited Smiths Row to see the fantastic work of Pip & Pop with a friend. As well as seeing the work I mixed in a couple of mini meetings to which one extended to the early evening. Plotting and planning the next couple of weeks I am hoping to take Ben Moor to Ickworth to think through our findings and ideas. Catherine and I met up with him on a very cold day on the Southbank this week and he is onboard with the projects and has offered forward some great ideas in terms of story telling. This is SO exciting.
I have also asked another artist friend to make some culinary delights for the opening and he brought with him some beautifully illustrated ideas from exerpts from a book I have leant him. We had a lovely walk around the House in semi darkness just to give him an idea of the grounds. I hope to get him to meet the lovely people there soon and to inspect the interior. The project is now moving on a pace and Catherine has been brilliant in inviting a really exciting designer to pull the images and text together. I should hear back fro the NT this week about the images I have sent them, so hopefully that will be able to move forward too soon. More updates over the next few days..

Wednesday, 19 January 2011


Tomorrow I am meeting up with Catherine and the writer and actor Ben Moor to discuss our ideas for Telling. I am looking forward to this part of the project the most as I hope to be steered gently into the arms of some truly creative collaborators. Along with this I hope to get to see Miss Dover's show at Transition and Mr Pearls work at The London Art Fair as well as running past Five Hundred Dollars to collect unsold work. I did also sell work, so I am keen, as ever, to see who too. These snippets of information add to the backstories being written in my diaries that contain the secrets of gimp and his world.
I am hoping to hear from The National Trust this week about the print run and have booked a trip every week in February to other venues involved in Telling; so a lot of time will be spent discussing ideas and plotting with writers in Suffolk, Yorkshire, London, Devon and The Lakes. Its going to be great!
I hope tomorrow to start plotting my build for Exeter, I love plotting!

Sunday, 16 January 2011

Oh the joy

At last I have stopped momentarily. Last week was of epic proportions in terms of teaching, accounting, gallery visits, airports and making work. It reached a climax on Friday when I finally arrived home, climbed the stairs and headed straight for my pillow. I rested there for 11 hrs, true bliss. Why is it that so many deadlines come at the same time when I am behind in the first place? Urgh, never mind. Next week involves a trip next week to London town once more to visit and discuss our exciting project with the first writer and curator. Things are now moving forward a pace. I also having a meeting to discuss another part of the project on Friday with another artist which ssounds very promising indeed. The good people at The National Trust and their design company have asked me to tweek the work for the leaflet, so after photographing them tomorrow, they should be in the relevant in trays at the end of play tomorrow.
My plans for The Exeter show are moving on slowly and my purchase from ebay arrived safely on Friday. Now I just have to find the time to draw out a plan and then start to make. I hope to get to my away studio on Wednesday. I need to start building the frame first and that will take a bit of time as it will need to be portable in order for it to travel.
Exciting week ahead, looking forward to it alot.

Wednesday, 5 January 2011

Lord fanny and his crystallum mount

Things are moving on a pace. An exciting proposal for the summer has just been agreed and as soon as I am able the next meeting will take place to discuss things further. I have decided to make a structure to house my works for the Exeter show. I am therefore sourcing materials for this and hope to start making soon. Its is very exciting for me in terms of culminating my recent thoughts, so lets hope it works. if not, well, it will be warmer in my studio.
My research into The Herveys of Ickworth has involved buying a book to get to know the inhabitants more. Published in 2001, it is a relatively recent account of the activities there and is so far proving invaluable.
The Fellowship in which I now belong is starting to amass ideas for forthcoming shows and hopefully a residency. If our proposals are successful it should be a really good start to the year, hopefully moving on to other exciting propositions at a later date.
My work for the Trust New Art has been photographed and sent and my next exploration is to attempt crystalising certain solutions to inform new working ideas. Lets hope it doesnt all evaporate into very little.

Sunday, 2 January 2011

I start the year of 2011 with the following in mind. Puce, flour, bigamous marriages and 'Young Hounds', a reference to some extremely handsome young architects that are close to hand.
These excerpts are included in my diaries and will probably feature heavily in this years work. As the pace gathers for what I can only see as an amazingly exciting year, I am starting this year of 2011 with working hours of around 16 - 18 hrs per day which is how I function best. Of course, after around 6 weeks of doing this, exhaustion catches up, but for now, I am high.
I am filling my sack up with more secretive issues which again is something I enjoy. Unlike a child and seemingly some adults, I am able to keep secrets well and quietly enjoy the frustration from others when I tell them I have them. So this will be integral to my practice, more so than before.

As well as making new work, I have been reading heavily for research purposes and my life has become much richer for it. The eccentricities of my research feeds my diaries, ideas and work and with the addition of overheard conversations and the found, it is my plan that 2011 will be the year of escapism.
With many plans afoot, my escapism should be held upright by a number of exciting residencies, stays away, collaborative and solo happenings. Undoubtedly, I am sure Freud would read me well, so for now, catch me if you can.

Trust NewArt

I have been working on some images for The National Trust, in particular for the Trust New Art initiative. I have been selected to
make work for a large run print run for a leaflet that will be travelling up and down the country to promote Trust New Art.
As well as this I am making new work for those couple of shows I have been talking about which will involve (hopefully) structures, drawing, sounds and the like before I embark on making work for the five stately and unusual properties across the UK later on this year. Head down and off we go.

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