Unearthing the Work
11th October 2021
My long-term project – to produce a body of work on the theme of the earth – has been on hold since the spring, because the last few months have been all about teaching and re-connecting with friends and former students. Meeting up with my family was also put on hold but, now that I am no longer tied to the studio, I can get down south and visit them too.
Meanwhile, I am pulling out of storage all the part-developed cloth that I have been amassing and looking for a direction for each piece. My last teaching group was small, so I have already made a wee bit of a start by stitching alongside them and last week I actually completed my first piece for exhibition. This image is a detail from “The Midas Sun”.
And so “Earthworks” is now top of my creative agenda once again. I look forward, as autumn takes hold, of finding a way to realise my yearning to make this work. I have less than a year in which to do it. I know that sounds a lot, but life does get in the way and I think I will be very pleased if I can make this deadline. Here we go …
7th April 2021
It has been a long seven months since I last made a post to this web page. Like most folk, I have had to mine the depths of my self-resiliance just to get through the twin challenges of the pandemic and a really tough Highland winter. This has meant that I have not been able to focus on the theme of Earthworks. Instead, I have been making small works for selling online, in order to make a living. These have, I hope, answered both my need and my customers' need, to enjoy whatever light we have been able to find. Mostly, I've been making colourful and positive images of my life here and this has given purpose to each day.
But now, buoyed up by the twin joys of spring and the vaccine programme, I feel ready to go back to the big ideas of the Earthworks project. So, keep an eye on this page if you want to see some of the developing work!
21st August 2020
In the course of this year's lockdown, there have been many opportunities for little moments of observation of the landscape and the flora and fauna to be found within and outwith my garden. Indeed, the quiet roads and the slow rhythm to each day allowed me to go deeper into my connection with the natural world. And as the weeks turned into months, a slow-simmering plan for a new body of work emerged. Everything comes from the earth and returns to the earth. It is the larder that provides for all living beings. And, in one form or another, eventually holds all our secrets and memories.
This is a theme that I have touched upon many a time, but now that I have spent several years developing the use of plants, minerals and found materials to make marks on cloth, I feel that I have the tools, the medium and the imagery to create some work worthy of this theme. But it will be a slow process, in thought and deed. I imagine that I might have a collection of work - visual and written - in around two years' time, just around my sixtieth birthday. I plan to call this collection, and the accompanying book, Earthworks.
My use of new media is limited to Instagram and the updating of this website. So, I have created a website page for this new project and will occasionally post an image or piece of writing, should you be interested to look. But most of the work will be under wraps until I feel that it is ready to share with an audience.
I am very excited to be taking on such a big theme over such a long period of time and hope that I can do the theme justice. But, there is only one way to find out!
Please click to enlarge image