Confering

Last week I installed Walkers: I, you,we& they and Someone loved effectively as one piece of work.

The individuals, Nin, John,Margaret, Cheryl and Olwen took their places amongst the slightly more anonymous figures of the Walkers to create a community. Set alongside trade stands promoting organisations who support social care it presented both an interesting juxtaposition and experience for me and those who joined me in the ‘community ‘ of my artwork.

It seems that this work provides a living legacy of lives either hidden or no longer physically alive as more than one visitor remarked on the calm afforded by the presence of the artwork installation. A chance perhaps to reflect on creative contributions made by residents to the hurly burly world in which we generally move.

Something to be thankful for

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Conversing

Quoting Wikipedia   

Conversation is interactive communication between two or more people.

The development of conversational skills and etiquette is an important part of socialization.

 

Today I visited a friend with advanced Alzeimhers’ disease and told him about a meeting I had on Monday with an academic consultant whom I felt I had inadvertently intimidated. My friend used to run international training groups and had clearly been very highly thought of.

I cannot recall words spoken, except the ‘bobbly bits’, ‘plates’, ‘two and sixpences’ and Humpty Dumpty. However I came away inspired and informed.

If we examine the meaning of conversation  and pay attention to the definition given above perhaps more conversations with those with differing dementias can help develop our socialisation.

Just a thought

 

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Doorways

Today I am hiring a van to take a piece of work to Bath for the FaB Festival. https://www.fringeartsbath.co.uk/doorways

Someone loved, John

Writing for the Larks and Ravens this morning made me pause to consider the words that we use and even in choosing this title for the piece.  The word someone can be so throw away but looking at it written here it is also a statement about each life.

 

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Reflecting identity

This gallery contains 3 photos.

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Working over time

So I am continuing the piece entitled Days of my life and have now done 46 years of cutting, painting , cutting and stitching!

It is interesting that as I continue I am learning more and more about the paint and paper and the metaphor seems to deepen. Each page/ day is different but informed by what has gone before. The evidence is in the marks but each page hides those beneath it. It is the whole piece that offers an outward manifestation or some insight of the experience.

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Processing my process

The scale of Woollenline, a huge landscape drawing, its domestic, social, political and economic arrangements forced a new way of working that now impacts on my current work, exploring identity.
Slowly drawing alongside people both caring for and living with dementia inspires a subconscious shift of both pace and scale.
I remain preoccupied by the  materials of life. The fleshy substance of it: literally when encountering an organ ( brains) pickled in formaldehyde and then again when travelling with the conversations afforded by mid stage Alzeimher’s.
And not only those affected with an enhanced alteration of their brain, every one of us sees and experiences the world differently forcing my interrogation of the use of pronouns : who is the ‘they’, ‘you’ and ‘we’?
The scale of Walkers: I, you, we & they could have been infinite but is determined by the relationship of the piece to the initial prints, hand-held clay tablets carrying images of Sumerian glyphs, the pronouns.
Each step of exploration brings new insights: Someone loved  a series of portraits inspired by residents of a care home are made of hundreds, if not thousands of individual pieces, paper, beads, rags, glass. Each different personality requiring its own materials.
The work echoes an enquiry into my own life, a piece made from over 23,000 pieces of painted paper, Day’s of my life. 
Then there is my brain.
Over 400 images from the MRI scan I volunteered for at University College London.
New work.
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Nin

 

My drawing of Nin is made from beautiful rich red wool fabric cut from a military jacket.

Nin was once in the Queen’s guard. he was 73 when he died recently.

The background is made from studio rags

It is bizarre how when, cut into small pieces and knotted they start to take on the colours of bruises.

When complete the piece will have used between 27,000 and 30,000 bits of rag more than the days that made up Nin’s life

Like Days of my life, each element whether paper or cloth, unique in itself , yet seen from a glance they merge to tones and patterns of their own making.

 

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