Friday, 28 October 2011


I am working on a collaboration with a group of fellow artists and like minds. We are planning a travelling show of our work for next year. An exciting venture where four people who work using different media are coming together under a working exhibition title of 'Pilgrimage'. We have a couple of venues booked and await news on a couple of others watch this space!

‘A Pilgrimage is a journey of risk and renewal. For a journey without challenge has no meaning; one without purpose has no soul, by difinition it is life changing. A pilgrimage to lose yourself or to find yourself’ – Phil Coustineau

I want this show to be an opportunity to steer myself away from work I have been doing over the last couple of years...whether this actually happens, remains to be seen! I am hugely inspired by the work of land artists such as Richard Long, Hamish Fulton and Robert Smithson. Words and calligraphy have an important role in my work, not only for their meaning but also their pattern qualities and the shapes they make on the page. I love the idea of using words to map a walk and video footage to create an atmosphere....the sound of the walkers quick breath or the sound of footsteps. I love the impermanence of land art.

My pilgrimage is to the sea, it is both renewing and balancing. I am constantly drawn, into my car down the busy carriage way, until I reach my destination. The smell of the sea, the pungent smell of seaweed and mud, the scrunch of shells and pebbles beneath my feet, the clanking of halliards in the wind. I sit with a big rock I my hands, letting it find its own center. The balancing of a rock is like the balancing of my body in zazen, each vertebrae stacked one on top of the other, and when the balance s finally found, not a muscle is needed to hold me in place. I sway slightly in the light breeze. In the same way a stone rocks gently as gravity tries to pull it one way or the other. It takes concentration to feel your way, adjusting slightly as the weight shifts. When the rock eventually finds its centre it suddenly becomes weightless, I can feel it stand away from my finger tips, the whole universe is channelled through that balancing rock into the earth. The once incredibly heavy lump of a boulder can balance on the tiniest slither , its an extraordinary feeling. Sometimes they only last long enough for me to stand in awe and other times they balance seemingly precariously for hours until a vibration sends them crashing.

I also love to walk along the rope walk at Brightlingsea, or along the old railway track, so this may form part of my work.....There are Buddhist monks who live on Mount Hiei in Japan, who since the 9th C, have circumnavigated the mountain so many times, that after seven years they have walked the the equivalent of the circumference of the globe...WOW. Not sure yet how this will transpose onto a canvas....we'll see !.....exciting.

I think it was Hamish Fulton who said that 'Art is not about form, it's where that form takes you'
In other words, it's not the finished art work, but what it invokes in the viewer that is important.