Saturday, 31 August 2013

Ize on da move

Well, two months to go before I become a nomad again. All belongings will be sifted through, discarding the useless and not very beautiful. In the words of William Morris 'Have nothing in your houses that you do not know to be useful, or believe to be beautiful'
So clear out I must. A fair amount of artworks, books and general art materials will be going down to Waterside Gallery, Brightlingsea on 14th/15th Sept. for a 'Studio Sale'  along with a couple of other artist's work. This will coincide with the Colchester & Tendring Open Studios weekend in Wivenhoe and Brightlingsea. So if you are making a trip out to Wivenhoe or Brightlingsea that weekend, call in at the gallery, down by the harbour, you never know what gem you may find.
Email me, or send a msg via facebook, if you would like more info. We do have room for a couple more artist sellers if anyone is interested ...??

The packing up of the studio has started and the more room I make, the more room is taken up with other things that need a home !

I have much to do in preparation for the move, not least, working out how to get my belongings all the way to Gozo without breaking the bank. I'm hugely excited and nervous all at the same time. The prospect of starting from scratch promoting my artwork is a worry. But I have lots of ideas up my sleeve and along with painting in my usual style (hoping there will be a supply of driftwood I can call on) I will be also be venturing into new areas, so lots to look forward to.
In the mean time I will be learning how to paint/distress furniture in the Annie Sloane style...well my style, her paint ! with a view to running this along side my artwork. 
A new blog has emerged which I will be posting notes on the move, so check it out if you want a little of the Mediterranean sneaking into your home. Love Gozo.
The blog is still in in it's infancy and needs much tweeking...but it's a start ! see you there.

Friday, 16 August 2013

Counting 'waiting'

I was waiting up the other night to witness the meteor shower that was due. The sky was clear and I stood by the open window at 1am, waiting. I waited, nothing happened. Then out of the corner of my eye I caught a flash across the sky. Damn, missed it. I’ll wait for another. I wanted to see a spectacular event. Fifteen minutes passed before another glimpse.  Always looking in the wrong direction. Hmmm. Waited. Then a meteor shot right in front of me, in a beautiful arc across the sky. That’s better, wow, amazing. Right where’s the next ? This went on for two hrs though the time sped by. I was so caught up in the concentration of watching, so as not to miss a single one I didn’t notice time. Sometimes they came in groups and some times I just caught their tail, but all the time I thought it would get better, more spectacular, so I waited.
It seemed to me I have been waiting all my life for something spectacular to happen.

I have read and re read John Tarrant’s book ‘Bring me the rhinoceros.’ And in there he talks about a Zen koan called ‘Count the stars in the sky’. He calls it a boring koan because you just count.
Watching the stars the other night reminded me of this koan. I wasn’t counting stars, but I was counting waiting. The Tibetans have a word for being between things ‘Bardo’. Between life and death, between death and life. I seemed to be always in bardo, waiting for something, between things happening. So I started counting my waiting.

Waiting for the sun to come out. Waiting for a friend to come for a drink. Waiting for paint to dry. Waiting for someone to come home. Waiting for legal matters to be tied up. Waiting for my tea to be cool enough to drink. Waiting for my stomach to stop churning. Waiting for someone to answer an email. Waiting for the very slow girl at the check out. Waiting a very long time for some one to tell me they loved me, in the end someone else did.  Waiting to move house. Waiting to move country. Waiting for the man to come to read the meter. Waiting for the wind to die down. Waiting for my life to get back on track. Waiting for my mind to settle so I can meditate properly !

All those times I am waiting for something to happen, or not to happen, I am in bardo, between moments.
What if, in all those between times I came back to my breath ? What if I used those bardo moments to come back to the still place and be quiet and aware ? What if those waiting moments weren’t wasted at all but the most precious of gaps? What if those precious gaps were in fact the ‘spectacular’ ?

Monday, 12 August 2013

That's Summer done then !

The Summer exhibitions that I am involved in , have now come to an end and I feel at a loose end. I am hugely grateful to all those people who bought my artworks, I am hardly left with anything at all. Which is not only good news financially but also I need to have a massive clear out of my studio, in preparation for the move. Over the last couple of weeks I have been sorting out the odds and ends left from previous exhibitions (to put in a sale in Sept). I came across some unused planks of wood amongst the canvases. Hmmm. Waste not, want not, or something. I had also been hanging onto a couple of paintings of doorways that I particularly like. One of a Libyan door and one Maltese. I shall take these with me, but it got me thinking about what I shall be painting next.

 The Mediterranean colours are so different and I will have to get used to using a completely different palette. I wonder if I will miss the soft light of this East coast, the ever changing skies and muted grey and khaki of the water. The Mediterranean doors and architecture will be very inspiring, the shabby chic of the peeling paint is so beautiful. I have lots to look forward to.

Sooo, I thought I would have a little experiment with colours on these spare boards and see what happens ! I'll keep you posted. Can't help myself. Even when I don't have an exhibition to work towards, I just have to keep a painting !

 A box of driftwood I no longer need will be donated to my friend Susie for her to use in conjunction with her beautiful ceramics. See her website here.

Keep an eye out for news about the studio sale, lots on offer, including original art works, books, materials and lots more.