NEW STUDIO Week Twelve
Coming to the end of three months in the shop, and looking like the end might be near – A contractor is looking around the property on Monday. It’s time to take stock of progress and in particular to examine where I am as an artist after retirement.
The shop looks like a gallery and I’ve had a few visitors, enough to mean I need to order some new cards, that have been very complementary. On the other hand I’m a six foot skinhead in overalls and steel toecaps so who wouldn’t be. Nothing is translating to sales but that’s never been the purpose, I don’t have a catalogue or pricelist (add to the to-do list) and the shop signage as yet is tiny. I’m in that mid grant application limbo where my intellectual energies are pointing me at things I can’t develop lest I start the thing I’ve applied for funding for and thus invalidate my application. It remains inordinately difficult to apply for funding as a practice led artist as you don’t know what you’re going to do until you do it. The ‘studio’ space of the shop looks like it’s working, plenty of space and I’m continually refining the way I use it.
As well as tidying up and maintaining equipment I started this week working on the computer – I’ll write a separate post to describe that work – and continued in the sketchbook on Wednesday.
I came up with a brief catalogue introduction for the Ptolemy’s Garden, work in progress exhibition.
Ptolemy’s Garden is a set of drawings and sculptures made from old flooring and drawings of gardens where I’ve buried cats over the last thirty years. Ptolemy walked down the garden one day as a kitten and stayed for a few years. He is buried here in these works as much he’s buried in Balby alongside Kelpie and Coco, or in Warmsworth next to Pliskie and Poppy, or in Sherburn in Elmet next to Polly.
I use the materials I find, ideally I like waste material that has had a previous life and breaks unpredictably. The material stops me from over directing the sculptures as the process grows towards resolution.
I collect the detritus of living, scraps randomly encountered, reflecting the memories I carry. I ascribe my deepest feelings to insignificant mementos and nostalgia orchestrates my future and my present.
Thursday I couldn’t face another day frustrated at the computer so I did some drawing, starting a set of collages from old sculpture sketches.
There are ten started, an individual one is below.
On Friday I continued drawing, in the sketchbook again, then on A1 sheets.
And finally did a small amount on the big garden drawing.