The touring exhibition for Containing Time will soon start at National Centre for Craft and Design Lincoln from 8 July – 3 September followed by Ruthin Gallery Wales 30 September – 19 November and then Gracefield Art Centre Scotland 26 November – 7 January. Here is an example of a text, poem, photograph and ceramic bowl which are all an expression of finding stunted catkins on a felled tree in January. It is the 11th bowl of 52.
11 Stunted Catkin Heads Suffolk Bridleway
I am dog walking along a field ditch edged with hedgerows and trees. The sky is cloudy grey, the path muddy soft from heavy rain. The prints of horses, deer and muntjak are etched into the ground. For a hundred meters ahead the line of hedging has been cut by the farmer, sliced by a chainsaw to reveal smooth yellow wood made indecent by sudden amputation. A hazel tree lies across the path; stunted catkins hang from the branches, their future pollination a thwarted dream.
A hazel tree felled across the path
Smooth yellow wood
Sliced by a chainsaw
Stunted catkins hanging limply
Containing Time shown at Korsbarsgarden Gotland Sweden this summer June / July.
My work has evolved recently to connect up the different strands of my professional practise as a ceramic artist, photographer, writer and film maker in a new interactive way. It arose from feeling creatively blocked and needing a new challenge.
Spanning a year in the form of a weekly diary, the idea examines interlocking themes of materials, environment, time and journeys through an exploration of a spontaneously and randomly found material. The material could be organic or man made and presents itself to me as life unfolds. It could be in my home and garden environment, during a walk, or while travelling for work or pleasure. Many, but not all of the materials have been collected from my locale in rural Suffolk. For example rose hips were found during a walk, olive stones were saved from the kitchen, limestone shingle was collected from a beach in Sweden whilst on holiday.
I use the senses of sight, hearing, taste, smell and touch to describe with text and poetry the moment and experience of finding. The simple act of stopping, engaging the senses and selecting an often overlooked everyday object gives it fresh significance and allows me to discover unexpected places. Initial engagement with the material develops further as I separate it from its context and use it as a vehicle for creative expression.
I will be posting regularly about this project.