Puppets, Power and the Patriarchy

Not Punch and Judy: The Chronicle and Story of an Experiment in Emergent Practice, 2014, 9m 6s

I revisited this film last week, whilst deciding whether to include it in an art award application. It was fascinating to watch the process of the puppets being made, including the undoing of bits that didn’t work. I thought I’d cringe at my reflective narration but actually it feels even more relevant six years on.

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Emotional Flashbacks Don’t Have to be Destabilising

Mauve Daisies 2020, photograph

I had an emotional flashback on Monday. I had a deadline for an expression of interest for an art project yesterday. I feel wiped out today. An emotional flashback results in my body going into shock. There are no visual memories, which is why I sometimes find it confusing to understand – seeing is believing, right? It is purely a bodily reaction to a past trauma. My extremities go very pale and I shiver. It’s when I start shivering that I think, ‘wait, what’s going on?’ 

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Connection versus Despair and the Winner is… Connection

Drawing despair – work in progress – pigment pen on paper

The Pain of Remembrance

The day before yesterday I was ready to throw in the towel and go back to Brighton; back to my cosy flat where I don’t have to plan where I’m going to sleep, or shower, or get water from (I’m living in my van for a couple of weeks whilst visiting university in person). It got too hard, especially when Boris Johnson announced new Covid-related restrictions. As I sat in the university library trying to work out how the new restrictions would affect me, I felt horribly alone.

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Lonely Teenage Part Discovered Whilst Painting Dots

I tapped into a teenage part of me whilst painting dots. I was feeling lonely. One of the things I love about painting is the meditative aspect. I can sit and be aware of thoughts, feelings and sensations without the need to act on them because I’ve dedicated myself to the task of painting dots. I first became aware of this choice in relation to thoughts when I painted Constellation in 2009. It was a revelation! I don’t have to act out every thought and impulse!

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Square Dots #1

Square Dots #1 (2020)
Acrylic on canvas
12 x 12 in
POA

If you would like to know the price of Square Dots #1, contact me. If that statement makes you nervous, there’s no pressure to buy. Do feel free to ask me questions about my work.

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Spring Wonderland (2020)

Spring Wonderland (2020)
Acrylic on canvas
12 x 12 in
POA

If you would like to know the price of Spring Wonderland contact me. If that statement makes you nervous, there’s no pressure to buy. Do feel free to ask me questions about my work.

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Cruel Britannia

Cruel Britannia (2020)
Found object, string, and acrylic on canvas
39 x 39 x 4 cm

I was thinking about the transportation of slaves from British colonies to Britain whilst making this painting. The painting consists of a found object – a broken pole – attached to the canvas with string and everything painted white. The string and pole form a shape similar to the British flag and are reflections of shipping, oppression and bondage.

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Hopes and Dreams

In this time of collective trauma, it can be hard to manage stress. One way of coping is to think about hopes and dreams. I’ve created a spreadsheet to capture our hopes and dreams. Perhaps you’d like to add yours to it? Here’s a link.

I don’t know what I’ll do with the spreadsheet yet. Maybe nothing. As an artist, I might be inspired by it to make something. I work in a way that allows for things to emerge rather than plan the outcome in detail. You can check out my work here.

I once held a couple of events for adults to play in a children’s indoor adventure playground. We did an activity on hopes and dreams there. Here’s a link to that.