Stumbling across art in unexpected places delights me; sometimes it makes me smile, sometimes it makes me think, and it always makes me curious! Consequently, I take great pleasure in installing my work in unusual places. I love seeing how my soft sculptures can be site responsive and how they become something ‘other’ in a non-traditional setting. I really enjoy the challenge of finding surprising ways to hang my work. Working in listed buildings, for example, with the restrictions that they impose, has inspired me to show my work in some wonderfully quirky and creative ways.
My soft sculpture, Other 5,
installed at Privy at The Edwardian Cloakroom, June 2016,
in one of the Ladies' toilet cubicles!
(Please click on the image to read more)
I regard knitting as a physical drawing, the transformation of a linear material into a sculptural form, the ultimate balance between drawing and applied arts. Over the years I have developed extreme textured knitting techniques and used knitting as a sculptural medium to make large abstract forms. The hanging knitted form, suspended using tension and gravity, suggests a vulnerability which evokes a bodily resonance with notions of absence and the abject.
For me, the process of knitting is as important as the product. Knitting in private is what I call ‘stream of consciousness’ knitting – I have no pattern, just a few rules, which I sometimes allow myself to break! I make decisions as I knit and the form develops intuitively. I very quickly enter a state of meditative timelessness which induces a profound sense of wellbeing. The psychologist Csikszentmihalyi describes this as the state of flow; it is caused by deep concentration, where levels of skill match levels of challenge. It is often linked to creativity and, ultimately, to happiness.
Image: Heart of darkness, 2015 - present, hand knitted wool, knitting needles, yarn; installed at Synecdoche's Bodies residency, September 2016
(Please click on the image to read more.)
I'm very excited to be part of another month-long residency with Synecdoche Art Community, this time at The Vestibules, Bristol this September. It starts on September 4th so come and see what happens.....More details to follow....
(And the poster is an image of part of the work I did at the Bodies residency last September, Don't wash your dirty laundry in public, 2016)
Synecdoche presents [dis]place at The Vestibules, City Hall, Bristol
dis: prefix - changing a term to the negative
place: noun - a particular position, point, or area in space; a location
verb - to put something somewhere
displace: verb - to move or put out of the usual or proper place
A group of artists from Synecdoche, a Bristol-based art community, will explore the ideas that these definitions evoke during their month-long residency at The Vestibules in September 2017. Displaced from their normal routines to make art in a public space, they are aiming to work differently, reacting to this new environment, bringing a range of practices and ideas that will hopefully change and evolve over time. The visitors may influence what happens, through interaction, conversation or by their very presence. There will always be something to see, to inspire and engage. Come with an open mind; every day will be different.
Can the experience of being displaced offer a fresh perspective, unexpected connections and a new understanding?
Click on the image for more information