Fine Art Year Three Interim Show

Here is a snapshot of some of the work to emerge from two terms of individual research and development. The process of putting together this ‘grab’ of the group’s output began with a rewrite of personal statements to reflect more precisely current methods and intentions. These texts were presented at a series of seminars where images were selected collectively to best document each artistic project.

Britta

I am curious about people, their mundane activities and interactions. It is the little, sometimes quiet emotions that fascinate me: the essence of what it is to be human. Paying attention to the significance of small details and gestures is how I try to capture the mood of my observations and experiences. Noticing these things without judging them – allowing them just to ‘be’.

My work also relates to the aura of places. Frequently I am struck by the way that low-key, often repetitive tasks seem to have the power to colour our surroundings, and leave an echo, even when we are no longer present. Attending to these subtle cues, trying to capture something of the atmosphere of a scene, I’d like my work to sensitise and draw attention to what normally  goes unnoticed.

I take site photos and start with quick sketches, working them up into drawings and paintings which become increasingly elaborate as I respond to the memories triggered. This might lead me to change the composition, the light or colour value to give space to these

significant details. I am drawn to opposites, old next to new, still against moving, past colouring present or quiet as opposed to busy. I might draw and paint such scenes many times over, trying to both determine and capture the particular emotions evoked.

Claire

In many respects my work relates to the disconnect between natural cycles and the organisation of contemporary society. I take fairytales to be a bridge to a more ecologically balanced past. Throughout history near identical myths have been present in every society around the globe and I’m intrigued by

history near identical myths have been present in every society around the globe and I’m intrigued by the extent to which most relate to the beginning of female fertility, the sheer quantity of blood-red symbolism: Red Riding Hood, Cinderella, Sleeping Beauty etc. The strong cyclical element in these narratives (life/death, sun/moon) is also striking.

Initially I revisited the Ladybird books of my childhood. I also thought about the ‘Disneyfication’ of these narratives and tried creating a ‘negative’ palette working

with complementary opposites to disrupt the saccharin sweet overtones of these cartoons. When I began making paintings I wanted no visible brush-marks. To achieve this I added PVA which caused my paint to look quite edible. I enjoy this ‘eat me’ quality (perhaps like the cannibalistic witch’s gingerbread house in Hansel and Gretel) and its nod to instinctive desire.

More recently I have started to put together a collection of costumes to reenact my own interpretations of these myths.

I’m interested in the extent to which the imagery can be pulled out of shape and yet still be recognisable. I re-stage these archetypal stories using drawing, my photographs and collage, before taking them into paint. My aim is to create a critical mass of these retellings, one which will ultimately allude to the primacy of the lunar cycle.

Claudia

My work is autobiographical and explores the relationship between appearances and the psychological undertow often lurking beneath images. Specifically I am interested in transgenerational trauma and female identity in the context of growing up in West Germany in the 1960/70s, being brought up by parents who had to experience the horrors of the second world war as children and living in London since the 1990s. Photography is a vital component in my work. My source images are selected from family albums, some actually taken by me as a child. I’m very conscious of them as physical artefacts (light reflected into the camera’s lens and captured in photographic emulsion)

and I see an equivalence here in the way I translate these images into the physicality of paint on a surface.

In the first instance, mirroring the camera’s neutral eye, I use tracing as a means of unfixing my sense of a photograph’s content and meaning, destabilising it to discover its latent truth for me now. My painting process is like watching a picture gradually emerge from the developer tray, always prone to unexpected

change. And thinking about the mechanics of photography has caused me to consider working with over and underexposure of light in the same painting, radical re-cropping of images and the elimination of detail. It’s also caused me to think about the psychological aspect of exposing and being exposed, covering and uncovering, and increasingly I reflect on issues around ownership, consent, privacy and appropriation as I make these edits to a shared familial history.

Emma

I have an affinity with trees that reaches back to my childhood.  The forest seemed enchanted in the 1970’s.  Walking in the woods today, I’m reminded that we have consequential presence.  The constant tread of sanctioned hours of exercise along the newly widened paths in Epping Forest has left an unmistakable footprint. 

I leave the main path to seek sanctuary …

I avoid other people but find myself on the lookout for evidence of human presence.  The wigwams, lean-to’s and stick houses that have mushroomed here during lockdown draw me in.  

What started as an exercise in structural analysis as autumn leaves fell has become a study of the slow dereliction of man-made structures set against the longevity of trees. Come winter I experiment with taking frottage prints, make a lino cut series of local stick houses and then thread them onto a selected stick for the purpose of display.  Outdoors, I prop the threaded stick against a derelict stick house.  I arrange a temporary display of autumnal tree portraits against slender birch trunks using sticks from the fallen heap.

My interest in collectable sticks ranging in size from small-enough-to-stow-in-a-pocket up to big-enough-to-use-for-walking dates back to when I first broke out of the print room & started making monoprints at home.  During lockdown, experiments with serendipitous sculptural assemblages –  inspired by Derek Jarman’s Modern Nature (1991) – have taken on a their own life in full view of another viral landscape.

My intention is to tread lightly, not to radically alter or disrupt the landscape with grand gestures.   I found a beautiful tree ornament hanging from a sapling recently.  As I reached up to claim my prize, I notice it’s home to many tiny insects, so I

place it carefully at the foot of the tree and I take a moment to regard it as dwelling place.  I leave it resting there for another week, before taking it home with me.

Iona

My current research is focused on process, repetition and muscle memory. I’m interested in how the body’s movement becomes increasingly unconscious when asked to perform even unfamiliar tasks repeatedly. I’ve worked extensively with ‘blind’ drawing (observing my source image but never the paper I’m working on) which seems to hasten this this tendency.

During lockdown I struggled to find a way of working. Initially I tried to recreate my large-scale gestural works on a smaller scale. I found this difficult because I was unable to convey the same energy and expressiveness at this scale. I decided to shift the materials and space in which I was working to create tiny cubes or 3-dimensional drawings. These crafted objects have become a bit of an obsession and mimic the process of drawing I am used to.

I move between two and three-dimensional work. The activities involved in each are quite distinct which changes the influence exerted by muscle memory on the emerging work.

It gives me endless surprises and opportunities as observed data is fed into these different processes of making.

My work hints at an observed drawing or diagram without obviously depicting an image. I enjoy the intrigue this ambiguity creates but also how this allows the physical act of the drawing or making to come across. I see all aspects of my work as interconnected presentations of the same essential method and I am currently considering ways of grouping my objects and how my drawing, painting and 3-D output is presented together to accent this fact.

Jen

I am interested in developing a visual language through the repetition and evolution of mark-making, to act as a personal calligraphy without words. Experiences of being and sketching in woodland feeds the mark-making process, which continues to develop back in the studio and evolves into something more reflective, through physical distance from the origin and the perspective of memory.

A question that frequently recurs in my work is the role of subjectivity in our experience of the world and which aspects, if any, of our visual experiences are universally shared. Spending time quietly sketching in the woods makes me feel far more connected to, and moved by, my

environment, and I want to try to identify and express some of the less tangible experiences this has enabled through my visual language.

Last autumn I began to isolate and enlarge specific marks, taking them out of the format of a developed composition and elevating each individual mark to subject matter. In January I lost access to usable indoor space to make artwork and began to focus more on exploring and drawing outside in local woodland. This has resulted in a sketchbook journal

of experiences of escaping lockdown, claustrophobia and over-thinking to roam through beautiful, unpopulated, natural spaces. I plan to begin to develop these experiences within a studio setting again soon, continuing the exploration of mark-making and visual language.

Kathy

Edges, borders and liminal areas are the focus of my painting practice.

Initially my work responded to external visual stimuli, like fleeting images glimpsed from planes, those enjoyed on a walk along the seashore or examined in a rock or crystal. More recently, by experimenting with collages made of post-it notes as an impetus for painting, I realised that the point of departure itself is of little consequence. 

Central to my practice is how painting functions as a process. Layer after layer of acrylic, often in neon-bright colours, interact with the later applications of thin oil glaze, predominantly in darker tones. Each is rubbed back vigorously, but still leaves its impression across the textured surface. A push / pull between the elements of the surface evolves. Rather than conveying a particular narrative or meaning, I’m driven by the focus on these formal aspects. Paper, mainly unprimed, remains my

preferred support because its ungiving surface can itself become an actor in the creation of the image as parts are scuffed or rubbed away and then react differently to the paint.

What’s happening at the margins is critical, where the painting reveals the story of its making. These framing passages of white at the limit of each work create a silence magnifying the intensity of the paint applications. I enjoy the resulting ‘off-centred’ quality, the way it pushes the viewer’s eye from the edges towards the centre and back again.

Katrin

Drawing is the mainstay of my art practice. I use it to diary my experience, to capture the intensity and urgency of my inner world. I’ve been working mainly with charcoal and pastel to relate, in a quite unmediated way, memories, reflections and associations as they surface in a kind of stream of consciousness image-making.

It’s been a very difficult year, made much worst by the pandemic and a constant sense of being disconnected, and some imagery is disconcerting. My thoughts often loop, which leads to a repetitions of mark-making within a single drawing. This has emphasised gesture and surface quality, to an extent veiling the original narrative and imagery. It’s a bit like saying the same word over and over again, the way its meaning becomes lost in the pure, abstract sound uttered.

When thoughts don’t lend themselves immediately to image-making, I write them into my drawings. But I have no

desire for my work to be confessional and I mostly obscure or eliminate the words by scribbling over or smudging them. Sometimes they appear backwards and sometimes as fragments. Becoming increasingly illegible there is a sense that the specifics I’m responding to are being made to ‘unhappen’ leaving only the brut energy released.

To a degree these drawings are about transitioning from one state of being to another. The past cannot be changed or eliminated (its blunted imprint remains held within each image) but the marks being made on top bring new life and possibility.

Lorena

This body of work, created at home during the successive lockdowns, represents a journey of exploration into processes and materials mainly focused on domestic settings. Making in situ, I notice small differences between what I think I know about my surroundings and what emerges after a period of contemplation.

In this series I work predominantly with printing and casting, often taken directly from the objects around me. I’m excited by the once-removed quality this creates, the way that very familiar things are made unfamiliar. Working with these prints and fragments, I try to assemble them in abstract compositions in ways that make sense in relation to their visual logic.

Over the last months I have sought out ‘home friendly’ methods and materials which has opened up new paths in my practice, moving me into a more three-dimensional space. Going forwards I’d like to continue the exploration of my surroundings, gathering traces of the objects in that space, studying the intimate relationship between the place and its occupants. I’d like my work to inspire a reappraisal of everyday experience, to show that how you look at something is as important as what you are looking at.

Munisha

My paintings grow from personal experience and making them allows me to test and determine more fully my relationship with everyday life. I’m interested in the way that personal and domestic spaces can be overlaid with shadows and ambiguities, the way painting has the potential to take my familiar and make it feel almost uncanny.

During this year of lockdowns I’ve been working increasingly from memory. I continue to use the immersive act of painting to ‘feel’ my way towards something, but rather than responding to a stable image I allow the vagaries of recollection free reign to distort the structure of each painting. To what

extent my recent work remains representational is an open question. I allow personal imagery to gather on the surface of each painting, stacked almost, which moves it to the edge of figuration. Increasingly I can feel my paintings are becoming almost confessional.

Neale

“The birds sing sweetly”
Nightingale song, Thrush song, Google Street View (XXGF+G4 Boston), Marigold (210367), EU referendum data, bespoke algorithm
Single-channel video with sound, 1 minute 

June has arrived,
With bloom and birdsong;
We sit outside ‘The Traveller’s Rest’,
As the little brown nightingale sings his best, 
While the thrush and birds of the bush,
Sing louder around.

I heard a dispute between two views,
One positive, one negative,
Between a couple of birds;
One praised them for their courtesy,
The other tried to bring them down by force;
You can hear that argument.”

The results are in,
And I count the numbers that make them sing.
One is the nightingale,
Who wanted to protect them from shame;
Two is the thrush who constantly attacked them;
He said they are all demons.

I swing the camera round, 
Travel down the lanes I cannot name, 
And gaze upon this blessed plot;
A sense of majesty and beauty and repose,
Blended holiness of earth and sky,
While the birds sing sweetly.

“It happened in the summery heart, Of a secret vale’s most hidden part”
Nightingale song, Thrush song, Google Street View (XXGF+G4 Boston), Pink and Rose (1890), EU referendum data, bespoke algorithm
Single-channel video with sound, 1 minute
“Singest of summer in full-throated ease”
Nightingale song, Thrush song, Google Street View (XXGF+G4 Boston), Chrysanthemum (1877), EU referendum data, bespoke algorithm
Single-channel video with sound, 1 minute

Pip

My work evolved from a lesson in weaving. We used recycled materials and French-knitted on large hoops around each other. The textures and colours, the physical act of making, combined with the repetitive rhythmical method, gave me a feeling of calm and unity. I began to see all things as a potential loom, from high rise buildings to fences and nets. 

Like weaving, the process of making paintings and prints is very important to me. The discipline of setting out materials and working though tasks methodically is like a meditative practice. This creates a sense of order in a disordered environment.

The grids I create in my work are like the warps and weft of the loom. There is a rhythm to grids which is stable and unchanging. This provides structure and support to my pictures, in the same way grids seem to underpin the blueprint of in everything, from maps and building plans to dressmaking patterns

I feel we are mutually dependent on one another as we weave together our human connections in life. Working with masks and stencils relates to woven surfaces but also shows more of what lies beneath, alluding perhaps to these relationships and how we do or don’t reveal ourselves.

Tony

There is an inherent beauty and efficiency in the design of the body. This I find mirrored in the efficient construction and design of industrial objects and architecture. I’m interested in the depth given to these constructions by the collective human activity that informs their scale, making and use.

I am influenced by my upbringing in the working port of Derry and my work (as a

lawyer) on industrial projects in India (the construction of power plants, dams, the Delhi underground, factories for steel, telecommunications and the like). I also think my experience in sport has shaped my thinking, with its emphasis on efficiency, technique and teamwork.

My project involves drawing, photography and clay in response to the human form and industrial vernacular architecture. The common

thread relates to structure and purpose, the aesthetic beauty that arises from functionality. My work to date has been like a fact-finding mission where I have tested visually what I’m instinctively drawn to. I am starting to consider ways to consolidate and focus this research. One aspect I’m interested in is what abandoned working buildings tell us about community and culture.

Vivienne

My work relates to memory and space, the way in which we psychologically inhabit places, whether real, imagined or remembered. I begin by making roughly hewn cardboard models without particular

intent, adding to them as I go along. They grow both physically and in my mind: an extra room, markings on walls, structural changes to let light in. As I video, sketch and paint them, a series of believable places

seem to emerge. This raises questions for me about materiality and fiction: these models are obviously real, but rather than the rough-cut pieces of cardboard they so clearly are I respond to them as life-sized spaces.

Working in this way initiates echoes of recognition. I realise that the resonance of previously experienced places shapes how my work is seen, the way the artifice of my models (both constructed and painted) has

the potential to reawaken embedded memories. I’m interested in how these are projected onto my work.

Recently I’ve been taking more Covid-safe night walks. On one such walk I found myself captivated and confused by my response to the shop window and its multiple reflections. In its ambiguity I recognised much of the theatrical quality as my studio constructions. It seemed both real and unreal. This apparent contradiction, where the ‘real’ world functions like a stage set, has become my current focus.

Wendy

I am exploring what it means to be mixed-race through my eyes, my experience, my history. Over one million people living in the UK are mixed race, by investigating my personal experience I also hope to uncover some universal truths.

At a time when it is dawning on our nation, slowly, in indigestible nuggets, that oppression and human rights

Milk Skin 19.06.2020 25x21cm, newsprint and milk

violations can be found very readily by those prepared to peer under the Axminsters of just one or two centuries of recent British History, what am I to make of the ‘half–cast’ me? Half oppressor, half oppressed? Post, post–colonial?

Milk Skin 06.03.2021 25x21cm, newsprint and milk

Brown at first sight, my reality is that of the ‘other’, the outsider. However, there are other worlds where crossbreeding does not have the negative connotations that miscegenation has. One of these is the World Of Roses. In this parallel universe breeding exotic hybrids is a highly valued skill.

The best known of these breeders, David Austin, named his first hybrid English Rose


after Constance Spry. She had arranged the flowers for the coronation in Westminster Abbey, and also created that curry flavoured dish, Coronation Chicken. David Austin’s English Roses have all been created in my lifetime.



I’m not at all sure where my exploration of English Roses will take me. Desdemona, Sceptre’d Isle, Lark Ascending, John Betjeman and William & Catherine are in my crosshairs. Fragrances, lusciousness, rosebuds and possibly hubris beckon. I’m looking forward to some fun and who knows, a possible epiphany to share with mixers and shakers along the way.

Fine Art Year Two Interim Show

This is a snapshot of some of the work beginning to emerge after a term and a half of individual research. Thiscourse sketchbookis the result of a series of seminars where the group as a whole reflected on the progress of each person’s output and the responses it provoked. The text reflects this assessment. Images were then selected, again collectively, to best document each research process.

Alchemy probably best describes Adenike’s practice. Her fascination with the properties colour has led her to make inks using plants foraged in the main from her local environment. The performance of these inks changes quite radically depending on the paper stock to which each is applied and the alkaline or acidic liquids she adds.

Working with the chemical qualities of her medium has required a rigorous methodology and careful cataloguing of her results. In many respects she allows the process to stand centre stage. Rather than imposing a motif, she

works with pouring, manipulating the direction of each run to allow the natural properties of the medium to works with pouring, manipulating the direction of each run to allow the natural properties of the medium

to create each work. The often net-like structures that emerge look almost like they have grown themselves, so, rather than each image seeking to be a representation, nature appears to be embodied in the process itself.

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Aurelia’s work is influenced by mythology and history, particularly in relation to musical and dramatic performance. Initially large scale drawings attempted to map something of the experience getting into character, the ‘pushing through’ to occupy a different space. Creating them, their vast scale placed her in the image and made her to an extent part of the depiction. This became the catalyst for her deciding to use her own body to perform this experience.

Locked down and with limited materials she thought about ways to physically portray this feeling, ultimately deciding to work with clingfilm. Wrapping herself in it and then trying to break free or creating barriers in doorways through which to push, she has carefully catalogued these events as moving images. Reflecting on these documents she is beginning to decide how

next to proceed. One big surprise was the incredible volume of the sounds her body made against the clingfilm and she has begun work on a sound piece which may potentially stand alone.

A claustrophobic first lockdown was the impetus for Claire’s often highly charged drawings of her surroundings, in particular her bathroom. The sink, taps and furniture took on an increasingly anthropomorphic quality and it’s difficult not to respond to these works as reflected self-portraits. These arguably express more feeling and emotion than more straightforward depictions of herself might have, posing intriguing questions about the circumstances of the backstory projected onto these ‘characters’.

Out of these drawings grew a fascination with individual objects, toothbrushes in particular, which she imagined invested with life in the manner of a ventriloquist’s dummy. This led her to make a number of rough and ready animations. In one, toothbrushes interact, sometimes amorously, in ways that are both touching and witty. These moving image pieces

create the sense of imaginative escape from confinement and their deliberately low production values invite the viewer to collude in this imagining.

Delia’s work advances from the fundamental truth that we are all migrants or else descendants of migrants. She senses a strong connection between this abstract concept and the land over which these migrations occurred: the trace of life lines across time and topography.

Her knowledge of printmaking has been key to her work’s development. Taking the notion of repeated waves of migration she has overlaid loosely formed figural motifs onto carefully chosen, light-weight papers. This paper stock and the incredibly desaturated colour with which she works has given these pieces an almost ethereal quality, perhaps hinting at the

ghosts of migration stretching back millennia. And the translucency of much of her work has led her to experiment with the possibilities of backlighting. This has allowed her to change the relationship between the (printed) figure and ground creating a kind of just-visible, archetypal

human presence. To allow these experiments with lighting, these delicate, often large-scale works are made to hang freely, responsive to the slightest breeze. The sound this creates has opened up another line of enquiry as her recordings add an aural texture to the visual trace of human presence in motion articulated by her work.

Claire uses fabric to make sculptures; sometimes dressed over armatures and at other times engineered to stand unaided. Her method has involved much research into region-specific techniques (sewing and embroidery) reflecting her interest in the way that fabric can bind both history and tradition.

The material with which she works is often of personal significance: hand-me-down swatches with the capacity to trigger memories and associations for her. In this respect it is almost the embodiment of the individuals who donated it, making her constructions both relational and generational. Whilst her intricately engineered structures call to mind both architecture and

tailoring there is a self-sufficient reflexive quality to them, they have their own visual logic. Yet they are at the same time capable of implying something of this underlying emotional significance.

Domino’s project grew out of a fascination with airspace and how these ginormous three dimensional spaces exist theoretically above us. She took the space in her bedroom as a starting point for her investigations, dividing it up using cassette tape (exceptionally strong and lightweight) to create flat planes and 3D spaces floating in the air. After making a host of diagrammatic drawings in

situ she gave form to these sections of space, making cardboard moulds and then casting them in plaster of Paris. The casts were satisfying, but it was the paper engineering required to make the moulds that really excited her imagination.

She took this method and applied it to the different sections of airspace initially looking to recreate real life airspace shapes in proportion. She made ‘flat-packed’ versions of these spaces, cutting them from cardboard and paper sheets with a scalpel and then folding and fastening them into what became small models of space. The void left by each cutout immediately felt significant too, directing the viewer to try to figure out how it fits together. Inspired by these shapes and by earlier drawings, she made a whole range of different repeating and systematically created forms from paper and wood.

This way of working has become the mainstay of her practice as she explores increasingly pure, geometric but also irregular forms and explores moving from 2D to 3D and back again.

Surveying Ellen’s output is a bit like trying to crack a cypher with an incomplete code. Elements are recognisable but presented in ways that suggests a different frame of reference. Fragments of the everyday are re-presented so that they hint at something quite individual and diaristic. Drawings drift from delicate articulations of quite understated images into mark-making that reads potentially as

written language, so that whilst much of what we see is discernible, the content of this work feels private. There seems to be a constant play between the interior and exterior world. In one piece, an outside space is made inside a box using what looks like a projection from a camera obscura. Yet this index of what is seen through the

window is daubed in one small section with what looks like a symbol. It’s a small intervention but its effect is quietly unsettling: is it graffiti on the pane, something added to the screen, and is it significant or not? Even when the questions each piece poses have been addressed, there remains at heart something quietly enigmatic about Ellen’s work.

Fatima decided that rather than alluding to the pandemic, its constraints to life and creativity, she would tackle it directly. She began by making very graphic accounts of the virus, working to understand her thinking about her subject. After many iterations her images have gradually become less recognisable as research into virus diagrams has increasingly influenced her working methods. Specific, graphic accounts of covid have become more abstract, as surface pattern,

repetition and chance are used to create iterations of the theme, indirectly describing the replication and mutation of the virus. Cognitive and emotional understanding of the pandemic has gradually been translated into symbolic colour, line and pattern, to an extent mirroring the very necessary scientific and medical abstractions required in tackling it.

Iliana’s work reflects on the everyday labour that goes into making a home in the context of migration. She takes the marigold glove to be emblematic of this often arduous physical, emotional, hidden work. Marigolds also bring to mind low paid cleaning work, a sector where immigrants are massively over represented. Her work alludes to the challenge of trying to establish a safe and secure home in the midst of current xenophobic discourses and policies and/or whilst precarious external economic factors are a constant threat.

In her spare drawings, gloved hands appear in pairs, delicate but graphic, bold, active, anonymous. These line drawings she has reworked as embroidery on domestic fabrics like tea towels, jay cloths and even paper towels. They seem both precious and mundane, her choice of technique ensuring an

acknowledgement of the gendered nature of this work. She has also drawn this motif with rice in a frying pan. The image, painstakingly created, feels delicate, tenuous and, through its cookery associations, vaguely nurturing. Yet whereas her embroidered pieces

bear testament to the time invested, here one shake and the evidence of this work disappears.

Jackie is interested in processes of growth and decay and the relationship between the surface appearance of things and what lies beneath. Initially she tried to find ways to preserve items of fruit, wrapping them in a variety of materials, from tissue paper to porcelain. Rotting from within, some forms became deformed by this process whilst others remained remarkably unscathed. When she finally cut them open this decay was often incredibly beautiful and a tension between

attraction and repulsion is at the heart of her work. She’s also worked with latex mould-making as another means of preserving. The unstable quality of this material led to a struggle when casting to ‘hold together’ the emerging forms and a real

anxiety about ruining what had taken so long to make.

It’s interesting that she doesn’t think consciously about the aesthetics of her work and has no desire to please an audience. Viewers are invited to share in her fascination with cause

and effect, the play between ugliness and beauty and the relationship between an outward calm and what lies within.

Initially Jane began made paintings based on her prints, a formal activity requiring a degree of pre-planning. Increasingly though a less consciously goal-driven form of making emerged as she began fashioning small constructions using ephemera from her immediate environment, perhaps as a corrective, or involuntary response to, thoughts of recent bereavements within the family.

These constructions are both strange and familiar, and seem to function a bit like corn dollies: figures of sorts, where the materials of their making are always visible. The process of their construction is described as being like a ‘nervous tick’, intimately related to the practiced movement of her hands. This determines both how they are constructed and also their scale. This

relationship to the body’s is very present in each piece, which is possibly why they tend to become imbued with human characteristics. Oddly, their unsteady balance seems quietly heroic.

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James’ work appears delicate and fragile but at the same time can seem oddly disquieting. Its surface quality is central to this. The paper on which he works is treated as a medium in its own right, intrinsic to the development of each image. It can be distressed, stained, scratched, pierced or waxed, and often calls to mind skin. His sketchbooks signal how his broader practice functions, with individual leaves often reworked over many months. His

method is slow, meditative and often employs insistent, repetitive actions (whether this is scratching, rubbing, tearing his physical works or in the development of his stop motion animation). Rarely is a motif imposed. Only occasionally do seemingly random number sequences appear, and

these tend to be subsumed by his work process. They read as traces of something specific destined to be lost or damaged. The result in the main is a patient series of quiet, still works whose calm exterior belies an ability to evoke strong feelings.

Centred around the corruptibility of memory, Jane’s project explores the inheritance of a family photo archive: the convergence of collective and individual narratives. Her painting, collage and film works deal with specific moments within this raw footage of her childhood and we are asked to make sense of the illusionary nature of captured moments that are not our own. In each piece the family structure is discernible but the

ambiguous detail leaves nearly all else open to interpretation; obscured and blurred facial features making her subjects unknowable, pointing to the irretrievability of much of the past.

The chromacity of Jane’s palette alludes to the often ‘rose tinted ‘ framing of family

histories, but an undertow of melancholy appears to undermine this. It’s like a cherished memory has become suffused with forgotten pain. With her reappraisal historical photographic evidence her work creates an unsettling prompt for the viewer to likewise reassess their own nostalgic memories of childhood.

Working from small site drawings of the contemporary architecture that forms a major part of her everyday visual experience, Laura has fundamentally reimagined her source material into images that defy easy categorisation. Whilst there’s always a sense that they has evolved from an observed source, they are difficult to pin down. An early part of the process informing her work’s progression

was a series of large-scale reinterpretations of the original sketches in ink made over the course of a single day. These encouraged an immersion in the surface rhythms of the image, a construction and deconstruction of it, and a repeated overlaying of the most arresting motifs. This she has explored more fully with stencilling, where the repetitive possibilities of the technique has created the feeling of something slightly automated,

almost kinetic motifs. This she has explored more fully with stencilling, where the repetitive possibilities of the technique has created the feeling of something slightly automated, almost kinetic. But perhaps the most striking transformation relates to the spacial dynamics of these works, the tension between surface and depth. The evolving visual logic generated by her working processes takes us away from the idea of

an urban landscape that is predominantly grey, flat and about surface to one with hidden depths and surprising stabs of colour. This defamiliarization invites us to perceive the familiar in very unfamiliar ways.

Mark’s work is a meditation of sorts on how the natural and urban environment intersect. It began when the purpose of walking shifted during the first lockdown: no longer directed towards a destination, but becoming an experience in itself. He started mapping his routes, photographing the vistas he encountered (often trees against the sky) and exploring these back in the studio in a variety of materials. But as he became more present in this daily act of walking, his gaze gradually settled on the ground beneath his feet.

Here, on pavements, he encountered the faded ethereal prints left behind by fallen leaves. These fragile, impermanent silhouettes became an impetus for the evolution of a working method where he used found

natural objects (flora, mosses, branches) collected on his walks to mask out sections of paper over which he worked with a variety of materials (including ink and spray paint) before removing them to create a 1:1 index of each form used. This play between

absence and presence creates an echo, perhaps suggesting something of how we carry within us these small interactions with nature, how noticing can inoculate us against the anxiety of feeling hemmed in by an unrelenting, often austere urban environment.

Loss and ways to pay homage have been the impetus for Mina’s output. In the midst of an emotionally challenging situation, the sorting and rescue of a number of artefacts (predominantly animal figurines) perhaps marked the unconscious start of her visual

research. Subsequently she has explored a number of different ways to respond to this collection, allowing sometimes quite impulsive making to shape her thinking. Large scale paintings are ‘jumping off without knowing’, indicative of her creative journey. Her work never tries to explain itself and is never explicit about its subject matter. Lately she has been making ink drawings of this collection of animal

toys and ornaments, working with an old dip pen, its broken nib making a beautiful though scratchy line. It’s hard not to see a metaphor of sorts here. In these works there is a tenderness, as well as something less human centric, and a real sense of her communing with her subject.

.

Natalie’s project began with a desire to work with the human figure coupled with an uncertainty about how explicit its depiction ought to be. It led her to experiment with different ways of masking and obscuring this central motif, often employing aspects of print technique with everyday ephemera: the inked texture of netting from fruit packaging for example has been used regularly as a foil, as a means of camouflage. It’s given rise to a working process

involving multiple layerings, where traces of this activity have come to direct not just the formal arrangement of each image, but also its mood, atmosphere and palette, creating what might be termed the ‘colour of memory’. It’s given rise to ‘dreamy’ non-spaces, causing her to ask questions about how the figure sits within its context and about the

fundamental boundary of the body itself.

Having experimented with a variety of figures, she has migrated towards the female form, culling her collection of images to find poses that ‘tell me something’ so that, whilst each figure is an archetype of sorts, there is a tangible link back to herself. Developing her work, what has emerged

is a fascinating contradiction: the greater the number of layers she adds, the more she seems to uncover something essential, almost psychological in her figural traces.

Rosie’s paintings and drawings deal with the possibility and uncertainty of growth of natural forms. A recurring motif is the rose hip bud, often represented as a singular form. It is observed with an almost alarming intensity, often with the aid of

a magnifying glass, yet her work couldn’t be more distantly related to botanical illustration. Her depictions are visceral and bodily; the red of the bud, and the way

the sticky physicality of each work’s surface often subsumes its image. Sustained visual research depicting the stages of transition after bloom has given her an innate feel for her subject matter and she increasingly focuses on the material qualities

of her medium to capture an almost painful sense of renewal. Projecting, rescaling and overlaying her initial drawings, she has created an open-ended and ongoing exploration in paint of the promise and fragility in the repeating forms.

Sabrina’s project revolves around the physical properties of a growing collection of throwaway or low-key materials, often involved in packaging. Testing their innate qualities, she cuts, separates, re-orders and transforms them. She has retooled the use of tape and glue-gun from hidden enablers into identifiable elements of her constructions. Her approach alternates between being very methodical and chaotic, typified by the careful cataloguing and analysing

of her results. This has even extended to making sound recordings of materials under deconstruction. Yet out of this order and disorder there is an obvious pleasure in the stuff of her making. She identifies touch as key, and this has

caused her to reinvent her materials in quite unexpected ways, often resulting in hybrid forms somewhere between 2 and 3-D. The materials of their making are sometimes recognisable and sometimes not. Everything she produces comes

almost entirely from detritus and her work’s delicate and complex structures ask questions about the volume of material normally discarded and by association, the impact of this on the wider environment.

Sara’s project emerged from thoughts about restriction and freedom whilst living on a small sailing boat during the first lockdown. From this immersive, meditative experience part of her focus became the centrality of the wind to her existence. She set about finding ways to capture this, ultimately deciding to use the power of the wind itself to make drawings. Taping a piece of paper on deck and placing the tip of a pencil

on its surface (attached to the boom by a piece of string) changes in the direction of the wind created a series of line drawings.

Whereas sailing harnesses the wind to shape a direction of travel, with these drawing she limited her agency

allowing chance a significant role. These images describe visually an element that is invisible. And each has a temporal dimension, with some drawings made over many hours. The challenge she has set herself is how to find meaningful ways to relate her site work to studio making: does it document, plan or mirror in some way her fieldwork?

Sally is interested in how different approaches change the way a familiar object is experienced. Her project is rooted a rigorous research programme examining the effect of iterative working in a variety of media including drawing, casting, collage, printmaking, painting and photography.

Throughout she has used a primary source artefact, a classic Bialetti espresso

maker. By limiting one of the variables in this way she has created a valuable constraint, one that has challenged her to continually reinvent her processes to keep herself engaged. She acknowledges an impatience to resolve things and so this steadfast engagement with a domestic object, is both interesting and tactically astute. It acts as

a kind of catalyst for a restless experimentation and a rapid turnover of material whilst maintaining a common thread. The works she creates spark unexpected moods and associations leading to new areas of research which are pursued in a cycle of exploration and learning.

Samia’swork mediates on the nature of her history of lute playing and its broader cultural significance. She wondered why she had ceased and she began her project by making drawings of herself performing in her youth. These felt perhaps a little tentative and a desire for a more concrete connection with her subject led her to take custody of the family instrument from her brother. What followed

was a series of increasingly animated drawings and paintings made from direct observation, often at speed, where the rhythm of her mark-making began to convey something of the joy of performance.

Her work often oscillates between traditional, schematic forms of representation and something less formal, as when she listens to the

music and draws the notes. And flipping between oil, watercolour and charcoal there is a sense of an accumulation of experience where these different practices have cross pollinated into a visual language with quite descendible aesthetic qualities. Her drive to work things out through doing has accented the performative aspects of her drawing and painting, allowing her to communicate more fully the intrinsic qualities of her music making.

Sally’s work investigates the potential of systematic and repetitive methods of working. A painting series explores the processes of revealing and concealing, construction and destruction. Multiple layers of paint and paper are applied and then partially removed, the final painting emerging slowly and meditatively, the result of many small decisions and the process itself. The desire to

explore a similar repetitive technique while harnessing more elements of accident and chance, led to a series of multi-layered monotypes.

Interested in the chance element introduced by ‘found’ objects, Sally began printing using pieces of discarded chocolate wrappers and wax paper. Working with understated colour she   

initially made prints that were quite identifiable indexes of each fragment of paper. Not content with the limited ‘history’ of these papers, she began to create falsely aged papers, manipulating them by folding and burning – both by flame and with chemicals. These papers eventually disintegrate, materially

effecting the performance and shape of each printed piece. Gradually Sally increased the number of printed layers, trusting more in the process; she also migrated towards black. The resulting works are a potent manifestation of her intensely repetitive process. There is something elemental and mineral-like about their rich blackness, the visible image turning into textured surface. The sense of time embedded in these prints is striking

Much of Sandra’s diverse output is linked by the preponderance of one colour: deep red. Here she identifies an autobiographical link, connecting it at a visceral level to the colour of the earth in many of the places she has lived, especially Kenya.

Her work says something about place and (un)rootedness. It’s born of restless experimentation with a plethora of methods and materials, appearing to oscillate between the

implication of something the size of a continent (or even planetary) and that of a tiny specimen of earth. At times it can look like ore and at others becomes more personal and internal, its physicality hinting at a connection with the body, where history and life experience are carried within its physical form.

Sue’s project revolves around a hidden wooded space discovered on her daily walk and her attempts to capture its very particular atmosphere. She has paid close attention in situ, made drawings from memory and generated monotypes from an array of images gathered on site.

What typifies her practice is a careful, immersive approach and close attention to detail. It’s given rise to a number of slow discoveries about her relationship to this

place. Drawing comes to act as a form of meditation, an opportunity to be transported and ultimately have a different perception of the woods. The dreamlike images she creates imply a sense of mystery, inviting the viewer to reflect on a different kind of relationship with nature. And more recent works have involved more selective depictions, accenting the uniqueness of each encounter with this space.

Tatiana feels a strong affinity for drawing. She allows herself to be led by its familiarity and expressive potential. At times she works solely with the abstract tensions created by the medium, and at others she allows these applications to help an image to suggest itself. Her recent drawings have an autobiographical quality (lived, imagined and remembered) and in this context individual images can be quite

deceptive. What might initially read as a fairly straightforward depiction of a domestic scene can come to feel quite loaded.

These are principally images of confinement, about being caught in someone else’s space. They can feel claustrophobic and

overwhelming, with odd perspectives or chaotic distribution of visual elements. Yet increasingly there’s the sense of drawing carried out as a small meditative act, as a way of finding beauty in everyday things. Some images are quite complex,

others more cursory (or simply the record of her hands feeling the paper’s surface), but they all give the impression of drawing as a place to hold her thoughts, an activity offering solace in an impossibly difficult situation.

microclimate


The first national lockdown in March demanded a seismic shift in group behaviour which as a psychology teacher, I found both strange and exhilarating.  Suddenly we had permission to stop, to stay at home, to be vigilant.

We had time to notice small things, neglected details in our domestic hinterland, to look and to listen …

Where we live, close to the forest edge, on the perimeter of a feeder road to London’s North Circular, the sudden drop in traffic volume gave way to a quieter soundscape & a different air quality in the microclimate of our suburban garden.

I found my way into it’s overgrown and secluded corners where I could watch & listen  undisturbed.  The tactile qualities of these quiet and shared spaces came into focus. 

As we were not going out, I began to play with what came to hand – lockdown loo rolls and off cuts from rampant garden pruning – this precious garbage was the fodder for my work.  

A theme emerged … the tension between freedom and containment

that arises when the rules of collective behaviour shift…

Perhaps it’s possible to discern a play  between forms and beings with a degree of freedom to conform or defy clear rules in this work?   

Shifting rules produce unpredictable results… and chaos spreads the virus…

Recommendations #3 Three decades of William Kentridge’s animations available online – this week only!

Don’t miss William Kentridge online film festival

September 29 to October 3, 2020

at 5pm each day on Goodman Gallery website (https://www.goodman-gallery.art/film-programme-william-kentridge)

Waiting for the Sibyl by William Kentridge

PROGRAMME:

29 September

Drawing Lesson One: In Praise of Shadows (2012), 1 hour 2 minutes

30 September

Second-Hand Reading (2013), 7 minutes

Waiting for the Sibyl (2020), 6 minutes 3 seconds

1 October

Drawings for Projection – Part 1

Johannesburg, 2nd Greatest City After Paris (1989), 8 minutes 2 seconds

Monument (1990), 3 minutes 11 seconds

Mine (1991), 5 minutes 50 seconds

Sobriety, Obesity and Growing Old (1991), 8 minutes 22 seconds

Felix in Exile (1994), 8 minutes 43 seconds

2 October

Drawing for Projection – Part 2

History of the Main Complaint (1996), 5 minutes 50 seconds

WEIGHING… and WANTING (1998), 6 minutes 20 seconds

Stereoscope (1999), 8 minutes 22 seconds

Tide Table (2003), 8 minutes 50 seconds

Other Faces (2011), 9 minutes 45 seconds

3 October

Premiere of City Deep (2020) on The Art Newspaper website, 9 minutes 41 seconds

Year 1 Thursday: Drawing and Print Modules

Claire Parker Instagram: @funny_little_marks

Being encouraged to experiment with both instinctive mark-making and rigorous perspectival drawing has brought out a tension between freedom and constraint which has felt very real during life in lockdown.

Domino Pateman Instagram: @dominopateman

I enjoyed the drawing exercises we were given and, in lockdown, being forced to use only the space and equipment we had. Following the instructions in the exercises and riffing off them, made me realise I was interested in space itself, how it might be sliced up in different ways and put together again – and how exciting it is to try to represent that as a drawing and in 3D.

Ellen Thornton Instagram: @quiet_ellen


London Bridge Hot Desking

Drawing on old microeconomics text

Francesca Giuliano Instagram: @francesca.giuliano.here

Drawing has been a revelation for me on CLFA. It has released a lot of creative energy that I hope will, in turn, inform other areas of my practice. A nice surprise was noticing a long-running love of parallel freehand lines and unfinished dangling threads in my textile work from many years ago that is re-emerging in my drawings.

James C

Untitled
Charcoal and chalk on paper.
Untitled
Charcoal and chalk on paper.

James Shahdin

Developing and using the contrast between darkness and light as a vehicle to reflect the social and economic climate that has changed throughout my teens and into adulthood.

Laura Madeley Instagram: @lauraraborealis

Today is not just for today

When lockdown wasn’t a lockdown, revisiting previous drawing projects to explore home-based print techniques and create new work was the obvious solution. Breathing new life into a site-specific project about the solar cycle gave me space to reconnect with ideas of time and transition. These images are of work in progress created on the last Saturday session of yr 1. The title is taken from tutor Brian Hodgson’s advice, words which landed somewhere in my head and haven’t left yet, bringing with them ideas about how to combine print, paint and drawing in my practice in year 2.

Mark Engel Instagram: @markusengel27


Return of Nature
An experiment in mark making with charcoal, incense and singeing paper

Dreamscape mark making
An experiment in trance like mark making using charcoal, tea bags, frottage and baby oil.

Nasrin Parvaz Website: nasrinparvaz.org Instagram: @nasrin.parvaz


Under lockdown

Under lockdown

Natalie Dee Instagram: @art.journey4

Down Memory Lane

The human psyche has always fascinated me, but it wasn’t until I started this term that I realised how much my work is trying desperately to unravel the mysteries of the mind. This project started with drawing a random cube and some screwed up paper and ended up evoking a surprising childhood memory. Inspired by this process, I am now experimenting with making prints using random objects like masking tape and plastic bags, hoping that these unintentional marks will eventually evoke more and more memories.

Rosie Mayston

Castles in the sky during lockdown

I moved from work grounded in observation to drawings and objects tied to internal states, the result of which was darker and more raw.

Samia Mallek Instagram: @samia.mallek1

Freedom after lockdown

Experimented with ink, charcoal, teabags and watercolours which lead me to an abstract figurative painting.

Sandra Beidas Instagram: @nomadicpens2018

Unconscious memories

When I put these images together for this blog I noticed there were recurring marks and vocabulary. Yet they were produced at different times and with no conscious thoughts of reproducing the same imagery. Are they subconscious memories of the many times I have spent gazing down at landscapes from the air or are they related to something else? Looking forward to CLAF2 to probe more deeply!

Tatiana Solowjowa Instagram: @taniczka_s


Emotional subconscious


Exploration of inner landscapes

Year 1 Tuesday Final Drawing Research Module: Narrative and Process

Once upon a time, someone opened a box…..

There was wiring, and spanners

The machine came to life

And transported us to a strange island

The home of a goddess

And a benevolent alien.

The little bird was safe in the grass.

We set out across the hills

The weather was controlled by a sleepy beast

It was raining when we got to the city

It was a place of many different forces

People had adapted to live there

It was time for us to fly

But how would we ever get home again?

Thank you Mina for curating this and for your overarching narrative interpretation,

Tony

OTHER ROOMS PROJECT

PROJECT: O T H E R  R O O M S

CALL FOR CONTRIBUTIONS

“There exists for each one of us a house of dream-memory that is lost in the shadow of the past,” says Gaston Bachelard in his Poetics of Space; “thanks to the house, a great many of our memories are housed, and if the house is a bit elaborate, if it has … nooks and corridors, our memories have refuges that are all the more clearly delineated. All our lives we come back to them in our daydreams.”

THE CONCEPT

OTHER ROOMS started as an investigation of domestic spaces by way of building small-scale, portable, assemblage structures, and it has been growing into an ever-expanding installation inside my home studio. OTHER ROOMS explores domestic interiors as spaces moulded by real and fictional memories and by daydreaming. The geometry of these domestic spaces is transformed by the way they are remembered; the joys and horrors that have happened within their walls; the stories that were weaved in their corners. Their nooks and crannies are resting places for human intimate lives. As the physicality of the room dissolves with the passing of time, the only way to experience it is to conjure its fiction.

Autobiographical to an extent, OTHER ROOMS aim to trigger the viewer’s own intimate narratives and dreamscapes. After all, “the house is one of the greatest powers of integration for the thoughts, memories and dreams of [hu]mankind. The binding principle in this integration is the daydream.”

CALL FOR CONTRIBUTIONS

OTHER ROOMS reaches out to include other stories as it grows to encompass the room it is installed.

Contributors are invited to send me

* a personal memory (story, impression, dream) – connected to a domestic interior (room, corner, piece of furniture, object) of their past, and

* a piece of cardboard and/or any other materials they wish, including photographs

.

The text can be as long and as descriptive as contributors wish. Contributions can be anonymous.

I will use the materials and text sent to me to create a three-dimensional structure which will be my interpretation of the memory. If the text contributors send is used in any subsequent publication, permission to reproduce it will be sought. The structure will be incorporated in the installation. If the contributor wishes they can respond to the finished piece any way they wish (drawing, painting, film, performance). The contributor’s response may be included in the installation.

OTHER ROOMS will conclude with an exhibition held inside the installation (subject to social distancing rules). Possible outcomes include a video piece and a publication.

See the work on my website http://www.litoapostolakou.com

and

on Instagram http://www.instagram.com/inklinks

Please send your contribution to

Lito Apostolakou

41 Donovan Avenue

London N10 2JU

or if you live within an 8-mile radius I can walk to you and pick it up.

Any questions, contact me on Whatsapp or email me on l.apostolakou@gmail.com

Here is an extract from Proust’s Remembrance of Lost Time, vol. I on memories of rooms

“These shifting and confused gusts of memory never lasted for more than a few seconds … But I had seen first one and then another of the rooms in which I had slept during my life, and in the end I would revisit them all in the long course of my waking dream: rooms in winter, where on going to bed I would at once bury my head in a nest, built up out of the most diverse materials, the corner of my pillow, the top of my blankets, a piece of shawl, the edge of my bed, and a copy of an evening paper, all of which things I would contrive, with infinite patience of birds building their nest, to cement into one whole; rooms where, in a keen frost, I would feel the satisfaction of being shut in from the outer world … and where, the fire keeping in all night, I would sleep wrapped up, as it were, in a great cloak of snug and savoury air … in a sort of alcove without walls, a cave of warmth dug out of the heart of the room itself … or rooms in summer … where the moonlight striking upon the half-opened shutters would throw down to the foot of my bed its enchanted ladder (…)

Other Rooms installation

Other Rooms installation in progress.

qrf

Picking up a box of materials from the first contributor.

The quoit is skimming across the deck…

The quoit is skimming across the deck, it lands with a wobble. I win a prize. This is my first memory. I am on the deck of the Queen Mary transitioning from being three years old to being four. I am somewhere on the sea between England and Sri Lanka, or is it Sri Lanka and England? Exactly where, and even the direction of travel matters not.

I am mixed, mixed race.

Some say mixed up. I don’t, I am privileged, though sometimes confused. I certainly discombobulate others, but I’m no nincompoop.

Picture1

 

Wendy Manel de Silva, May 2020

WIP (work in progress)

IMG_2852

Inhabiting and journeying through the house,

I live in my brown skin – always.

I live in my rusty house, the rust chosen to echo and fix

memories of the disappearing industrial landscape

of my English husband‘s hometown.

It’s been my home for over 15 years.

Like a hermit crab, I’ve found,

sometimes made myself, several homes in London,

the city I landed in, on a BOAC aeroplane in January 1971.

Enoch was dreaming of bloody rivers.

What greeted me on my journey from the airport

was a cold, cold, grey sky

blackish sludge on the edge of the road

and children skating on the duck pond in Broomfield Park.

 

I’d moved from  Park Road in Havelock Town

named after Arthur Havelock, the British Governor of Ceylon,1890 -1895,

to stay with my generous aunt and her family

in an upper level maisonette in Palmers Green which is named after a field,

Palmer’s Field, in records that date back to 1204.

My parents, eking out their Sri Lankan exchange controlled £50 allowance

lodged in a bedsit nearby.

My two brothers dispatched north, to Manchester, for a sojourn with our maternal grandparents who lived in Fallowfield, neat Platts Fields.

The family rumour is that Nanny was disinherited, why we never found out.

But we learnt, 50 years later, that there were probably two sides to that story.

My Grandpa’s sister spoke Ancient Greek. Her (uncorroborated) history included being headmistress of Manchester Grammar School for Girls.

 

I did not mean to end up reading like a page out of out of ancestry.co.uk.

Indeed, with a start I realise I can’t nestle in there.

People; kind, curious, nervous, alarmed, racist maybe,

will ask me where I’m from, where I’m really from.

Maybe in one sense they are right,

I’m not really from Highbury in North London.

 

My art practice is an attempt to answer that question for them.

For me, it’s a question that keeps presenting multiple answers

with shimmering lights and black holes

which I explore when I’m feeling strong.

It’s about living in my skin, more or less comfortably.

It’s about living in this world, on this planet,

from before I was born, to after I am gone.

 

 

Wendy Manel de Silva, May 2020

 

Symphony for the speechless

Aurelia Duplouich May 2020
Sound Collage Duration: 3 min 41 seconds

The idea of making a soundtrack came from being in lockdown in a farm in the French Alps, isolated from any other human beings apart from my own family and two farmers. Like many, I experienced this time as a moment of introspection and because everything around me was about nature, the cycle of life and death became very present.

I started teaching myself how to mix tracks for my vocal harmony group, so my new routine included lots of time spent practising vocal parts, mixing them with others and basically producing music rather than making it.
I began recording sounds of my life here: my kids playing with newborn lambs and shepherds dogs, or walking in the fields, but I have also given them lines to read. They decided it was more fun to act them out. The incredible variety of sounds in an isolated rural place I hope were giving an idea of how beautiful and unspoilt it all was here.

In the same time, we were witnessing death all the time, not just the death toll that was painfully enunciated at the evening news, but also right here, a couple of meters away, a dog dying of old age, chicken eaten by the foxes one night, a baby lamb slaughtered by the shepherds dog because he wouldn’t feed….and more tragically, many pine trees dying of viruses, a direct consequence of recurring droughts and rise in temperature.

The idea of a collage was inspired by Robert Rauschenberg and his view that anything could be used, not just what is aesthetically pleasing. I have, in the same way, left mistakes, spontaneous laughs or curses, background noises and done a very basic editing.

I’d love to continue developing this piece back into a proper 4 parts symphony type composition, and collaborate with a performer/mime or signing-artist to develop a full installation of it. AD

Composition /Voice: Aurelia Duplouich
Piano: Ricardo Gosalbo Guenot
Readings: Evie Raford, Teo Raford, Noah Raford

Image: Aurelia Duploouich – Mapping research
Aurelia - Mapping Research