In this continued period of solitude and reflection, I’ve been thinking about, on the one hand, the ocean and, on the other, swimming pools. I spend a lot of time with both my young daughters at the sea and in swimming pools; and both are competitive pool and open water swimmers. I say spend, but of course the pools have been closed since mid March and, until recent weeks, no-one was allowed to go into the sea. There are no competitions in either still or open water. However, we’re really grateful that we can now go into the sea to swim, and to surf or paddle, and are looking forward to the pools possibly opening next month. We’ll take this time of no competitions to get back to basics and just enjoy being in the water again. My recent series Swimming Pools and Salt Lines is based upon these water experiences and the differing chemicals present in salt and pool water and their effect on the human body and emotions. Male and female symbolism are present. The upward symbol of the male (a rusty projection) in the ocean paintings reflects the expectations of males to be stronger, more assertive and…
I am currently focusing my energies on new artwork in homage to my beautiful hometown of St Ives. During this solitary period, I am extremely grateful that it is possible for me and my family to still be able to take daily walks. I am finding new inspirations to be joyful of each day. The works emanating from these walks are melding the natural and man-made landscapes I encounter daily and also draw from what remains of the fishing industry. And, in these times, knowing there is so much sadness out there, the artworks are reflecting the almost eerie sense of stillness and calm that has descended upon St Ives. Here is a sneak preview of my progress, alongside an image of inspiration.
I’m very pleased to have works selected to feature in two open exhibitions taking place over the festive season. The first is the annual Christmas Open at St Ives Society of Artists in St Ives, Cornwall – where I have Metro 2 on display from16 November 2019 until 2 January 2020. The second is at the biannual Imagine Falmouth at Falmouth Art Gallery in Falmouth, Cornwall – where I have Porthmeor Revisted 2 on show from 23 November 2019 until 18 January 2020. There’s lots of good work available at both open shows if you fancy getting a nice present for someone – or for yourself. And it makes a welcome diversion from politics!
It’s your final chance to visit my exhibition, Red River, at Heartlands, Redruth, Cornwall as it ends on 8 November. You could say that it ends with a bang as it finishes just after Heartlands annual, free bonfire night and firework spectacular. This event, now the largest firework display in Cornwall, sees over ten thousand local people and their families come together, for an event that has become a celebration of the regeneration of the Pool area and its wonderful community. Heartlands is a great space – and particularly for showcasing my art because of the connections to mining, and to the natural and post mining landscape of West Cornwall. The engine house, the gardens, the play area, the conference centre, the workspaces and of course the Red River café are all great spaces to spend time. I’ve thoroughly enjoyed exhibiting here.