Into the studio with my studio mate Sue and the whole day spent making a huge wall painting for our collaborative work on the regeneration of Dartford Central Park. It is to take up a recessed wall in the gallery.

After the technical hassles and a tussle with the aged OHP we settled to working like two small children with the crayon box- mostly engaged with our enterprise but with the occasional little spat about line or colour or negative space.

Exhausted but pleased with the outcome we finally locked up at 9pm. So much for supper.

It will be interesting to see what we think of it when it resurfaces for hanging at the end of the month as it’s now carefully rolled up in plastic.

I like to mull my work over and I invariably leave it up so I can prowl round it trying to catch it unawares when it’s not looking at me.


Well it’s been a while since I have posted here and now I seem to have been seduced into a Forum conversation as well….. calling it a ‘virtual coffee house’ was a pretty stealthy marketing ploy I thought!

Last week -a trip to Margate to attend a print demo and talk day attached to the Pushing Print exhibition. A long way for me but I felt that as I had work in the show I should use the opportunity to met the selectors and other artists and generally show my face. A really pleasant relaxed day and new connections made.

And my painting has arrived in Germany…hooray……….can’t wait to get out there and check it is ok. As it’s not gone to a gallery but to a German Trust I feel it is still my baby, my responsibility until it’s hung and presented at the beginning of November.

This week- a great evening at the Fleapit in Shoreditch. Last summer I was invited to exhibit with Accident and Emergence [a group of London based artists] and the collaboration goes on…………this time an evening of crits. Hang the work, listen to everyone else talk about it and then add what you wish. The best bit of the old college days and so useful- 26 of us made for a late evening, but worth the effort and the London and Kentish artists are beginning to mix naturally which is nice.


Pack up the suitcase – off by SquEasy Jet to Glasgow to visit the daughter………..a great excuse for gallery visiting. My other half says my tail goes up and my nose goes down. He calls it my ‘truffling mode’ as yet again I become insanely happy and overcome with the need to dive into every gallery and exhibition space and emerge triumphant with an armful of flyers and yet another couple of ‘must sees’ that I didn’t know I had to see until then….

This weekend’s out of body experience was a visit to the Glasgow Gallery to look at the Peter Howson’s. The man is a legend in my book but this was a lesson in how even the strongest work in the world just cannot survive a fairground hang of row upon row of works. His strong line and strident colour became something quite other here- a sea of colour and movement; as though a single new surreal work had taken over the gallery space. Which in a way I suppose it had.

Next- a trip to 103 Trongate, the new home of the Glasgow Print Studio. What a space- every print maker’s fantasy football team. The ultimate Lottery own goal – which it is- huge amounts of dosh and a printer’s palace on three floors to show for it. All housed in Glasgow’s brand new Centre for Creativity. Surely the last dying breath of a pre-recession lottery funded era now moribund and gasping in the corner somewhere out of sight.

Into the car with the daughter and back to Edinburgh. We head straight to the friendly face of The Fruit Market Gallery. Always great shows and a fabulous place to take friends not much versed in all of this. No pretensions – just explanations, and books to sit and read and videos of the artist to listen to and watch.

Eva Hesse; Studiowork. ‘ Rather than being simply technical explorations these objects radically put into question conventional notions of what sculpture is.’ So says the catalogue.

No they don’t. Her finished pieces do.

‘Materials testing’ is what we called it at college and as such they are interesting in that one feels somewhat voyeuristic. I am sure Eva would have been horrified to see bits and pieces found in her studio after her death given huge white gallery space. They seem to flop like little dabs out of water in the spotlights and float away into the great white haze………sad to have been unable to meet our expectations.


To London to London – again.

Printmaker friend and I and our respective spouses. Neither spouse is an artist but they have been so dutifully exposed to it all that their critical facilities have been honed beyond what they once would have thought possible- or desirable- or they would own up to in the pub.

Anish Kapoor at the R.A. Didn’t let me down. The perfect show to take the male date to.

Sex and fun – always a great combination and doesn’t fail here. In the courtyard huge piles of mirrored balls suspended in the sky reflect you, your mates, the R. A. , the sky, the universe……makes you want to giggle.

Inside the amazing colours of his early pigment sculptures sing to me of India, Turkey Tibet and Morroco- of souks and spice powders and sari colours and silks……….sadly age is beginning to weary them and the cardboard pro- formas are beginning to show through and the magic trick dies.

Onward to the fairground hall of mirrors and the line police who move meaningfully forward should you look as if you might breathe out in your excitement and your breath touch the surface……

To no avail. The proletariat are at play in here……..fattening, slimming, and rippling into oblivion.

A room resembling nothing more than a builder’s yard with grey piles of extruded cement leaves me cold and kills the moment.

A colossal iron megalith flowers internally into the softest vulval opening, and then a trade- mark, fibreglass, car- shop- red paint job shouts Sex from on high and suddenly we are in deep.

The cannon – great performance art; macho sex, red wax, heavy, pounding, violent art. Maleness leaving a shocking red wax mess all over the R.A.’s pristine walls……….and then a train of red wax, slow and ponderous leaves the tiniest tingling gap of light as it passes through the arch……..

..and I spy David Hockney, just as he always is- white hat, stick, hearing aids, watching the same gap as me………. and totally unremarked- how does he do that?

A walking Warhol style icon and no one sees him- the truly invisible man of the people.