So – everybody is still out there in the blog ether; such a good feeling. Thank you.
The last few days I have been feeling my way back, working a little and making forays to exhibitions.
Thursday I went to Battle to the PV of ‘Transititions’ ? a photography exhibition staged by the Pure Art Group that has quietly begun to do more and more for Kent artists. Photography wouldn’t be my first choice for an exhibition an hour away but I went primarily because some of the participants are friends and acquaintances since working in Hastings last year and I fancied being in the company of artists again.
Driving back I mused on how I had approached the show. I know nothing about the finer technicalities of photography ? so I could only approach it using the same critical and interrogatory techniques that I would use in a contemporary art show. Here it was deliberately curated with small name labels at almost floor level and was totally statement free.
I had to look and look and look again. No ?asking? the artist what they thought I was looking at. No clues. I found it strangely liberating.
I realised that when I approach an art show I still approach it in the way I did as an art history degree student many years ago – somewhat combatively- I will stay here until I have worked this out!
With photography I didn’t expect myself to know what I was looking at or to be able to make a meaningful contribution. In fact I spent most of my evening asking photographers about the work, asking basic questions and getting fascinating, complex answers. A lesson in there for sure.
Well now. I feel rather diffident about coming back on here but it seems to be part of the deal for me. Work equals blog…and I haven’t been working for months and months. Following on my last triumphant blog – I had found a lovely studio etc etc …..disaster.
My disabled mother became very ill, I had to give up the studio and she has since sadly died. Since then no studio that I can afford/get to without a season ticket has appeared and I am still hunting…. Everything is still up in the air – selling her home, probate etc etc and it eats into my think time and makes me restless; and the no studio thing.
My patient husband sighs and suggests I become resident artist in the Big Yellow Storage up the road and take all my junk with me. If only. So – enough is enough. The sun is out. I have suddenly become annoyed with my fellow artists having new work and new plans and I badly feel the need to be back at work. So – Plan A- to make a body of work based on six butterfly cases donated to me. The cases are old, decayed to dust in many places and to my eye quite glorious.
Things that have come out of my mother’s death are a lot of revelations [she lost her family in the Holocaust], new relatives and old correspondence. A series of letters have emerged from a young Jewish girl called Margot – a school friend of my mother’s – who wrote to her after being liberated from Belsen. Margot lives in my head at the moment as we try to unravel her history.
My broken butterfly specimens resonate with the vilolence and sadness of her unfolding story. It seems suddenly terribly important that this new piece of work be called ‘Letters from Margot.’ So be it. Back to work. Back to my blog.
Hello..hello if any of you are still out there