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Back to Hastings this afternoon for our artists talks in the gallery. We were going to film it but for various reasons that didn’t happen. Probably a good thing as these things sometimes are. Everyone was very relaxed, honest, and generous in their talks and the audience happy to ask questions.

It feels very much as if TS has forged a group for ourselves. Maybe filming would have changed that dynamic.

Listening to the artists was fascinating. Cathryn Kemp has been the director and curator throughout and invited her artists purely on the previous work she had seen.

Investing an amazing amount of trust in us all she then waited to see what we would all bring to the table under the banner Telling Stories:Hastings.

Incredibly the show works beautifully. I am told it was easy to hang and you realise why when listening to the artists talk. So many, many similar themes, parallel strands, empathetic connections, interwoven stories…

Lucinda’s video sea piece raging against the death of a brother and the confusion of adoption, the perfection of Martins silent, cold, light filled interiors sliding round the family dynamic. Grace’s beautiful images immortalising her models enacting their own deaths, Helda’s lyrical video of his salt effigys with its strangely spiritual presence pervading the room. Cathryn’s Victorian nightdress worn during a long, long spell in hospital – buried and unearthed in a archeological, forensic dig – a monochrome archive laid out with loving care. Xaverine’s turbulent shredded personal photographic history knitted into a calm, silent relic in a museum case….

Every artist talk wound us closer and closer; Pat, Ray, Helen, Alex, Samantha, Tracy, me….

Actually a film of it would have been extrodinary. Writing about it makes me want to re-run it again. To feel again that sense of excitement as everything meshed together.

Before we did the tea and cakes….