Hello to everyone we met at Fabrica on Thursday at the AIR Open Dialogue event. It was a great opportunity to meet a lot of new people and to put faces to names of people who we felt we already knew through visits to their web-sites or blogs.
Roz and I, along with Elpida Hadzi Vasileva and Rosemary Shirley had been invited to talk about key issues for our future practice – a subject which has been consistently used at AIR events to open the dialogue between artists.
We took along Roz’s three legged stool which Roz used to explain how she visualises our collaboration. She talked about the “wobbliness” of being an artist and the need to operate at the edge of stability, and how she sees the collaborative relationship as providing a third leg which might provide steadiness at the edge. She went on to expand on this notion, saying that if we two collaborators are then viewed each as three legged stools, between us we have a grand total of not just four legs, but six legs on which we could cover a lot of ground. It all conjures up a slightly comical image, but describes how we hope the relationship will work for us.
My issues, as an artist still in the early “feeling my way” stages of my career, revolve firstly around “support”; how to build a support network through which I can get appropriate advice for all the different aspects of my practice – professional, creative and developmental, and then, secondly, how to maintain a balance between the development of all those separate areas of my practice while still retaining the integrity of my work as well as generating income to support my practice.
Roz focused on the immediate issues concerning our new collaboration. How will the collaborative process work for us? Will there still be time and space for us to maintain our individual work? How will we work together? What if our strengths and weaknesses are the same? Will we become too stable, too steady and lose the excitement of "the edge"? What will we gain from the collaboration, and what will we have to give up? These were some of many questions raised.
Elpida and Rosemary, artists at different stages of their careers, raised other issues, and a foundation was laid for an evening of very interesting and informative discussion where a whole range of subjects were covered.
One thing which came up almost incidentally was that several people expressed slight frustration at not being able to add a comment to the a-n blog, so for the time being, if anyone wants to communicate with us about our blog, we would love to hear from you via the e-mail addresses which can be found on our web-sites at http://judithalder-live.co.uk/contact.html or http://www.roz2.co.uk/contact.html