Rejected work from the ‘Open West’ application.

New work from BLURRED series

Last Friday I turned 55 (incidentally, the same age as Carl Hyde the lead singer out of Underworld). As part of my birthday celebrations my wife I went to see Underworld (the band, not the film) at the Sage Gateshead. It was the last gig of the British leg of their 20th ‘dubnobasswithmyheadman’ anniversary tour.  The gig was great, if a little quite at first (I could actually hear people chatting, which for me as middle aged rocker and dance fiend is a bit of a no, no!!) but the sound was superb as always in the large hall at the Sage. This being said, even after a few ales, I had a strange sense of detachment. No matter how hard I tried I could not invoke a hint of the feelings that crashed through my body twenty years earlier as my wife and I stood in front of a stack of speakers in the sweaty bowels of Newcastle University at level 2, being altered both physically and mentally by the pounding bass lines. At the end of that gig, we were both dripping wet and elated. Last Saturday I felt strangely empty and all I had gained was a pair of sort feet due to standing on a slope for two hours.  I thought about this at length and I came to the conclusion, for me, that trying to take something from the past and reinvent it today is simply not going to work.

And so it has been with my practice. When I began work again in 2012 I drew so heavily on what I had produced 20 years earlier that the new work was going nowhere but sideways.  However, gradually, and through the help of my good friend and fellow artist Paul Brewster, this has all but been left behind.  And the new work in progress BLURRED is, for me, going to new levels and places I have not reached before, like my body and mind did 20 years ago.

3 images of the new work in progress are attached, as well as the work rejected from the ‘Open West’.  If you are interested in video work, please check out the on line portal ‘The Uninstite’ some great work – links attached for this and to Mr Brewster’s website.

PS. If you are still entering national art competitions, NOA is offering two entries for the price of one during the month of March.



It is amazing when out of the blue some stranger or distant acquaintance shows a deep interest and acknowledgment of one’s work. This happened to me last Saturday and what a tonic it was!

Late last year I began to attend meetings run by the Newcastle Philosophical Society in an attempt to draw (excuse the pun) a different perspective on my practical work. It has been a somewhat uneven experience, but worthwhile I think. The encounter with the distant acquaintance occurred at the last meeting of the NPS, when another participant with whom I had a ‘nodding’ acknowledgement, struck up a conversation with me as we walked to grab a coffee after the meeting. He had looked at my website, watched my video work, listened to my music and read my poetry, all of which he was deeply interested in.  He saw things in all of it that related to his own life, especially the poetry.  This lead to a good hour of conversation, philosophical conversation, on all aspects of art and life.  It is unbelievable how one positive conversation can propel you forward, give you the inspiration to be more creative and see there is true worth in the work you do.

So in the coming week give someone a morsel of positivity, it is well worth it, for you and whoever you encounter.

PS. The new series of work is progressing well, very excited about the visuals that are starting to appear. Also ‘The Unstitute’, and on line video portal has accepted two of my videos for their next event: ‘(dis)Corporate Bodies: Undermining the Institution’.