In February of this year I was thrilled to have been awarded an A:N Bursary for Research and Development for GLINT https://www.a-n.co.uk/news/a-n-artist-bursaries-2020-158-artists-receive-a-share-of-over-200000-pounds/ GLINT is an ongoing archive, documenting ‘the moment the work happens’ through the eyes of a series of international artists. This funding was intended to allow me to reimagine the project and give it a physical form – by way of a series of exhibitions and a publication.
This was a really exciting moment, filled with possibilities, future collaborations, potential contacts and new ways of working. I had a budget and action plan all based around travel, studio time, face to face meetings and planning for exhibitions and public events. The following month, everything changed. All of a sudden, everything on my action plan was now ‘against government guidelines’ and effectively illegal as the country and increasingly, the world succumbed to the COVID-19 crisis. This could appear catastrophic to a fledgling project – but creative people find creative solutions, so things could certainly be reworked – but what ultimately made these plans impossible, was the sudden evaporation of time.
In March 2020 my 3 days a week teaching job suddenly swelled way beyond my contracted hours, as I tried to support 50+ increasingly anxious students and see them through their final assessments. In addition to this, I now had two children at home who needed to be home-schooled. The organisation that i was a trustee of was in chaos and friends and family were struggling – everyone needed support as they tried to adjust to this new normal that had suddenly descended on everyone. The inevitable impact of all of this was that the development of GLINT, along with several other projects I was working on, had to go into hiatus. This situation has been echoed across the country (and world) with many people finding they are dealing with these challenges without the benefit of a regular income and with many of the income sources they relied on being suddenly cancelled. I count myself very lucky for the situation i found myself in, I not only had some funding, but i also had a salary; what I no longer had was time.
So this explains the many, many months that have passed since my first and second blog post and it is no small coincidence that this post has occurred during that first week that my children are finally back at school! So here I am, picking up where i left off and ready to push GLINT beyond the online archive and into a physical form, whatever that might be.
The development of GLINT has been in hiatus, but the project itself has continued running. Back in January we expressed concern as Daniel Staincliffe (our GLINT artist for January) who lives in China, was hindered in his intended work production and travel plans by road blocks, terrifying government warning banners and regular temperature checks as the virus took hold of the country https://www.instagram.com/p/B78JbGfFW2N/?utm_source=ig_web_copy_link We regularly checked on how he was doing, but didn’t truly believe it was all heading our way.
As we reached March, Julie Del’Hopital was already in lockdown in Paris – a conditional which in many ways suited her drawing and animation based practice. Come April, however we started to see the real impact of the pandemic on art practice through the GLINT account, as Maria Hupfield takes over. Here we see how confinement has shaped her practice, when preferred locations and forms of making are no longer available; and the sheer terror, frustration and anxiety about what is to come.
There are many instances following this where artists have been displaced by the pandemic and have had to find new ways of working. But something is certainly very clear, the work is still happening; those GLINT moments are still occurring, even though our way of life has drastically shifted.
The artists that have featured in GLINT and have been mentioned in this post are as follows:
To see the continuing archive of the GLINT project, please visit:
Hello and welcome to this new blog, which documents the conception, discussion, development and progression of GLINT. This project was established in October 2018 and can be viewed here: www.instagram.com/glintproject
Here is how I have introduced myself and the project to the artists involved so far:
Definition: GLINT /ɡlɪnt/
1. a small flash of light, especially a reflected one
Glint explores the circumstance of inspiration. Not so much what inspires the artist, but under what circumstances the work is conceived. I am interested in the moments of clarity which occur between otherwise mundane/academic/corporate/domestic/chaotic/… activity. How work exists alongside, within and between everything else.
Artists (in particular) for whom a significant part of their week involves doing something other than making art; be that teaching, other paid work, academic study, caring for children/family members etc. I acknowledge that for some/many, their art practice may be embedded in these alternative activities – which is fine!
Glint exists on Instagram. Each artist will take over the account for a month and photographically document the moment when the work is conceived. This will vary from person to person. For some, this moment could be when the idea is formed, during some otherwise unrelated activity; or during the act of making work, when the work becomes the work. In both cases, the photo will be of something that represents that moment, in whatever way the artist chooses.
GLINT began in October 2018 and for its first year focused on UK based artists. For year 2, GLINT will involve artists based outside of the UK.
Artists will need to have a smartphone and the Instagram app – although, not having these things will not necessarily be a barrier. I will market and administrate the project.
I have always been interested in how and why art comes into existence; I would like to explore this thought outside of my own experience. I am interested in exploring the diversity of art practice, acknowledging that it extends beyond the conventions of the studio.