110 v Hammer Action

The installation of the panels went very well. The pupils were very excited and the commonest remark during the whole day was ‘there’s mine’. Even the head teacher said it 3 times.

Its a very nice school and they are proud of what they did. Teachers and their assistants, dinner ladies, caretakers not to mention pupils have been loitering, looking, pointing and gigeling all day, (in a very polite way I have to say).

I would formally like to appolagise again to the class on the otherside of the wall who had to put up with over 60 holes made by:



Hammer action

for alot of their day.

and thanks to Jo as well for the whole thing. (My invoice will be in the post by Friday by the way).


I am working with a friend Jo on this. She runs this Community Arts outfit called Animate. I have worked with her on several occasions before, and her projects are very community focused.

I have to put this together. There are 400 tiles. Each one done by a primary school pupil and a few dinner ladies and teachers etc.

The whole thing will form a frieze and I will be installing it on Monday.

You know those old school photos of the whole school. The ones where there are five rows of students all pozing formally, the oldest year standing on benches at the back and the youngest ones kneeling down to form the front row. A record of the whole school community.

This kind of reminds me of that. It is actually a celebraion of the year 2008, as this was when their new school was built.

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Here is the cartoon. Not a drawing with large ears and big nose, no thats Cosmo.

In the case of mosaic the cartoon is sacrificial. This means it gets destroyed in the making process, (cartoons for frescos survive the ordeal).


St. Helens Hospital. Ward Names Mosaic.

I did not know wether to put this post in community or history? So I put it in community because: This project seems to have ended up depicting the history of a community.

The NHS Trust at St. Helens Hospital have gone to great lengths to represent the community they serve in this project.

I did not have to run workshops or carry out consulations with users of the NHS Services in St.Helens as the Trust acted on their behalf. It saved me several research trips up there, but this was replaced by having to do eight drawings before the commitee was happy with the content and subject for the work. Working with a commitee gives a different end result compared to working with the public. I think the commissioner may feel they have more control.

I am pleased they are pleased if you see what I mean.

The content for this work has become alot more specific than I originally planned, due to design revisions. The result of this, is it has become probably the most intricate mosaic I have made. I asked for a 2 month extension on the time schedule, which has been granted.

My last mosaic was a challenge due its large scale. This will be a challenge due to its small scale. (not that it is small, the increase of detail without an increase in size is the challange).



I think everyone probably wants to belong to a group of some kind. No one really wants to be an ‘outsider’.

Some kind of group identity or community:

A book clubs, residents associations, cricket teams, mothers and todlers, gangs, Star Trek, even online artist forum such as this. All communities of some kind, with shared experiences. Everyone wants to belong and be part of some kind of group.

Is this what Identity means?

As an artist I have been constantly asked to foster identity, represent, give a voice to and strengthen communities.


A role I was reluctant to accept at first, having trained as an abstract painter I didnt think it should be artists who had to wallpaper over the cracks in society.

Now I see it as adding to the social fabric of our society. Something all art forms have always done anyway.

I was the outsider, so I climbed down from the ivory tower I had started to build and met people.