I work in two and three dimensions using drawing as my principal tool for research. To support myself financially, but also because it feeds the practice and keeps me sane I teach on the Foundation at Bath College and at Spike Print Studios Bristol.
Earlier this year I completed a-n’s Artist’s Development Toolkit which confirmed the following as issues with a negative impact on my development as an artist:
1) I moved away from the region where I did my MA and first established my practice. Now I am struggling to access ‘critical debate’.
2) Naturally comfortable in facilitating roles, I prioritise developing other people rather than myself, which is harder to do.
3) Currently I am not reaching a market for my work.
My work has been well received in Mainland Europe. It seemed logical to strengthen my relationships there: build a network, research exhibition opportunities perhaps and spend time collaborating with artist mentors.
Finally, I have an idea for a European print technicians’ exchange, which won’t go away. Underpinning activity in every print studio is the technician. I need to act on this idea preferably without taking on the administrative role. Discussion with technicians abroad might indicate an appropriate way forward.
Two years ago I went to Alkmaar to represent Bath Artist Printmakers at a six-week festival of print (GAA Drukmaken 2015) on a funded visit. The artists involved made work in public in a makeshift print studio set up in the town’s enormous deconsecrated church.
Prior to that I took part in a series of four projects involving artist from Kölner Graphik Werkstatt: Tiefschwarz DEEP BLACK (exhibition), which toured Serbia in 2010, two residencies hosting German artists based at The Bluecoat in Liverpool 2010 / 2011 and PenPal – an exhibition / collaboration in 2012. (The German connection was initially made by fabulous ongoing Liverpool-based project EightDaysAWeek.)
The PenPal exchange – I was paired with Jutta Vollmer – rang true, which left me pondering on our exchange in particular and collaboration per se. Jutta co-directs Kölner Graphik Werkstatt.