Why do I find so hard to concentrate on one thing, or even a few things, without succumbing to distractions?
I've set myself a few small projects and deadlines, and yet before I've even started these I find myself hunting through the opportunities listings of half a dozen art websites. The really dumb thing is that the tasks I've set are mainly focussed on getting existing work documented and available in a range of media formats so that I can make better applications.
So, what's so hard about sticking to my strategy? I wish I knew, that way I could do something about it.
Projects & tasks:
• plasterboard one wall of the studio
• order materials to complete unfinished work
• photograph pieces I’ve made in the last two years
• learn to use the slide scanner I’ve been given
• make a model gallery for photographing macquettes
• make macquettes of large sculptures
• settle outstanding Crystal Palace Artists business
• write ‘Bed for …’ proposal
One new and important task is to get in touch with the curators Michael introduced me to in Norway. I've been thinking a lot about the exhibition space they programme – it's very interesting. It’s in a former railway station and has some curious restrictions imposed by the owners (the Norwegian rail company), such as not damaging or covering the 1970s wallpaper. The trains still stop at the station but now tickets are bought on-board and the station building was redundant. It would be hard to think of a gallery with better transport connections.
And now I’ve seen another exhibition opportunity listed here. Right I really need get on with getting some good images …
Norway was fantastic – in so many ways. It was exactly what I needed (without even knowing that I needed it). Michael Petry’s project is quite something – a beautiful site-specific installation that includes contributions from 100 international artists and writers. The project’s sophistication is manifest through characteristically honed research and attention to detail. It is a wonderful piece and I am delighted to be involved. The accompanying catalogue will be online shortly.
I thought I was simply going to an opening, and to be honest after a somewhat stressful week of trying to deal with Lambeth Housing, I was looking forward to spending time away and alone. What I found however was a truly welcoming group of artists and a really packed 48 hours. And not only artists, Michael’s mother Alicia and uncle Juan Roberto had travelled from El Paso and Dallas respectively to be there. From the moment Michael asked me to help prepare limejuice in his hotel bathroom I knew the weekend was going to be considerably more involved than I’d imagined. (Michael was making Margaritas for everyone in the suite that two other artists – Julia and Ken – had been upgraded to.)
Golden Rain is in one of the six decommissioned lighthouses being used for the On the Edge, Stavanger 2008 cultural programme that runs until the end of the year. On Sunday five of us artists got the train to Egersund where Michael and Morton (the man who maintains the lighthouse and it’s surrounding landscape) took us out to the bay where we got the boat across to the lighthouse.
This southern region is quite flat for Norway and we were lucky that the weather was clear and sunny. We were invited to see the installation before the official opening. In my mind I’d imagined that lighthouses are simply a very tall tower with a narrow staircase going round and round a central empty space. Of course they’re not like that, they have floors and some of those even have small rooms, there are the engines that drove the lamp lenses around and there are the gauges and checks for ensuring absolute regularity. The hundred golden raindrops appeared to be 'paused' as they descended the tower – showers of them are caught between the floors, caught in the lamp-keepers room, caught bouncing off the furnaces.
The official opening included speeches, welcomes, readings, thank yous, flowers, gifts and a solo trumpeter playing something I assume to be either locally or nationally recognised. On that day alone it was estimated that over 400 people came to the show. Everyone who comes is invited to make their own message in a bottle, and these will be later released in to the Gulf Stream with an invitation for the person who finds one to send an email with details of where and when it was found …