I’ve emailed the wip:stkhlm and asked if they have any studios available from August. It would be great if they did. I feels really good to think that I’ll have a studio again, and August 1st is the second anniversary of my residency there. I like the roundness of it.
It feels like the right time to do it. I have about two and a half months to get things in place; this should be achievable. There is no reason why I can’t set up my studio even if I am technically still living in London. The idea of the financial commitment is a good incentive to work hard at finishing the DIY and getting the agents to look over my flat.
Not having a studio (and not finding a satisfactory way of working without one since installing Play at MOCA London last September) has made me realise that if I don’t make something happen then nothing/no-one will. I imagine it would different if I had a gallery asking for new work, but as most of my work is self initiated or comes about from talking about what I’m doing, when I stop it all stops! I need and want to be working again and for me that requires a physical space. It is exciting to think about loading up a van with my previous work and materials, taking the ferry to Sweden and driving up to Stockholm.
DIY and the skilled artisan …
Two things have recently made me think about how I do things. I bumped into another artist in the local supermarket and was talking about the work I’m doing on my flat. He asked if enjoy doing DIY or if it is a financial decision to do it myself. Then last night I went to Michael Petry’s presentation about his new book, The Art of Not Making, which looks at artists who work with artisans to produce their art works. So as I sit here surrounded by pots of paint, tubes of caulk, spare bamboo flooring complaining that I don’t have a studio I realise just how much I take on myself. If I had the money would get in professional decorators? Would I commission someone else to fabricate artworks? I know myself well enough to know that I like to be in control, though I am now wondering if this is an efficient way to be working – domestically and creatively. I could be sitting here seeing my flat transformed while I commission new art works.
The financial side of employing people interests me. I am not in a position to pay other people (to make art works or decorate the house) so I do it myself. I was also brought up and educated in a philosophy of DIY. Does working within my own abilities and budget limit my potential? I want to know how artist afford to have things made.
Just found out ferries no longer go to Sweden, I’d have to go to Denmark and then drive and drive and drive. Freight might be the answer.