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.

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I’m starting the last of the ‘big jobs’ on my flat. Over the last two months I’ve allowed myself to be totally consumed by decorating and other DIY. Having said that I went to a wonderful talk by Dorothy Cross at Frith Street Gallery the other week. I’ve known Dorothy’s work since a friend (and former tutor) took me to a show at the old Frith Street Gallery back in the 90s. She is a fascinating artist and a great speaker (talker?). It was really good to hear how she works, especially how her focus and projects have developed over the years. I left feeling inspired and encouraged.

I’m desperate to get back to the studio – well, to get a studio! I know that everything I do is a step nearer to establishing myself in Stockholm and taking a studio there. I don’t know exactly what I want to do in the studio I just know that I need to be there.

A local print workshop runs short courses in screen-printing and I’m thinking of doing one. Some friends did a course there and listening to them made me think about what I could do. I’m intrigued by the idea of working on paper and by making something that could (potentially) be commercial. I say that because my friends are selling and have sold the prints they made … my work has never been commercial so why would prints be any different?!