Perhaps because I do not have my own home my studio has had a very significant role in my life since moving to Sweden. It is not only where I come to work, but also a sanctuary when I need somewhere simply to be. The room is full of things that used to be in my flat in London as well as things from my studio there and of course materials, artworks and ‘bits’ that I have acquired over the last three and a half years. I think that this quirky five-sided room is one of the best studios in the complex – it has been a place of contemplation, production, refuge, and relaxation – and now I am going to start the process of leaving!
I have bought a flat outside of Stockholm and commuting to the studio is neither financially nor logistically viable. It is a big move for me, one that I am sure will be rewarding but at the same time one which is rather scary. Moving out of Stockholm enables me to have my own home with a very reasonable monthly service charge, and until I have a more regular or easily demonstrable income it makes really good sense. So sometime in June, hopefully, I will be moving to Enköping – a 40-minute train ride north of the city. Initially I intend to use the bedroom in the new flat as a studio, then once I am a bit more settled (and earning something) I will look for a studio close to home.
A friend of mine proclaimed 2015 to be ‘Year of Change’ when we met up between Christmas and New Year. He was right! Another friend, quite independently, said that it takes at least three years before one feels at home in another country. She was right too! Despite being tempted to apply for further courses I have decided that when I finish at Mejan this summer I will concentrate on my own practice and securing some income. Living on my own and within my means will give me space to do this. It is incredibly exciting and feels as though I am entering a new phase. Concluding my recent studies exactly 25 years after graduating from Dartington has a comforting sense of completion about it. Might I finally be ready for really engaging with the professional grown-up world?
It is Stockholm Art Week and later this afternoon I will go to Supermarket – the artist-led art fair. Tomorrow I will go to Market – the commercial fair and make a trip around the commercial galleries around Hudiksvallsgatan. Part of me would like to identify some galleries to show my work to, and part of me is scared of hearing that no-one is interested. I do not think that my work is un-commercial, especially not the most recent glitter pieces, but I am not good at selling either it or myself. Perhaps this attitude might too be due for change!