There is something very appealing about the idea of having my own studio. I mean a studio that I do not share with someone. It would be great to have a creative space where I don’t have to think about anyone else’s access or activities. As I have mentioned before it is rare that Klas and I are at the studio at the same time, and when he popped in ’just to pick something up’ on Thursday we had a really enjoyable, interesting, and inspiring chat, so it’s not that there is a problem per se. It’s more a collection of small niggles that irritate me: having to pack up and cover everything before I leave just in case Klas does something dust producing before my return, having to make sure that a path though the space is clear so that both Klas and Ola can easily access the ’temporary’ electrical outlets, being aware of another artist’s work or evidence of their process – it is like some kind of mild but constant visual disturbance (I realise how ’precious’ that sounds)!
Sometimes I’d like to take a nap at the studio but I am too self conscious about someone, not just Klas or Ola but any of the artists at the studio wandering in and finding me asleep. It is this last realisation that makes me acutely aware that I am not fully myself in the studio – and that is not a good thing. I want a space where I can be fully myself and that, rightly or wrongly, is more than likely in a room of my own.
The question is how to achieve this room. One way would be to renegotiate how Klas and I share our space. Currently we have a shared ’clean’ space and a shared workshop or ’dirty’ space. Although I have used the dirty space in the past I spend most of my time on the clean side, Klas (as far I as I can see) does the opposite. Could we simply have a space each rather than sharing both? Ideally I would like to take over the dirty space: it is furtherest in and therefore no one would need access, I could make it entirely as I want. I would have to walk through Klas’ space and potentially drag a little saw dust into my studio (Klas primarily works in wood and has amassed a fair collection of woodwork tools and machines). Ola, who accesses his studio through our current clean space, might not be so keen to have a wood workshop adjoining his photo studio. I wish I could not worry about that but I do.
And so I find myself caught between wanted to speak with Klas about re-configuring the spaces that we currently share, and not wanting to make things difficult for another artist.
It would be lovely though to have the ability to open and close the studio door as I choose. I think that being able to do that would make a significant difference to my practice. It feels like a necessary step … it feels as though it would be beneficial.
Writing this I begin to wonder if there might be something symbolic about having a room of my own. Might it be a declaration to myself about my seriousness … an acknowledgement of my needs (be they rational or not)?
With the ’autumn term’ fast approaching it feels as though it is a good time to at least raise the question with Klas. As my grandmother used to say, though about something else entirely(!) “better out than in” – I shall get this idea of a room of my own out of my head and start by talking it through with Klas.