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I see geometry everywhere. Work by an African artist in our Jerwood Gallery uses circles and lines to make trees. Reminds me of Mondrian. I continue playing with compasses and circles/stars/pentagons. Painting them with local soils ground up with my secondhand pestle and mortar. But I find no opening out.

Monday 11 May

In Rock House.
Soil is made from crumbled rock, the earth is alive, the living skin of the earth, all life depends on fertile soil – what lives in the soil? earthworms, millipedes, beetles, snails, slugs, ant, moles, woodlice. Microbes/bacteria – cells – what do they look like?

Insects: in sections, three sections, three pairs of legs. I draw a cockchafer. An insect a day….

What is the soil made of: silica, alumina, potash, magnesia – algae, funghi. Rich soil, hungry soil.

I look in ‘Soils and Fertilisers’ by A.J. Macself 1943. “Mother earth is very wonderful and responsive; generous without compare to those who lend their time, their interest, their labour; safer than banks to yield liberal interest upon judicious investments; greatest of all producers both of the necessities and joys of life.” Interesting.