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I am trying to break the economic exile I have found myself in, as an artist, unable to work for free, without funding.

Last year, in the midst of another economic crisis, I was offered the opportunity to participate in an experiment in the sleep lab at the University of Lincoln.

I was paid £50 worth of Amazon vouchers merely for sleeping in a laboratory and having my brain waves measured for two nights.

I wrote a blog about it at the time.

I have six tracks created from my sleeping brain waves, and am at the stage where this would form a sound art installation.

I’m researching How Art Made Pop, which details how UK art school graduates became pop and rock icons, which has provided me with a few ideas about how this might develop.


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Alongside my current exhibition and Kickstarter campaign, I was interested in visiting Yorkshire Sculpture Park to see the KAWS exhibition.

Fellow LAN artist Sam Bartlett and I discussed it, and he texted to suggest Sunday to go.

So, wading through the huge pile of Valentines Cards…. not, this was our first visit there. It’s a bit of a distance to get there, and would be impossible via train / bike, so it was nice to be offered a lift.

We were particularly impressed with Bill Viola’s Tristan and Isolde inspired video installation, and it was good to see BobandRoberta’s art manifesto opposite what appeared to be an abandoned research facility straight out of a Kate Bush video – here’s a link to some pics: http://helend-blackbird.blogspot.co.uk/2016/02/kaws-exhibit-at-ysp.html

I uploaded images of “Organon” to my Illustration blog here: http://helendearnleyillustration.blogspot.co.uk/2016/02/organon.html

I like to pretend I’m artist in residence there, building Cloudbusters all day long, but of course, the government have already destroyed my ability to conduct my research by way of the fact that I would not ever be able to travel there, realistically spend any time there either, never mind lack of funding.

An old school friend tells me this was where she did her teacher training, but it was closed down and moved to Leeds Met. I now understand the context of BobandRobertaSmith’s piece nearby, and next to the schools learning zone.

If any of you go to YSP, we missed the Bill Viola works in the Underground gallery, sadly, but you can imagine me in my Lab coat illustrating Cloudbusting with my colleague there.


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Cloudbusting, the exhibition, is still ongoing, and there’s also a Kickstarter campaign coinciding with this – you can find it here:  http://ow.ly/Y425u

Star twitterer Lisa Muggeridge, who was recently interviewed by The Artist Taxi Driver, has been kind enough to offer to retweet it every day!

This is the kind of support needed – if everyone on here did this, I won’t have to pay all the spammy PR people that message me on Kickstarter instead of actually pledging….


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