I thought I would use my time in Klaster to pursue some of the themes that interest me in a more experimental way than I would do back at home. When I am making work at in Liverpool I feel like the things I do need to be part of a bigger project or that I must deliver some kind of final artwork, but I feel less pressure when I am away to have a go with some bits and see what happens.
One of the general themes of my work is collage. I like to assemble different images to to make a composition that satisfies me. I like to incorporate nature and structure, patters, symbols and repeats. It comes from my interest in order and disorder. I like to depict landscapes because that is something a viewer can instantly connect with. Figurative painting is about creating an illusion. If l can bring people in with something they recognise, I can then add other things in that may be strange or abstract but the viewer will still attempt to make sense of it.
Around Nepomuk there are patterns and signs on the streets and buildings. It is the same in any town but there will be variations especially between different countries. Here are some of the patterns and signs that caught my eye in Nepomuk.
I used the polystyrene sheets to make printing blocks of some of the patterns and symbols.
I then tried incorporating them into mono print drawings of the landscape in Klaster. Here are the results.
I have been trying to paint pattern in my recent paintings and now I am debating whether to print the pattern instead. It doesn’t always work if you are using linear perspective, it depends how abstract you want the painting to be.
Here are some pictures of what Jayne has been doing.
There are all sorts of treasures in the house. Some belong to Barry because he collects and sells old things and some were here in the house already. Jayne used one of the empty rooms to make an exhibition of some of the things she found in the house.
Other than making some art, we have chatted with Barry about how he could develop the Klaster Studios project, learnt something about the Czech people and what it is like living in the Czech countryside, had bonfires in the garden, visited an empty fairytale castle in the next village, watched people swimming in the lake, learnt about St John of Nepomuk, drank mango rum and very cheap beer, talked about how Barry will arrange a performance of his opera in Liverpool had a BBQ on the fire with Klarka the little girl and her Mother Lenka, learned how to say cheers, hello and fish in Czech and I visited the Nemejc birthplace (Nemejc is a renowned Czech painter from Nepomuk) and Jayne got a lady with keys to let her climb up the church with a garlic bulb top and touch the bell. And the weather has been glorious!
We’re returning to Prague now for one night and hoping to see our artist friend Petra again.