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Week 7

So this is technically the first week of me picking back up my online Journal after a period of absence. Pesky migraines came back and between reading week and missing two classes in a row I’m here with very little progress. Hey its not all doom and gloom though !

It’s interesting to look at my failure of not working and why did it stem about. Was I busy in the time that I have neglected this project, yes of course I was ! I think this is a good time of reflection and seeing why I have pushed so hard with other projects and this one. With my photography it has been easy, simple the work just flows naturally. I am constantly chasing the process, each step I am using is something new. I have produced over 100 unique darkroom images in the last 3 weeks, framed hung and setup an exhibition. But it was all simple. Why ? I think perhaps this is the magic of the I.P project, it’s hard. Trying to get back into the project when you’ve lost momentum is near impossible you have to re-gather yourself and re-collect. You want to say something but what medium do you want to say it in ?! I think it’s something I’ve accepted I’ve struggled with. I think illness starts the collapse of my cycle of good work and then I really struggle to get back into it so I put it off and off until I get something.

Meeting with Richard Brooks

So I have some of my new found energy for this project thanks to Richard Brooks. Richard is an MA student at the school of art and met with me for an additional tutorial that had been recommended by Miranda. I didn’t know what to expect, anyway I bought my laptop with work to show and a selection of my photography work. Although most of my work is now on display so photos and scans of the work had to suffice.

The tutorial was fantastic and I have so much creative energy from it. In fact it rounded off a very good day ! The power of it was that we looked at my entire plethora of work we looked at my photography work and my I.P classwork including my past performances and projects swell as my new ones. Why do we not do this more in the SoA this is such a missed opportunity to get a whole picture of an individual ? We are so rooted in one practice…why ?

It’s hard to summarise what we talked about, partially because we talked about so much but also because it’s hard to summarise a good conversation which was full of energy and organic creative thought. To attempt though…

  • We talked about myself including my personal life and influences, talking about my history with bicycles.
  • My past 3 I.P projects, including Saltberg 2019, Subaquatic Sounds 2020, The Dependance on the Two Wheeled Home 2022
  • My photography work including light paintings and current fascination in alternative process
  • Why am I struggling with my current I.P project ?
  • My strengths in curatorial work and inclusion, my communication skills
  • The process is the art

This is just a few things that we discussed but I really felt that this session was productive. The most interesting things for me was someone communicating with me the importance of using your strengths and where to best put your energy as well as opening up and reminding me that art is not always about the final project that you create. It is hard for me to see the artistic outcome in I.P because there is no definitive outcome, in fact it just never ends. For example with photography, well eventually I get a final image, I can see the end, there is an end process. Many of my projects I have completed for I.P have just been surface level and have soo much more to give. They could go so much further.

We talked about how I liked my bike suspended from the ceiling in the project room and I wanted to progress further but now I don’t know what to do with it. Richard suggested to me that the object, in this case the bike was a barrier. The bike was not enabling my thoughts to come through. What did I want to say ? The bike was the barrier to me restarting the project. However the bike is also the catalyst for my project its something that is easy and natural. Richard I discussed how important it is for me to discuss my artwork with my friends and what I am doing with my project. I always have a people I talk to, in fact I will talk to most people who are willing to listen about my artwork. Richard asked if I ever documented my conversations with friends. I don’t think that I do but recently it is a tool I have used. My most recent talk with Aim I documented in my notebook for example.

Richard has inspired me to record more of my discussions or document them in some way. I think he is right it is so much part of my artistic process. Maybe materially I have done very little for a project in periods of time but I haven’t stopped thinking about in fact I think that my mind has been incredibly busy and I use conversation to develop my ideas.

I am feeling inspired to get back into the project room and suspending my bicycle from the ceiling and seeing what happens. I think it definitely involves audio and recording ! I also think it involves conversations now. Can I bring my friends into the project room ? Perhaps I could suspend my bike in the project room for a day and get people to comment and walk around it. Perhaps I could setup go pros. Maybe I could record conversations that I have with people about my bike. I need to consider what I want to discuss and what I want to get out of this mini project.

Richard gave me over an hour of his time which I can only thank him for.

1 thought on “Week 7”

  1. Thats brilliant to read and hear, i knew you two would hit it off, he is incredibly generous and a very experienced teacher, i am delighted it was such a success. So yes of course a conceptual project is always going to be harder to grasp, hold onto and pick up than a tangible material, medium based process, everyone struggles with it and it never ends! but the conceptual aspect of a project ultimately gives the most satisfaction, because it has mined into you, your thinking, who you are. The conversations around a bike reminds me of an artists work by Olaf Probst, he was resident artist with me in Margam Park Port Talbot, my first residency when leaving my degree, at 21! he set up a cluster of large rocks, i am not sure where they came from, he had them placed by heavy machinery on the top of the hill in the park, every day he invited people to come and have conversations with him in and around the rocks and then published extracts of these conversations in the daily newspaper, it was a beautiful durational project, simple, immediate and eloquent, it never left my mind. The book Conversation Pieces by Grant Hester is in the Library, this is full of dialogical art projects, some that have changed policy and peoples lives. Yes i think Richard has made an astute observation in seeing you as a collaborator, facilitator, instigator – of conversation.

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