Work from an ongoing investigation into the possibilities of river mud as a basis for texture that I've been exploring since 2000. The nature of the texture created by the river organisms is of special interest. It combines a primal substance with a thrilling randomness of outcome, nothing is premeditated, all is possible.
I began experimenting with mud initially when I was invited to take part in a project Valley of Vision: Samuel Palmer & the Ancients Revisted. Funded by Kent County Council and SouthEast Arts, four contemporary artists were commissioned to take the works of Palmer as their starting point and create something entirely new.
The works Arcane Lustre 1 - 6 (2001) were my response as was the video 'Fish Soup' where I recorded the activity of the aquatic organisms in the mud.
2015 ZOO DES REFUSÉS
A series of works for the exhibition ONCE UPON TIME IN HASTINGS.
The works were developed around the idea of animals used for display in the historically recorded zoo on Hastings Pier (disbanded in 1974/5). However those depicted are the animals that escaped that terrible incarceration and the imagined scenarios of joy that followed.
The title is a nod to the exhibitions that showed rejected art works, Salon Des Refusés, most famously in 1863
2009 - 2014 STAIN & TRACES:
The river-mud was collected and initially thrown onto paper in 2009.
1 - 5 were completed with collage in 2014
76 x 56cm
....his Mother's forehead
......after the long, hard winter
......in the south-easter, free from everyday constraints and open to adventure
River mud from the Darent River was poured over paper. When dry, hot wax was applied to fuse the mud to the paper. The narrative is suggested by the traces and tracks made by the random movement of organisms in the mud. This is then developed further with paint and collage.
76 x 56cm