sculptures of my imagination

Family Tree

These are the sculptures of my imagination, set free by Catalonia. They are not held down by gravity or by practicalities, they have the freedom to float, to roam. As Miro once said “I am neither a printmaker or a painter but someone who tries to express himself with all the available means”
There were other cities on our list, Barcelona was not really on our radar, but the studio came up ( as Spike, then Sculpture Shed did in Bristol 20 years ago while I was in Winchester ) and it seemed like a good bet. Rome and New York, very different cities, will have to wait. While I couldn’t possibly know, I had a feeling that I knew what I would do in Rome and New York but didn’t know about Barcelona and Catalonia and had a hunch there was something in it for me. 
The predominant artists here that I have seen are arrogant. 
I am like a timid mouse. 
If I was strong and colourful and playful as them I may be more equal and see their frailties, their insecurities.  I do respect them, think them brave, confident and hardworking and love them for their daring. Daring to just do anything. I don’t think Rome would have shown me this freedom, this crazy arrogance to do anything. 
the boys….MiroTapiesPicasso
and me…..




JJ Cale

Since cambridge and my attempt at a foundation course, since ploughing the fields as a summer job in hampshire; there has been one constant man in my life. A calming influence that glides over the ruts in the road, slides through the days turning them silky warm and sunny.

Went back to him today after my turbulent days of painting, back to JJ Cale* and I also returned to my clay. Maybe yes, out of cowardice but also to enjoy life.

as the man says

aint no shame in tryingaint no use denyingeverything will be alright

I am adrift when I am painting; in Barcelona I am just too much adrift already. I am bobbing about and I want to enjoy it. Take away home, friends, family and language and then change my work as well is maybe too far from the shore for me to feel ok.

With my sculpture my raft is large, I can enjoy the turbulence, lie back in the sun and feel the movement beneath, not care if I go into deep water, just think its funny and exciting.

So bye bye to the rotten vegetable shop ( we keep missing the market ) with the flies, bye bye dark peaches and wriggly peppers, I am gong back to the flying girls of my imagination.

It could be lack of cojones but I am not worried, I will try again later, just thinking of it makes me feel light again. I had put so much pressure on myself to be Rembrandt in a few days and I only had this chance here to do it, now, it was wearing me out. Like Chesil beach with its slippery pebbles, weighed down by heavy diving gear, in shallow water so the weights weren’t carried by the free deep sea, crawling on all fours trying to extract myself from the cold foggy water as each wave pulled me back under. Half drowning in shallow water. Quite the beach babe I seem to remember.

I send Graham a link on spotify of a ‘sensitive kind‘  as a way of an apology for being such a nightmare these past few days. He said we knew it was coming, the transition from holiday to living, the come down from the excitement of all the work to get here and getting here, the moving to the bedsit in the dark streets from the lovely apartment with the sunny terrace of opera.

But I am going back to holiday, to being a tourist, to seeing the world in it’s best shiniest light. I remember thinking this living in London part time, I think its the best way to see things, just remain a tourist so you remember to enjoy things, see them for the first time. Do the nice things as well as the work. I am going back to being a guiri* and to bobbing around on my big raft of sculpture.

Think this is pretty much finished now after leaving it a while, I couldn’t decide about the hands before wether they should be flat on her legs like the swimmer sculptures ( it sort of makes them point forward more ) but I like the idea of the hands making her look like an insect more. I also couldn’t decide wether to fill her wings in, I have wanted to do fragment sculptures for ages so this is a part way to that I guess ( and I can always fill them in later in wax ) and I like the idea that

she has put on her wings and her flying hat but it is futile,
she cant fly.

( if thats too sad I can fill them in )

she can fly in her head?!

John Terry‘s comments

I love your ‘bug’, poor girl with great holes in her wings -but she will fly despite or because of them – it’s how we use our faults that defines us. No room for ego – which is a lead balloon.

* not what he looks like mind, just his voice and his music!

* ironically a teenager shouted guirri at me as I cycled along on the way home, I was completely fully dressed, I am not burnt, I was not wearing flipflops, I was not looking at a map on a street corner, I was not lost! Maybe the little cow bag was just reminding me of my place here!

apologies for the cheesy water analogy, it must be the sea getting in, its a bit much this time but I cant help it!

A Pepper Painter

Tuesdays pepper drifts into Wednesday’s and Thursday’s. Never before have I sat for three days and looked at a pepper changing colour.

Maybe this is the life of a painter.

Am I now a proper painter by painting a pepper?Maybe it’s time to go home! I got so unbelievably lost getting to work today on my bicycle, saw plenty of Barcelona, think I will go the normal way home tonight, down Diagonal ( er der I mean Parallel ( no wonder I keep getting lost )) and to the sea. The sun is shining for the first time for three days and we are going to the theater tonight and correctomundo to my own blurb I will enjoy the sunshine after the rain and the not working after the work!