Shelf Lives : 1 week to go
This important solo show is a combination of drawing, painting, small sculpts combined with animated film and performance. It's a body of work I've been on for nearly three years. It launches on the Big Night at the Tower on Sat 23 May 7.00 - 9.30pm at Jaywick Martello Tower, Belsize Ave. Essex CO15 2LF on the East Coast UK. I hope to welcome you there.
I'm also doing an open access family event called Bring a Thing day, on Sunday 24 May at the tower. It's loosely based on the Antiques Roadshow, and is interested in personal memorabilia and keepsakes.
When my dad died in 2003 he left three suitcases stuffed with personal odds and sods. I didn't go near them for months. But there they were, waiting : Tiny pocket diaries from 1936 - 1947, with the middle five years mostly empty. Wads of paper, medals, postcards. The maintenance logs for the 3 tonner he drove with his unit in 2nd. Company 8 Army Signals. Posters his ENSA concerts on the way up Italy to Monte Cassino. Shots of his mates all looking hard as nails in the Tunisian desert. Signed photos of gorgeous but unspecified Italian girls. It made me cry because there was a young man reaching out of all that stuff. I could almost feel the electric charge of memory in some of the objects when I picked them up.
That was a trigger for this work. If you want three words to get you started for your journey through this show, here they are :
Memory Story History
This show is definitely not about my dad, or my memories of him. This body of work is my attempt to make work that you can use as an emotional battery. It's about how some objects somehow keep the touch of the people who lived with them. They are storage devices, or emotional batteries.
In a way that's always been an artists work, to make pictures and objects that attract and store and give back an emotional charge. Rembrandt's drawings of Saskia, Frances Bacons paintings of George Dyer, Joseph Cornell's boxes of found objects. It's always been the artists job to make analogue backups of the world they lived through and it's out job as viewers to give them a recharge every time we look at them.