One good thing about being in the gallery with the exhibition – with or without visitors – is that it gives me the opportunity to live with this body of work for a while. I can consider the things that have gone well and those which haven’t. I can think about which direction to go in next.

The things I particularly like are the works which sit on the dark grey wall. Particularly during the days when the sun streams through the skylights, the texture of the paper seems more sumptuous somehow, and the way the ink sediment sits on it and sinks into it is highlighted beautifully. I like the swathe of muslin, hanging from the apex of the skylight, as it gathers the light and brings it down into the space, glowing.

I think I’d have preferred the other wall to be dark grey too, but some things cannot be controlled, so we do different things, it offers a different range of possibilities, and I have painted lines and words on the wall instead… carrying the lines beyond the edge of the page.

I wrote/painted some lyrics on the stairwell wall… I think I should have taken more time and prepared the surface a little first. But it’s done, and I know for next time.

What I am really loving though is the listening. This is how it was supposed to be. The links visual and aural between the lines of ink and the lines of music and lyrics are definitely there. I think yesterday’s event helped fix that for me too. It was a bit of a risk, I’d not done this before… Bill Laybourne and I had had a day drawing and making sounds, but to do this in the gallery with a live audience was very interesting. I think it took about 30/35 minutes, but there were times i zoned out and just drew, unaware of audience, and times when very aware of them, when a sound made me laugh and they laughed too… connection… Bill playing… and making me giggle. It felt appropriate, because I like to find laughter in amongst all this. Too serious is not good, it makes me think that people will think I take myself too seriously, that pompous thing is a real turn off!

There are moments in the music too, that have a little bit of the ridiculous, and I love those! This song, Undertaker Bees, is a good example of that underlining of the serious with the ridiculous and I love it (thanks Mike).

As I have sat here, I feel this work is a true reflection of who I am as an artist. Can’t ask for much more than that can I?


Michael Clarke, Elena Thomas, photo by Nikki Cooper
Elena Thomas and Bill Laybourne photo by Nikki Cooper

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s