Small yellow winged birds flit from rock to rock. Morning walkers in bobble hats and boots. Puddles. Up the path to the stubbled field. Blooming gorse for a birthday. Muddied footprints, washing lines and sheds.
This is the start for my new line of walking and drawing and talking through the village.
My hand draws lines on paper,
journeying along the roadside of charcoal, graphite, ink,
dark nights and early morning fog.
I will go anywhere with you,
scouring a groove of a breath,
Cold morning, very cold.
Layers of clothing later I head out along the High Street and meet Gordon the street cleaner. His travels have taken him to John O’ Groats where he saw the MV Bettina wrecked on the rocks below. His uncle, a seaman from Anstruther circumnavigated the globe in 1961.He heads east and I west out of the village .
Marram grass, Sanday, Orkney.
A machair of wildflowers – orchids, birdsfoot trefoil, grass of Parnassus, eyebright, thrift and scurvy grass set against the enormity of the wide northern skies. On the far side of the bay some German duck shooters had once bought the farmhouse installing gold taps and a very large telescope. They had to sell to pay a debt owed for wrecking Ernie Groundwaters pleasure cruiser.
Intro for exhibition next weekend –
This exhibition represents work made this year in locations that span the Scilly Isles to the Orkney Isles. My parents live at opposite ends of the country, on islands that couldn’t be more different, and yet, the stories that are made and told are not so different. It is the stories of people and place and my subsequent re-telling that is important to me as an artist. Without stories and the things that we keep to represent those accounts, it seems we have little. And so, the telling of who we are and who we have been gives us our framework, our narrative, a line we can walk being careful not to drop things on the way. But, sometimes if we do, others might find bits of us in the most unexpected places and re-imagine a different line. Finding the bits of people in the landscape (including myself) is my job and returning them as something new is what I do.
Spent the morning walking along the coast, waiting for the wind to come. The day has a dark, sad feel and it reflects my thoughts.
Detail from ‘The wedding gift’, mixed media on canvas 5ftx5ft. My grandparents were given a set of six silver spoons and forks as a wedding gift. My mum and dad sold five of the pairs to pay for her wedding ring. This is the only pair that remain.