I took a road trip way out East last week to deliver some sculptures to the Lettering Arts Centre at Snape Maltings near the Suffolk coast. The Lettering Arts Centre is run by the Lettering and Commemorative Arts Trust which also operates Memorials by Artists. It’s a bit of a trek to get over there from Bath but I wanted to see the space and meet the staff who I have exchanged emails and telephone conversations with. It’s nice to put faces to names. I put a couple of word sculptures in for their Christmas showcase exhibition which opened on Friday and runs until 22nd November. Us and Q are carved from some off-cuts of Hartham Park Bathstone I had lying around the workshop for many years, and continue my interest in words as sculpture.
I had a lovely lunch with Harriet Frazer who founded Memorials by Artists and who is one of the key people to have shaped my career as a lettering artist. She recently retired from running MbA after 27 years. There is a good article telling her story here.
Afterwards I made my way to the sea at Aldburgh, and sat on the shingle beach as the last light faded.
Aldeburgh beach in the falling dark
I spent the night in Cambridge and had a little wander round the next day before I went to visit a cycling friend from the Amos Roadclub, Kip Gresham, who runs The Print Studio. Kip works with all sorts of artists, some with international reputations, on their print making projects. The studio is a wonderful clean and well ordered space. It made me want to do some printmaking.
Then back home, enjoying the charms of the M4 along the way.
There is still time to see this exhibition which I have contributed to at the Street Road Project Space, USA, which closes on the 31st October. I worked on a project earlier in the year with the Japanese artist Kaori Homma called the Meridian Stone Project, which is being shown as part of “Sailing Stones”.
Kaori Says about the project:
“This project is an extension of Homma Meridian Projects an ongoing work which re-sites the Greenwich Prime Meridian in different locations around the globe, invoking the power-centered nature of demarcated boundaries and space. Homma’s Meridian Stone Project is an ongoing collaborative work: a stone taken from Street Road, and carved with the longitudinal coordinates 0º0’0’’ is mailed from artist to artist.
The result of artists’ contemplation will be seen as an installation as a part of inaugural exhibition at the Annex Barn at Street Road Project Space, USA.”
The Meridian Stones have traveled to Korea, Japan, Taiwan, Hungary, Ivory Coast, UK, USA, Taiwan and New Zealand, and are still going to places handed from artists to artists around the world.
To find out more check out:
My contribution was to carve the longitude coordinates 0º 0’ 0’’on the stone and to take a photograph and write a text to accompany my image.
I was thinking about scale and placement. Where is this stone’s prime meridian? What are the right coordinates for these zero’s? How big should their footprint be? I was thinking about ellipses within ellipses, and figure/ground relationships, and little upside down right angled triangles connecting time and space. I was thinking about the clockwise and counter clockwise orbits of 3 mm of sharp tungsten. The rhythm of hammer on chisel. Breathing and being precise. I was thinking about hours, minutes and seconds. Not thinking about the time but remembering to count it. Carving time from my other deadline.
I have three pieces in a really beautiful exhibition at Glastonbury Abbey running from now until the 28th September. You can see Journey stones, Us and Q, along with sculpture by 28 other artists scattered throughout the orchard, amongst tall grasses, wild flowers, mown paths and resplendent apple trees. The ruined Abbey is spectacular too.
Happy new year! I have uploaded a bunch of images from last years projects on to my Flickr site as a kind of visual review of the year. You can see them here.After a slow start it turned out to be a good year. No major commissions this year but plenty of satisfying smaller projects. A big thank you to all my clients for their commissions. Without them the show wouldn’t still be on the road! There were opportunities to make sculpture too. Most notably finishing “Journey Stones” for the Fresh Air exhibition at Quennington in the Cotswolds, and carving a couple of very 3D word sculptures for the Bath Society of Artists Annual Exhibition. Perhaps the best highlight was taking part in the Festival of Stone at the harbour front in Bristol in June. A really well organised event. It was great to be surrounded by people who talked “stone language”.
Carving “Kainos” at the Ferstival of Stone
Bath Society of Artists exhibition at BRLSI, in Bath
I am currently envigilating at the Bath Society of Artists members exhibition I at BRSLI in Queens Square in Bath. The show is open until Saturday, 10 ’till 4. So if your Bat call in and have a look. I am showing a piece called Transmutation – a word sculpture about bread and stone.
I have got a piece of work in the Fresh Air 2013 sculpture show at Quennington near Cirencester. The exhibition opened on Saturday and we were there for the opening. It is a huge show of contemporary sculpture in the open air. 140 + works in the beautiful setting of the gardens of the Old Rectory. It is incredibly diverse with work in a wild variety of materials including wood, steel, glass, ceramic and bronze. The emphasis is firmly on a contemporary approach to making, and I choose the word making carefully, as engagement with materials and crafting objects is central. It is a lively, colourful and eclectic show characterised by well crafted sculpture. If you live in the South West and you can get there go see it. Its open “till 7th July. The website is here and the flyer is below. I will blog a bit more about the show after we’ve had another chance to visit, and I will talk about my sculpture in due course!
I am in this exhibition in London which opens on Thursday. We all spilled out of art college 25 years ago wondering what to do next. We all found our way in the end and 25 years on, 11 of us are exhibiting together. It is amazing to me that enough of us from the same year group are still creating. I don’t know if that is unusual? It’s going to be quite a nostalgia trip and a great opportunity to catch up with old friends, some of whom I haven’t seen since we left. Here is the gallery. and the Corsham Re-formed blog. So if your anywhere near E17 call in and see the show.
I am going to be exhibiting in Bath at Walcot chapel in half term, with Richard Crooks, Guy Thomas and Barbara Cheyney. More details on this to follow shortly.