One of the things that I asked for as part of the talent development grant was to pay for a photographer to record me working, Nick Carter lives in the forest and is a great photographer it has been really interesting seeing myself through his eyes.
I’ve rearly enjoyed creating my creature at Furzey over the last month, he’s gradually come to life
I was really aware that we needed to put signage up so that visitors would know not to touch it.
I had an interesting day overwhelming in many ways, it’s hard to know where to start from there is no much visual stimulus the colours are amazing s.
The head gardener has shown me some willow, there is a limited resource and I’m loath to use too much but I need to start somewhere, and allow myself to just play and experiment”
I tend to work with dried willow as it shrinks so much so working with live willow brings its own challenges, it doesn’t hold its self so well together,
I decided to leave the leaves on for now and I’m just enjoying playing with shape and form there’s something really engaging about working with raw materials . as they’re even less predictable but that’s part of the challenge.
I thought that id make a little video I’m new to doing this but thought that it would be interesting to show you what I’ve been doing as photos don’t really capture it
I came back to start work all fresh today and found that my work was all over the floor it was firmly fixed and so the only thing that I can think is that a child played with it and accidentally pulled the work down.
It was very frustrating but after all, Furzey is a garden with visitors of all ages, this experience highlighted that I need to get a sign made asap to let visitors know that the things that I am creating work in the gardens. I think that the shape now looks quite a cocoon-like, but without a sign, there was no point in me rebuilding so I moved it into a safe area so that I could work on it again later.
The autumnal leaves are so beautiful and inspired me to create a new piece of work, as I started making a shape emerged and encourage me to create something that might bring a smile to visitors faces. It is not likely to last that long as wind, rain and overly zealous gardeners cutting the grass will all be a factor as to how long it is there but that is part of the joy of creating ephemeral art it doesn’t last very long
One of the things that I enjoy at the gardens is the conversations that I am having with the gardeners and volunteers
Lots of curious discussions happen for example when a dead owl was found what happened to its head, was it killed or was it found and then eaten?
Walking down towards the bottom of the gardens near to the bottom meadow I was asked if I had smelt the toffee I was told that it came from a tree, so I asked them to show me it the Katsura tree comes from Japan it smells like popcorn, toffee and on this autumn breeze is very special, I did wonder if there were a lot of them would the smell be much too overpowering
In the beginning
My first day working in the gardens ( 26th September )
I spent my first hours with furzy staff, meeting a few of the volunteers. There is something special about spaces such as this which is so tangible that you can feel it that entices people to stay and be part of it
A space for tranquillity, time to be part of something that is important and worthwhile.
Id already met with the head gardener who had said that he was happy for me to create different things around the garden, I knew that it would take me time to become familiar with the space so I decided to something simple, so much of creating new work for me is to allow myself time to play and just get into the creative experience so as I love the colours of the leaves especially the varying shades of reds and golds,
Creating simple swirls and circles, large petal shapes and mounds under one of the rhododendron.
I find such starkness enticing. as I was working for some young families with children walked past, curiosity got the better of them and they asked me what I was doing
We spoke about the pleasurable act of creating patterns with leaves and found materials, one of the ladies was particularly interested in what I was doing and asked me if I’ve made the colourful shape under the tree, she said that they’ve been trying to guess what it was, I encouraged them to do have a go themselves
I am really pleased to be able to share that I have been awarded a talent development grant from a space’ arts, the funds will enable me to work with a mentor and photographer to help me to record the experience. I will be creating new work as an Artist in Residence at the wonderful Furzey Gardens in the New Forest. I will be starting my time there at the end of September and creating work through the winter months.