My friend Andy Copps recently invited me to take part in a storytelling event in London, called Stories of Hope and Courage. I was asked to provide some live art to accompany the stories as they unfolded, and there was some live music in the mix too. We gathered to be entertained, and to support Donate4Refugees, a small charity which provides essential shelter, warmth, food and other critical daily needs of refugees and migrants in Europe. You can find out more about them here. I sat at the back of the room, I listened, and began to draw.
In the run up to the event I decided to frame my work around the enso symbol, a hand drawn circle symbolising a moment when the mind is free to let the body create. Given I had not heard the stories beforehand, this felt like a useful way to begin each art work. As the stories unfolded, I made an enso and added symbols within each enso to reflect aspects of the tales as they drifted by me on the air. Most of the ideas worked, one or two did not, and ended up in the bin 🙂 After the event I photographed the art works. Here they are in close up, and mounted and framed.
These original A4 signed art works (unmounted and unframed) are available to purchase at a cost of £25 each plus £5P&P. £10 from each sale will go to Donate4Refugees along with the donations of £105 which were raised on the night. If you’d like to purchase one or more of these works, you can do so via my PayPal page. Thanks in advance for your support.
A few weeks ago I wrote about the free art project extending into Europe. Since then, I’ve accepted a kind invitation to show some of my art at an exhibition in Minden, Germany.
Minden is one of the towns twinned with our borough, and next March there will be an arts festival to celebrate Minden’s 40th anniversary of town twinning. I’m choosing to show some works from my I Guardian series, which is an exploration of mental health and the human condition. Earlier today I sent off my submission to the exhibition catalogue. This is a first for me, and I can’t quite believe it’s happening. I’m excited and grateful, and a great reminder to me of the importance of some of what I learn through my free art project, namely:
Be curious. Start something. Keep going.
In case you are interested, here are the works I’ll be showing next March. I use the words ‘I’ll be showing’ quite intentionally, because I’ll be at the exhibition when it opens.
When I was a kid, I remember my Mum buying me a Spider Man comic while I was ill, and off school for a few days. For years after that I bought loads of different Marvel comics, and I always remembered that day I read my first one. Stan Lee, the creator of Sider Man and many more super heroes besides, died a few days ago, at the age of 95. I instinctively knew that the next free art drop needed to honour his work, in a way that meant something to me.
I’ve been working on a Spider Man tribute piece for a few days now, and it’s finally finished. I’ve titled it Lights Out, and deliberately left the eyes dark.
Here are a few pictures of the work in progress, including a piece of accidental art made when I laid one layer of stencil on top of a piece of my Elemental Art series.