Painting has recently been something I have done as a starting point and a way of playing around with material without the worry of- “where is this work going?”. Using my hands only, I mix and apply the paint with one hand, but use the other hand to explore my body, to assess how feels from the inside, out so I can theoretically transfer that onto paper. I have always had to have a direct connection with the material as well as my own body when I’m painting, as it feels so much more personal.
However, after being on my art residency in Spain for two weeks now, I have realised that I have changed the way I feel about my paintings. My environment has drastically changed, as I am now surrounded by nature rather than the city of Liverpool- a drastic change in my mind. These quiet, tranquil surroundings have enabled me to reflect on myself, my feelings, my current state.
When I eventually sat on the blank surface of my Fabriano paper, I decided that I no longer wanted to use bright, loud colours. The reality is- I don’t feel bright and loud. This experience has allowed me to channel this honesty into my work, and although my newest painting looks very different in terms of its colours and subtleness on the surface, its composition and style was strikingly similar to my other works. This confirmed what I hoped: the issue I had with my paintings was the colour. Ironically, colour is the element of my paintings that requires my honesty in assessing my internal state, which is the main point of me making the paintings. Although it was painful to admit that I’m not ok, I am so relieved my paintings now finally reflect this.
Photo 1: The first body map I made on my Joya residency at the beginning of week one. Photograph courtesy of the artist.
Photo 2: The second body map I made on my Joya residency at the end of week two. Photograph courtesy of the artist.
Photo 3: The two works side by side. Photograph courtesy of the artist.