I am very fortunate that my day begins with a meditative walk in the countryside around Sheffield. I have a growing interest in nature, the psychology of walking and the liminal spaces that enclose the city. Meditative walking involves keeping my mind open and instinctively following the thoughts and feelings evoked as I experience my surroundings. This subtle approach ensures every walk is unique irrespective of the route followed. I have found that the regular revisiting of a given pathway illuminates subtle nuances in light, colour, temperature, sound, moisture, smell and growth, as well as the often minute presence of animal and human traces. My senses are engaged by a combination of aspects that my subconscious is drawn to at that particular moment, freezing in time a moment with nature and unseen forces. It’s my firm belief that the daily ritual of meditative walking is of fundamental benefit to my physical and mental wellbeing. It seems logical to draw on this experience and use it to benefit my creative practice.
My challenge is to continue the autonomy of the walking experience into an autonomous making process. Steering the mindfulness, I am engaging with while walking, into my making process.
Woodland Works are a growing sequence of artefacts. There has been a natural instinctiveness to create vessel forms – capturing moments in time
These vessels suggest repositories for my walking, intuition, contemplation, journeying
this found, foundation piece
this instinct……this decision
The focus of each is the gathered natural material – tree bark. I consider this bark to be fragile and precious. To be treated with care, fortified and preserved. I have worked directly and relatively swiftly through to consummation. Subconsciously the first works have been placed on ‘pedestals. Perhaps reminiscent of the Chinese scholar’s rocks I’ve seen in Hong Kong.