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April and May(hem) 2010

22 May 2010


It’s me again, with a short report from the furnace of my studio.   Bless the sunshine ey? I’m typing away in the intense heat of this beautiful May day.  My computer is in the attic and so is the hot air. My lazy adult cats, who are no fools, are like mini African lions;  languidly stretched out in sunbeams, while I work.

Downstairs, the kittens are growing up fast and this very week, have discovered wasps.  This is unfortunate at the best of times but a whole nest has been discovered just outside of the front door.  The weekend mission is its removal. I suspect this task may end in tears and I'm wondering if I should borrow a wet suit for the occasion.

As you may know, I like to do short reviews of local art exhibitions.  I recently attended a preview by LA artist, Fabien Perez, in Newcastle.  I would love to be able to tell you about the show, but I didn’t really look at it (sorry, Mr Perez) "It's ok if you like that sort of thing", is all I'm prepared to submit.  Far more interesting were the other visitors, including a very pleasant lady who, for a living, tattoos nipples onto patients who have undergone mastectomy.  Now there is someone who will never be short of a conversation starter at dinner parties.
I am considering having my eyebrows done (not as nipples…as eyebrows) but not sure if I’m brave enough. On balance, I’ll probably just stick with an eye pencil.   As the evening wore on, my glass was charged a little too often by the attentive staff.  It is my opinion therefore, that have themselves to blame for the ensuing theft of the gallery tea towels (nice stripey ones) luckily, a close friend of mine manages this gallery and she isn’t pressing charges - this time.

I am painting when I can, but this month I have been very busy on other projects, including new work to design and refurbish three dementia wards in Bradford teaching hospitals.  It is a huge task because the scheme is funded mainly by charity with only a tiny amount from the NHS, and so, what we lack in funds, we must try and make up for in creativity.

Until I came face to face with my mother's dementia, I never understood the true extent of its cruelty. It is because of our experience with this disease that I feel compelled to offer what little help I can. Sadly, it feels like a drop in the ocean of what is really needed for sufferers,  but hopefully as a team,  we can get a positive result for the hospital patients of Bradford.

In the meantime, if I survive the predicted wasp attacks,  I will return shortly with news of gallery events taking place in July.

Until then, have a lovely end of May and Bank holiday.