Wednesday, 31 October 2012

It's leather time again

I have the pleasure of spending this week at Morley College as technician on the bronze casting course again. I am working with the brilliant Terry Jones and what he doesn't know about bronze can be written.......etc. Once again we have a great group of students producing some very fine work. Last time we ran it, we were pouring on the hottest day of the year, now with the autumnal cool, it's actually rather cosy having burners on for the wax and with the furnace on tomorrow we are unlikely to melt quite as much. I wrote last time with the heading ' today I am mostly wearing leather' which in my naivety didn't think would provoke the reaction it did as there have been more hits for that blog than for any other; I only hope that they weren't too disappointed. 

Thursday, 25 October 2012

and the winner is.....

Me - I won!! I am the recipient of the East West Award sculpture prize! I write this now so I can check in the morning that this really is true. I am sooooo chuffed and expect someone to tell me it is a mistake any minute. Many thanks to Mr Morito and all the staff and judges. 

Wednesday, 24 October 2012

No cars at all

The East West Award show looks stunning! A real mix of work from across the globe, amazing photos from Sweden, great paintings from Japan and my work in the middle of it all! Greeted at the door with a badge and offered a drink, definitely needed and as it turned out, absolutely essential as we were asked to speak about our work. I thought e were being gathered for a photo but then I realised we were being asked to say a few words, I was called out first. Actually with hindsight this was ideal, no time for nerves and I just had to get on with it.  I had some really good compliments and it was a fab evening with outstanding work, the award evening is tomorrow night, I am going for the fun of it. 
I have just returned from a great evening at the Royal British Society of Artists, the 2 recipients of the Brian Mercer Fellowships, Kate McLeod and Halima Cassell, gave excellent talks and I had a good catch up with chums. 

Sunday, 21 October 2012

The good the bad and the smelly

Good news, I delivered my sculpture Sny to La Galleria this morning, no hitches and all straight forward. By the looks of the other work being unwrapped it will be a stunning show and I am in very good company! 
Thankfully my sculpture was completely unaffected by the smelly car. I had collected some piping from my sister which I think I can use and I thought that we had managed to remove all the traces of dead squirrel that was on it but it appears that I was very much mistaken. When I put it back into the car for the final trek to the studio I realised just how wrong I was and drove the few miles down to Stratford with all the windows down, the sun roof open and my head hanging out of the window, my asthma pump at the ready. It wasn't raining all that hard and it was infinitely preferable to the stench. The puddles in the footwells should dry quite quickly. The lovely RAC who had to come out to change to tyre for me, one nut wouldn't budge, was very polite asking that the doors and the windows  were shut after he kindly lifted the old tyre into the back of the car, he did have tears running down his face and I don't think it was the exertion, I decided not to try and explain dead squirrels in case he called the RSPCA. Used car anyone?

Friday, 19 October 2012

I am delighted......

Have just had a letter from The Royal British Society of Sculptors informing me of an interview for the Brian Mercer bronze casting residency!! This is amazing opportunity to spend 3 months - three whole months - in Pietrasanta Italy. My maquettes often start life in paper and very often end up with a life of their own and I would love to work these paper sculptures into bronze.  The 2 below are about 90 cm wide and hefty; the paper almost ends up as wood again it is so thick. 

 I shall keep you posted, watch this space .......... 

Wednesday, 17 October 2012

a general update

Apologies for a lack of postings lately but being back at college has made life super busy. As usual though, I have landed on my feet with excellent students and all of them are making good progress. I teach sculpture mostly at the City Lit in the middle of London and a couple of other courses in the year at Morley College in Lambeth North. Both carving classes are full, the regular wood carving group on Tuesday evenings has lots of 'old hands' making ambitious work in all styles and they really keep me on my toes and there are a few new people dipping their toes for the first time.  The Saturday woodcarving group is mostly new people, again getting stuck in with interesting work. With students permission I shall post some photos soon. I love my new class at the Royal Hospital Chelsea with the red coated pensioners, lovely men with amazing stories (I was regaled with tales of Antarctic explorations yesterday)  working with paper right now but we start carving soon - a daunting prospect because the place is pristine. 
I really ought to set up some classes in my studio but it is so cold there in winter that I think students will end up with hypothermia. 
I have just been asked to teach a mystery course at City Lit in December, students sign up for a course but have no idea what they will be letting themselves in for! Brave souls. I promised not to tell anyone what it might be and I cannot be bribed........
I am, of course, still writing applications and right now I am in a bit of a tremble with the EWAA exhibition next week. I shall let you know how I get on, for the moment I am just really happy to have been selected. 

Thursday, 4 October 2012


I think I have to pinch myself that the AA2A scheme is real. I went this morning to meet the other artists - there are 4 of us altogether- and to look around the department. It is all brand new with masses of fabulous equipment, I am deliriously happy! My original project may well be somewhat expanded so watch this space. The department and the other artists are really friendly and I feel a highly productive year coming on.....
The other two artists are -: and

Wednesday, 3 October 2012

happy days in Chelmsford

I am delighted to accept the AA@A award ( from Chelmsford College! ( This scheme offers artists the opportunity to use the facilities in a college and a materials grant! Brilliant-I shall be making full use of the kiln. I am off tomorrow to have a look round and see what's what and I shall keep you posted.