It’s strange how, when you do art, looking at it complete maybe a couple of months after or even years. It can take you back to that very moment you were creating it. I find artists mention this to me, and it’s true! I can sometimes remember what I was thinking, wearing, or listening to when I look at a particular area of my paintings.
This black and white pattern I have carried around with me since my university days. It’s amazing I still have it, as I have moved around a lot since then. To think it’s probably twenty years old and lived in 30 odd homes. I remember one move I did, I was in a rush, possibly getting a lift and help from someone, and I just left a pile of art under the bed.
I couldn’t open the draw, and it was me either moving without it or breaking the draw open. I couldn’t afford to be fixing draws and just left it all! Crazy, thinking back now, as I’m sure, I could have arranged to come back and get the stuff another time. I was struggling with anxiety at the time, and anyway, this was a stupid move.
The pattern was for a plan I had thought up, to cover an entire wall, table, chair and floor with the same design. I needed a pattern; I could put into a photocopier, to help keep the costs down. It also needed to be a design that would work well when repeated.
The pattern came to me very quickly, as the dancing figure was something I drew all the time – almost like a ‘tag’. The rest of the artwork was inspired by Keith Harring, Gustav Klimpt and tribe African masks made in wood.
I can remember thinking. I shouldn’t be doing style as the animation type figure was like the other work I had produced at college and school. An artist, when in education, was taught to create large bodies of artwork that was the same in style and subject.
I think this was when I decided; I disagreed with that whole process of education as it was more concerned with giving that person a career at the end of it, rather than real learning, where you explore your thoughts and form opinions. I was very young at the time and perhaps a bit idealistic! I disagreed with what the art world was telling me. I promised myself I would experiment and evolve as an artist – always!