St Ives 16.3

I don’t think my paintings are really about the place anymore. The paintings are about painting. I am using the form, dimension, architecture of the coast here as form, dimension and architecture in my painting. It feels strange. Maybe I have always been doing that, but it’s been under the guise of place-based making, relationship to place, relationship to land etc etc. That stuff just seems unimportant now. Like big sweeping statements that I no longer need. I think my work has become more specific now, more focused. Maturing perhaps. That’s exciting.

Today I started doing some little quick, gestural paintings. Using brighter colour and completely abstract marks. I did these paintings based on a the detailed cardboard diorama paintings. I’m not sure yet how the gestural expressive paintings tie into the cardboard diorama paintings. With I drop one? Will they be combined?

I guess the question to ask is: what am I trying to achieve with these paintings? I don’t know yet. I know I like that there’s humour involved. I like that I am modelling experiences I have had. Modelling. But the paintings so far haven’t been experiential, they’ve been separate entities in their own right. Sort of creepily mimicking something grand and totalising and bodily and spiritual. These paintings of models are aware of how they fall short, but maybe that’s the point. To model an experience, and talk about how memories are constructed.

How does memory come into this? I’ve been using photos and sketches and so my memory doesn’t feel taxed. It’s a theme that I am forgetting. Perhaps also because I am here in St Ives, sometimes only a few hundred metres from the place I am painting. Perhaps when I return to my studio in Manchester I will feel like memory plays into this more.

I have been feeling the urge to go big, to get those large canvases out. I don’t quite know what to put on them yet. I feel like my work here is picking up momentum. It’s getting stickier, rolling like a big, sticky, oily, colourful tumble-weed with lots of bits of things sticking out of it.

I am feeling so excited about continuing to work. I think I will go back and do some reading. I am feeling like I need to do some research rather than just painting some more.

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