Who are you? What do you do?
I graduated from The Glasgow School of Art last year and now I’m just living here. I make drawings using biro. I am endlessly fascinated by interactions between human beings. It has always been important to me to understand every side of someone’s story. I like observing the way in which we communicate or hold back what is important for us to express according to our upbringing or differing generations.
Where are you from?
I would say the loft of a barn in a small village called Marshfield before anywhere else. In the southwest of the UK where most of the time I looked out a Velux window to the sky and lived in an imaginary world.
Your style in 3 words?
Blue, Reflective, Violent
Your weakness? Your strength?
Being passive as hell to showing my emotions. Being emotional.
What makes you different?
I only use biro…everything else overwhelms me. This limit helps me focus on what I want to draw. I’ve been known to actually make sculptures with actual egg yolk..that’s how influenced I can be by a material. I found the sculptures in the cupboard the other day half mouse eaten..thank god.
When did you decide to become an artist?
I don’t think I ever really made the decision. Making work is just something that is necessary for me to do in order to think clearly. It slows down and grounds my thoughts. Reflecting my own judgements or observations allows me to reconsider them.
What do you find most fascinating about your work?
I never usually like what I’m drawing as it’s often a moment that distresses me. It is later that I come to like it realising why it moved me. In my agitation to get down an atmosphere, the composition is often warped and not totally balanced – but neither is the atmosphere I usually want to describe. There are tensions and conversations trying to be had but not always resolved. My process is also very related to my body and I see it as a kind of dance. Having asthma somewhat represses my words before they reach my mouth and drawing allows me to have access outside my lungs.
A few words about your favourite creation?
There is a drawing I made called ‘Cross Words’ of some people sitting around a table doing a cross word. This moment was a big reflection of why I find their conversations frustrating, talking which lacks communication. They use a crossword as a source of language and avoid personal matters of the heart. Compositionally, words cross the space in between them but don’t touch each other emotionally. They maintain this indirect and minimal sense of closeness. I feel a deep sadness squashed under this weight of repression.
Someone else’s work that inspired or inspires you…
Stanley Spencer’s arms, legs and hands. His paintings are full of varying characters getting up to all sorts; disproportionate limbs all moving about through the chaos of everyday life. He captures the quirks of human beings as awkward unresolved individuals – deeply religious he said “I hope there are as many in heaven as there are on earth” that he could watch and draw. Also recently Andrew Cranston’s recordings of memories and of course Bonnard always.
A new project coming up or an idea you want to work on?
As I draw the surroundings of tables where people talk, I’ve become increasingly interested by what is around them in their environment. These shapes are really important as they can conjure a confusion and impersonation of either furniture or people. The final ambiguity isn’t important as long as there is a narrative echoed of the presence there or there before.
Finish the sentence „More important than my career is…“
Learning about everyone else.
2019: Where are we going?
Working towards my first Solo exhibition which is happening at The New Glasgow Society in April 5th – 8th.
When the going gets tough…
Stand in heavy rain with your face turned to the sky.
Your city’s favourite spots?
Every friend’s kitchen/ living room/ cubbyhole. The traditional tenement flats in Glasgow built from dark sandstone, provide solid, airy, high ceilinged spaces in which people can come and go. It’s very changeable. When it rains in Glasgow it truly washes everything away, but when the sun shines all the buildings catch the light crisp on the surface, falling into the rooms through the high windows. There is space to breath here and for me that is really important for this beautiful community of creatives. My flatmate and I recently painted our living room wall yellow. Oh and to eat go to Banana Leaf on Dunbarton Road for a curry and dance at African Arts Centre for a good honest fling your arms around boogie.
Do you have a vision?
After leaving education I really wanted to very simply survive life. Where I am at the moment, seeing friends, keeping a community, sharing and making is important. A new future plan is to get young inspired people back into small villages, owning the farms, growing food, knowing individuals, instead of the fast paced, anxiety filled consumerist society cities have seemed to grown into. Life would be slower and we’d be living a lot more.
What would you do if you could change the World?
My new rule to myself is something my friend asked the other day,
“Why is the word consequence always associated so negatively?”
I basically think we should all be jumping in puddles a lot lot more. Let’s subject ourselves to our passions.
Tell us about your future plans…
I am currently really enjoying using separate pieces of paper to draw on and make a larger piece. It still allows me that intimacy to draw up close but creates something jarring that I’m not totally in control of. I really like where lines don’t meet, obscuring certain dimensions but allowing me still to address the tone of the shapes and all together working towards a more abstract and chaotic portrayal.
Last but not least: what is your favourite Song?