Artist’s Statement & CV

I make prints and textile pieces inspired by Moby Dick and Historic Arctic Whaling, and informed by my travel and research

Moby Dick and Historic Arctic whaling have been my source of inspiration for over a decade.  Working in print and textile my exploration of the book has led to an interest in the history of early British and European whaling.  In the last couple of years I have been able to concentrate full time on my practice and developing my ideas. Visits to European Arctic locations, UK,  European and Canadian whale and whaling related sites, museums and research centres have enabled me to collect source material to produce this personal visual response.  I am enjoying the challenges of producing more considered and resolved work, both as stand-alone pieces and related series.

CV (pdf opens in new window)

Examples

In Residence at Burton Constable

After visiting Burton Constable near Hull in spring 2015 I put a project together with the curator to fund a residency for me. Following a successful application for Grants for the Arts funding I spent over 30 days, spread over eight months working in and around the barn with the whale skeleton.  I used my drawing of the skeleton and the decorative elements from the Hall itself to produce a series of prints and textile pieces that formed the final exhibition in the spring of 2016.

Five Whales Series

In 2013 on a month long voyage around Arctic Seas I saw five different species of whales and visited several whale centres, heritage whaling sites and museums with skeletons of whales on display.  A series of five quilted textile pieces evolved from sketches and photographs of the skeletons, maps both current and historic of the locations where I viewed the whales and other photographs taken on that voyage.

Moby Dick, an illustrated version

I had shied away from making work containing whales as for many years I had no whale imagery that I felt ownership of.  Following my interest in textiles I solved that issue by making my own whales, stuffed and approximately 30 cm in length.  These were made of material that I had found/altered/layered etc and I collected material from places I visited on my travels.  Many of these whales were sent or gifted to friends and people I knew on the condition that they sent me photographs of their whale.  I subsequently curated these and my own photos into an illustration only version of Moby Dick with a photo for every chapter.

http://www.blurb.co.uk/bookstore/detail/3654599