Week 3

I decided to paint images of the space as they

appeared on the monitor, from the camera

positioned at various points near the columns.

Helen found me a small table on which I could

paint and I placed it at the end of the space near

the large windows.  I knew this would be a

challenge as I had last painted in watercolour

when I was around 12 years old!   I remember

enjoying it:  I used to copy reproductions of

impressionist paintings from art books.

My doubts set in as I found my first attempts

faltering and underconfident.   How could I justify

exhibiting these experiments.  I decided that this

learning process would become part of the work,

and I would show it, warts and all.  The residency

after all was all about my response to the space,

so the time spent here would allow the work its own

momentum.  Painting as a performative

installation, if you like.   The paintings after all

would only be shown in this context: they would

make no sense taken away and displayed


Considerations of scale emerged when I initially

started with the paintings the same size as the

monitor 8ins x 4ins.   I found this too fiddly, and

found that upping the image to 10 ins x 5 and a half

ins.  was more manageable.   Making the paintings

larger would push them too far away from the

scale of  the monitor

and would give the impression that I was

foregrounding a sense of a more `stand alone`

kind of painting.   For me, each element in the

space, the camera on the stepladder, the table with

the monitor, and the paintings needed to be seen

as of equal importance.

Another challenge for the painting process was

my decision to keep the camera slightly out of

focus.   I wanted the space to be recognizable, but

to subvert the surveillance aspect.  I wanted to

move the image away from a kind of clear

photographic representation.   I enjoyed painting

shapes of which I only had a vague idea of their

origin – a small smudge of red was supplied by part

of a car seen through one of the small windows.

Because of my inability to create a dexterous

technique gained by those who have been using

this medium for year, I found myself painting

in an oddly contradictory way: resulting in

slightly hard edged images gleaned from out of

focus ones.   This is a frustrating process, but as

time goes on I feel more confident in how

each painting evolves.


























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