Fragments of Identity Collection

My art is evolving into a coherent collection. I have such wide interests in different media, and lots of disjointed ideas that take me on exciting tangents…but now I’m developing as an aspiring professional artist I am focussing on one clear collection.

My training is in Traditional Chinese Medicine, meditation and qi gong. I started with shiatsu training 20 years ago when I first decided to follow my heart’s desire to focus on helping others. Following this I spent eight years in Manchester training in many different aspects of TCM and Buddhism, and have been teaching and practicing for 18 years. Like many people, I was dissuaded from pursuing my first love, art, because I was very capable academically. So, I have a BA Hons degree and an MSc, but they have little relevance to my core identity. Of course, I did these for a reason, nothing was wasted, and I am where I am now because of all of my experiences. Throughout my life I’ve continued to be creative in many different ways, and more recently, I’ve put more work into being my authentic self by pursuing what’s in my heart.

I’ve been working on this new collection since my Mum died in April 2019. However, the journey, of course, started when I was first making marks and having fun exploring colours as a toddler. And that is exactly how I begin the process of creating these mixed media paintings. Finding inspiration in Pauline Caughey’s art, I work in three layers, beginning with mindfully exploring how three-year-old me would be feeling/thinking/creating, then moving on to the point of view of teenaged-me, and the final stage is consolidating and refining the work because of who and how I am now, as an adult. Along with the paintings I’ve explored this concept of identity in other media too. My focus will continue to be the painting, I enjoy the therapeutic, self-exploratory process so much! It’s very exciting to feel more attuned to my voice as an artist.

Below are some example of work I’ve completed in this collection.

This hand stitched piece is called 60heart, looking at my Mum’s identity in the ways I connect with it.
This mixed media painting, ‘Day and Night’, follows the therapeutic, self reflective process of exploring my identity.
These ceramic spheres look at the patchwork of memories, experience and feelings that contribute to an identity.
‘Mum/Alice Falling’, exploring my identity through the giving process.
Ceramic fragment, leaves from my Mum’s funeral flowers pressed into clay. ‘Not letting go’
‘Throw Your Dreams into Space’, mixed media painting, 60cmx60cm, another piece exploring identity by meditating on three stages of my life.

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