The Shock of the New

Relocating and moving abroad comes with it’s own fantastic
mixture of chaos, excitement, intrepidation and annoyance. 

For the past twelve years life has been
pleasantly spent in a cool Bristol enclave with the comforts of familiarity,
work, friends, love, a cat and the spiritual safety valve that is my art
studio. This is the longest I have stayed in one place since I left home at the
age of 18; I am now 41. 

You get used to comfort and familiarity as you get older
but once again, by hook and by crook I am out of my comfort zone. 

My partner and I have upped sticks and moved
to Bratislava, slap bang in the middle of glorious, historic, weathered,
experienced and sunny Europe.  Falling
into a foreign land where the road signs are incoherent, where the buildings
are alien, where the tongue is twisted in different tones.  It is exciting and baffling all in one

The move has been on the cards for several months and we
are not adept movers.  I come from a
family of collectors; from guitars to gramophones, chairs to pictures and this
doesn’t even cover the 200 paintings which I have created over the past

Sitting here, gazing out the window at our new gloriously
overgrown garden this is the thing that I am craving the most; the unsung
saviour of my studio space; the great alleviator of stress and strain.  With boxing up and moving my creative output
has been put on hold and as each day goes by I can feel this strange, surreal,
untold presence building up in me; that subconscious, desperate longing that
resides in the artist when he/she/they cannot paint.  Freedom is found in the flow of the oil paint.  The application of paint, the abject standing
in front of the canvas searching for meaning becomes the very definition of the
meaning itself.  It rumbles on, pouring
out of the hand, the arm, the mind, the body until it is plastered there in
vibrant, visual colour into some abstract, Surreal semblance of meaning; often
I do not know the meaning of the work itself, only that it has meaning, if not
to anyone else then at least to me.  To
become freed from the shackles of mundanity, to liberate the mind from its
consciousness, to seek and explore some kind of clarity, to open oneself up to
the very challenges of the self and the great world beyond.  To be liberated to be able to comprehend
everything else going on in the world when very little makes sense and disorder
and chaos become the norm…


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