Sky Stones 3

In my tiny stone studio, I am wearing so many layers of clothes I can hardly move. Knock large chunks of ice off my paint brush, which I had mistakenly left in water overnight. Find I can paint quite well with gloves on (years of practice).

I am painting the top surfaces of the stones white – to make them a little bit smoother and to help make the colours of my images more vibrant when eventually I stick them on. Fret about the colour of the sky images that I now have on my computer – I have rung two printers about costs and details – but all are closed for the holidays. Fret about my timing – if only I didn’t have so many other demands upon my time! But the truth is I can never really get fired up about a piece until I am right up against the deadline. I think I can squeeze in a few extra days ….

I work out ways of packing and transporting the stones to the Museum. I need to protect their paper surfaces, and make it as easy as possible for people to carry them. (Some of the slabs, I should say, are around three inches thick, and quite heavy and rough). I also need to make sure I have sole use of our shared car at the time of installation.

I muse upon why such a simple work and such a straightforward concept should require such complexity of planning and preparation. I believe that in simplicity lies the greatest mystery. But simplicity, it seems, is the hardest thing of all to achieve.

As I paint and occasionally chip off protruding lumps from the stone – I think of the space needed for the work to make its fullest impact. I think of museums, how to me they often seem cluttered: and I almost tip myself into panic at the sudden thought of Skystones, overwhelmed by paintings and artefacts. This will not happen of course.
llanestones_wp

Lunch, then down to the estuary to collect more stones. It is still very cold. Try out new flyers’ hat with fur lining that I got for Christmas and add a pair of knee length seafarers’ socks to my layers of clothing. The work is tiring, especially climbing back up the lane laden with stones. Why am I doing it? Because I have to; because being out in the landscape and the physicality of the work makes me feel myself as alive, and because this sort of activity gives me a sense of continuity with humanity throughout time.

Tonight, a quiet celebration with the family of another glorious New Year.

May 2009 bring more peace and more prosperity to more people.

About throughstones

I am primarily a visual artist, living on the North Devon coast, a beautiful semi-rural area in South West England. I am interested in full engagement with 'place' and the eternal movement of life - particularly as it relates to what we call 'the natural environment'.
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