‘How much of our happiness or unhappiness in life is linked to expectation? My art form initially developed as an emotional and therapeutic response to a period of personal distress, and has developed and progressed to explore the link between expectation and our sense of fulfilment.
‘In the days following my mother’s death I found many items, including old family photos, letters and a collection of my father’s childhood books, which had been lovingly inscribed by various members of his family. I found these hand-written inscriptions touching and it highlighted the transient nature of time and the sadness inherent in our natural decay. Using collage and assemblage I began to create ‘Joseph Cornell’ style boxes using the materials that I had found in my mother’s home.
This process has since evolved into a collection of small boards, collaged with old books and beeswax. The small scale of the pieces entices the viewer to move closer, creating a more personal and intimate experience. The work is richly layered and often incorporates complex and challenging scenes. By deploying the use of age-withered books and beeswax this not only adds to the nostalgic experience visually, but also via the olfactorysenses. I also enjoy the unpredictability of working with the beeswax in the final stages.
‘My subject matter and tone: sometimes edgy, sometimes playful, have all been influenced by my trauma and yet have undeniably assisted my recovery. A nostalgic and sometimesmelancholic experience, and open to personal interpretation, is how I like to describe my work, and yet always with a sense of reference to happiness and its relationship to expectation.