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Solitaire was conceived during the summer of 2020 in response to the shockingly high death rates in care homes. More than 22,000 people died between March and May 2020 from COVID-19.  The time line of what happened is well documented. To understand why the system failed so tragically, requires us to consider how we see older women and men in our society. Ageism is lethal.  The work consists of a large-scale sculpture of the board game Solitaire, photographed and animated.  My version is constructed from wire with pebbles as pieces and has a barbed wire surround. I chose beach pebbles because like people they contain memories of where they have been and when they were created. Solitaire is played alone. As you jump over a piece it is removed from the game, until only one piece remains in the centre. The wire references being trapped in a system.


Trees are very important to me as they stretch back and forward in time. The oldest tree is 4000 years old. Trees planted today will outlive us. They are made of dead and living material and although they cannot move they can regrow limbs and communicate with each other.  Many artists such as Ai Wei Wei and Giuseppe Penone have created art works using tree roots.  This piece is inspired by SeaHenge a circle of stumps, dated at 2049 BC. It is photographed at the site where the circle was found near The Wash in East Anglia.


This piece Bird bomb – is created from the remains of a blackbird I found while walking in East Anglia.  It had been eaten by a raptor, probably a sparrow hawk.  When I reconstructed it as a M67 grenade I was thinking about how human activity is destroying the habitats of birds and the need to treat all species as sentient beings.


Air Water and Earth are known as the commons –– resources we share in common with other species. This is part of an ongoing project investigating the reciprocal nature of care between people and the planet. With this project I have begun by thinking about the word commons – which coveys the idea of shared ownership. I liked the idea of creating a clay alphabet that can be re-configured to produce new words and new meanings.  The ideal of the commons and the use of the word is constantly being re-invented. I am interested in the idea of a Critical Zone a study group and web space initiated by Bruno Latour and others that investigates ways artists can create common ground.

I wanted to work directly with material from the earth and I have created a clay alphabet. Clay has been used by humans since 14,000 BC, glazing – the process of covering clay with glass,  was introduced around 1,500BC.  I have been experimenting with different glazes using common elements – iron, copper, flint.

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