Shifting between installation, drawing, sound, sculpture and writing, I draw inspiration from the interdependence of the natural world and earth-based integrative spiritualities. I am a keen permaculture gardener - a way of being with land and community that nurtures the symbiotic relationships between these various lifeforms, allowing our edges to become blurred and our small selves to become part of a much bigger ecosystem. This interdependence and malleability of things is reflected in the materials in my work which constantly shift from one form to another. The dyed fabric pieces in the If It Thunders and Bardo installations have changed over many years from a 'Wheel of the Dharma' for the local Buddhist centre, to an Extinction Rebellion banner, to cascades of fabric pouring from the walls. This is also expressed in the meandering reverb-drenched sound work, and also in the drawings, where partially-erased chalk marks blur edges and contrasting perspectives are overlaid onto each other.
A lot of my work explores darkness, slowness, death, decay, receptivity, and silence, as a challenge to a society which values speed, rationality, technological progress and endless growth, with no way of understanding death. These explorations often take the form of roots, as a metaphor for this mulchy, nutritious and subversive way of being. I'm interested in winter as a time when these processes are happening in both the natural world and ourselves (when we allow it) - it may seem like a time of hopelessness, but in the soil, and in our subconscious, the fruits of the year are being metabolised and the ground is being prepared for the abundance of spring. My daily practice is to come back to the body, to accept and process any tensions and resistances which we habitually avoid, preferring to exist in the 'higher' realms of the intellect or states of bliss. The singer Kris Esfandiari of King Woman said, 'the scariest people are those who aren't integrated with their darkness.'
The highly technological effects pedals and mixers used in my sound work exist disharmoniously with cascades of naturally-dyed fabric; similarly, the orchestral washes of layered vocals and guitar are juxtaposed against the jagged intensity of Zac Pomphrey's screaming vocals and no-input mixing. We want to dive into our split from the natural world, to exist in contradiction, to understand the mess we're in and not place ourselves on a moral pedestal. In the split, however, interesting resonances emerge - the modular nature of the music tech reflects how the different elements of ecosystems connect to and affect each other, and the sonic clash between myself and Zac articulates the incredible sunsets we would see from the studio above the harsh, industrial skyline of Nottingham city centre.
I'm currently living and making work at The Field, an artist co-living project and DIY space near Ilkeston, Derbyshire, where communal meals and foraging walks exist alongside group crits and collaborations. I run several community gardens in Nottingham including the Curious Tower, holding space for people facing difficulties to tap into the nurturing and playful qualities of the land. I'm currently running Touching Ground with Chaos Magic collective - a series of art-making gatherings and exhibitions that honour the creative gifts of everyone who comes to these gardens, regardless of whether they have an arts background or not.
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