I am a UK-based artist-educator, focusing on the processes of painting by experimenting with materials and methods.
Workshops and courses
PRACTICEXPERIMENT is my process-focused programme of events to help more people access experimental art-making. The next event in the PRACTICEXPERIMENT programme will take place 1-3 June, 2022, in Huddersfield, West Yorkshire. A three-day retreat in a peaceful, rural setting, this event will suit anyone looking to explore mindful painting methods and develop their understanding of colour relationships. Participants will be supported and encouraged to experiment freely. Please contact me for further information.
Buon fresco: a workshop that enables you to enjoy the materials used by Michelangelo. Please go here for more information.
Please go here for information about two courses that I offer: Painting Process and Material Sensitivity.
Work in education
Since May 2021 I have been working as an artist-educator for The Artworks, The Everybody School of Art, based in Halifax, West Yorkshire, UK. I run a range of workshops for children and adults, and Continued Personal Development sessions for art teachers throughout Yorkshire.
From September 2020 to July 2021, I led the art provision at High Well School in Pontefract, a special school for pupils aged 11-16 years with Education, Health and Care Plans for profound and severe Social, Emotional and Mental Health Needs.
In 2017-18, I worked as Project Coordinator for ROTOЯ, a University of Huddersfield initiative to increase public access to art-making processes and research. This included facilitating art-making sessions for adults with additional needs at the charity HOOT Creative Arts which culminated in an exhibition at Huddersfield Art Gallery of the HOOT members' artwork.
The research practice of my PhD entailed a series of painting experiments that focused on the significance of ground, in its physical, historical and metaphorical senses. The objectives were to expose what was actually happening while immersed in the painting experiments, to investigate a concept of painting as a process, and to experiment openly with methods that analysed and became part of that process simultaneously.
Between 2015 and 2017, my work focused on the significance of specific, physical grounds in France during three periods of research near Lascaux, a place famous for the Upper-Palaeolithic cave paintings discovered there in 1940. Research outputs included: a paper presented at the 33rd Psyart International Conference on Psychology and the Arts, Université de Reims Champagne-Ardenne, ‘Grounding painting: an artist-researcher’s experience of Maurice Merleau-Ponty’s 'flesh of the Gestalt’’; and 'Groundsocks', a workshop, artwork and paper presented at On the Moors, a conference in Dartmoor National Park organised by the University of Plymouth's research group
I participated in activities organised by Paint Club, the University of the Arts London's research network that publicly explored and debated what it means to research painting within the context of contemporary art practice. In 2013 my work was included in the exhibition installed in Beaconsfield, London during Paint Club's Visual Symposium.
In 2013, I made a research trip to the Hallen für Neue Kunst, Schaffhausen, Switzerland (now closed), funded by the Windle Charitable Trust award. The artworks I made in response to a close study of the Robert Ryman paintings at the Hallen were about various aspects of touch. This research project was included in my Masters by Research dissertation: 'Touch: an Enquiry', 2014.
Working with other artists
Plans continue for a collaboration with Leeds-based artist Charlotte Cullen: 'Poorly Sorted Materials'. Our project will connect with the geological landscape of Yorkshire as a resource for material enquiry. In March 2021, Cullen and I were invited by Dr Rowan Bailey, Co-director, Centre for Cultural Ecologies in Art, Design and Architecture, University of Huddersfield and Parley to discuss structures of support for artists in Huddersfield as part of a series of podcasts for Temporary Contemporary. You can listen to the podcast here.
In 2019, as part of a team led by British artist Jill Townsley, I helped build a large installation within the European Commission's Joint Research Centre (JRC) in Ispra, Italy. The installation resulted from a collaborative project, The FOREVER-DO, by Townsley and JRC researcher Carlo Ferigato, and was included in the 2019 Resonance III Festival, DATAMI, by SciArt.
I was born in London in 1979 and grew up near Oxford, UK. My first degree was a 1st class BA in Spanish Language and Literature from the University of Leeds (with the 2001 Instituto Cervantes prize for academic excellence). In 2008, after a period working in poverty reduction with the Department for International Development in London and South America, I moved to Huddersfield, West Yorkshire, UK to work as an artist-researcher-educator. My purpose-built studio was completed in 2012, in-between graduating with a 1st class BA in Contemporary Art (with the 2011 Chancellor’s Prize for outstanding achievement) and starting a Masters by Research in Fine Art, for which I was awarded Distinction in 2014. I gained a PhD in 2019 for a programme of work entitled: 'An investigation into a concept of painting via an experimental process of practice-led methods, including an artistic trial of Grounded Theory Method coding, led by a series of painting experiments that focus on the significance of ground'.