Spoil Ground (2011)
3 drawings, indian ink on paper.
Made for friend and artist Jo Millett these drawings are the latest in an enquiry into natural processes. Using my memory of forms in the mud that appear on the banks of the river Hull where I studied and lived for eight years. For me it's an investigation into the continuum between discrete marks and continuous form. I see each image as an individual frame looking at a continuously shifting pattern-scape, using a process designed to loosely echo the processes that create the real forms, each one a short opening of an iris onto that natural process.
I also wanted to say something about finding the beauty in what some consider shit. The river Hull as well as the city itself have a peculiar aesthetic that I had come to appreciate and meant a lot to me and my friends.
I wrote this at the time, but I'd possibly tone it down a bit now:
"In part it's also a (perhaps overly nostalgic) look at one of the elements that to me sums up a peculiar cynical kind of optimism that I see as a character trait of the city. Hull is a big city that is frequently derided and neglected and yet contains some of the most fascinating, talented (and occasionally downright odd) artists, musicians and mutants I have ever met - people working in obscurity with integrity. It's also a place whose most beautiful sights are the derelict factories in Wincolmlee and the grey fog that separates it from Grimsby across the Humber. So this work was partly a small thank you for Jo (and her husband Rob Gawthrop)'s commitment to the city in the face of the cunts, bureaucrats and idiots who couldn't take the time to look at the mud and see anything other than shit and shopping trolleys."