I respond to philosophical questions by translating my thoughts and experiences by drawing experimentally in the expanded field and through collage. I’m interested in the processes behind thinking, observation, conceptual knowledge and how we respond to those things. Why do we experience the things the way we do? How do we learn and understand an idea? I feel we can move towards understanding and challenging our interpretations of reality through the acts of traditional and contemporary drawing.
Informed and supported by my work as an environmental activist, I am especially interested in how drawing can be used to positively affect physical and social change in relation to environmental ethics and the natural world. I investigate this by exploring ways in which drawn ‘line’ can directly support wildlife and challenge audiences to reflect on their own relationship to the Earth.
Who are we in relation to the world around us? How do we experience nature? What roles do man and nature play, and how do they impact one another?
I draw from observation before expanding upon these traditional drawing processes by taking them off the page and into other artforms, such as sculpture, installation and community participation, where I work exclusively with natural, recycled and/or biodegradable materials using low-impact and sustainable methods and processes. Layers and connections are important in my practice; the intellectual, sensual and material often sits in relation to the works concepts, subjects, media and contexts.
I also champion access and inclusivity within the arts through various means as part of my overall practice; for example promoting community participation within the projects I deliver – most notably an experimental artist-led research journal, The Critical Fish.
Academically, I am also interested in the relationships between visual arts, the disability arts movement and meaningful mental health recovery. This, alongside my extensive work within NHS mental health services (delivering service-user led arts projects, producing service-user exhibitions, facilitating arts groups and mental health recovery-oriented courses within the community), informs how I inclusively present my own work and engage with participants and wider audiences.