Selected Artworks

Cobalt Blue Papier-Mâché Sculptures.

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A collection of blue sculptures, with the theme of the pains and moods of motherhood. Using blue paint, the traditional colour of the Madonna, dabbed repetitively over white paint for an intense, bright hue. The materials of the sculptures that create the pitted forms, and rutted and bumpy textures are visible, bearing vulnerability and ethereality. The subject matter conveys elements of physical and mental changes to the mother after pregnancy and birth in abstract figurative sculptures. I wanted to exaggerate the body changes the mother tolerates, ignores, and plays down, as her focus and unconditional love turn to the child. Parallel to the physical changes, the mind of the mother can be flooded with extreme emotions, from ecstatic happiness to sadness including ‘the blues’ and for some mothers, serious post-natal depression. 

Figurative Sculptures 

Fox Tiles

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Fox tiles is a site-specific response artwork to The London 17th century shipwreck. After viewing the excavated artifacts of 1665, in Southend Central Museum and extensive research into the significance of the large vessel that exploded in the Thames Estuary near Southend-On-Sea. The wish was to bring attention to this historic tragedy, whilst raising awareness that excessive consumption erodes the site of the wreck and concurrently threatens the earth’s environment. The art installation was to echo the museum’s ethos of sustainability, learning, and engagement.  The art piece was ephemeral, site-specific, and a community, collaborative project. Three hundred sculptures of fox faces, made from recycling, were floated, in the Estuary. This number represented the souls of the dead. The fox was the missing piece from a ceramic tile, one of the artifacts in the museum. Simultaneously the floating sculptures equated to the waste of packaging, its impact, and to the contemporary artifacts of the future. The project was achieved by taking it out to community groups, making it a collaborative sculpture, and talking about 17th-century London and the ship with the same name. This was a fascinating time, contiguous to the Great Fire of London and the Black Plague. Recorded by Samuel Pepys in his diaries. The art piece was filmed and shown in The Beecroft Gallery, Southend. Packaging as a material was chosen to make each fox face due to the vast number of all types, that humans unnecessarily wrap objects in. These are carried in and out daily aboard gigantic container ships along the same river, contributing to global pollution. These vessels also disturb the silt that preserves the wreck of The London in its unique condition, resulting in that being unstable. The art was considered so as not to pollute the river. Afterward, the site was restored to its former state. 

Acknowledgements: I would like to thank Southend Museums’ curators, Kevin Marsh, and Vittorio Richetti, and University Centre South Essex Tutor, Maria Swepson for the opportunity and guidance. Research showed Steve Ellis is an important person in campaigning for the retrieval of the artifacts, keeping them in a Southend Museum’s Collection, and a lead diver of the wreck. He is responsible for The London Shipwreck Project. Inspiration for this art piece has been taken from a local Ceramics Artist, Alison Bournes, and her artist response to The London. She created exquisite ceramic shoes to raise funds for Ellis’ charity. These were recently on show in the Clifftown Telephone Museum. 

Development Credits: The Cornerstone Church Toddlers Group, Leigh Community Center, Dorisarty Collective, South Essex College, Joscelyne Beach Swimmers, Damon Burgoyne, Anne Pettenuzzo, Claire Young, Karen Penny, Christine Hayhurst, members of the community who saved packaging, all participants who made a fox head, and all participants present at the installation art piece. 

Spiral

Material Culture – Trainers

Coffee Stirrers

Oil on Gessoed Canvas – Sea Theme