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  • Writer's pictureGillian Holding

Left Bank Residency: Day 5

A day of “challenges” (because I’m being polite) on all fronts: technical/presentation/hanging issues still having to be thought through in the abstract, and technical materials and paint challenges cropping up every other hour in my attempts to think through and execute drawing, translucent layers and gilding techniques. All done shivering over endless cups of tea and coffee, with my scarf trailing in wet paint as I am back to working on the floor. And seeing really fabulous work emerging from my fellow residents makes me ever more hyper-critical of my own efforts.


But still, so much exciting stuff is happening in the midst of the angst that I would far sooner be facing the tough bits than not. It has also lead to an epiphany moment. This is, after all, primarily a short residency, with a very very short exhibition of work tagged on at the end. This is not about working to a final ultimate goal of showing perfectly resolved and finished work. This is about the process of researching, experiencing, reflecting and experimenting in a new space.

Deprived of my comfort blanket Barkston studio environment and a “normal” (were there any such thing in any event) timeframe to work towards a show, I’m approaching work method and production in a radically different way. I’m having to take the sort of risks that in my ideal world of art making I like to imagine taking, but in the real world, pressures of “perfection” and a tendency to revert to familiar technique invariably intervene.

I joked yesterday I may end up throwing paint on the Perspex panels. Many a true word, etc., etc.

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