ABOVE : Harriet Rose Morely's 'How did we care? How do we care? How will we care? at The Theatre Royal. Plymouth Art Weekender 2020.
Plymouth Art Weekender 2020 | Devon and Cornwall Art and Event Photography
In a year in which nothing can be taken for granted, and all bets are off, it was anything but a dead cert that the Plymouth Art Weekender would even be going ahead. While we all re-evaluate what is important, it was nice to visit streets and spaces, some familiar, some new and surprising, around a city and arts festival that reflects a love of art, now extending far beyond the confines of these three invigorating days, and the boundaries of an ever changing city centre.
ABOVE: John Walter's 'Lockdown Tarot' Plymouth Art Weekender 2020
What does the future hold? What does caring for someone really entail? What does 'US', Community and Union really mean? I asked artists and curators, about their work and what a festival during a pandemic was like for them.
BELOW: No Soap Radio at Kaarst part of Plymouth Art Weekender 2020
Huhtamaki Wab - 'Genius Treasure Collection'
ABOVE : Some of the paintings from The Genius Treasure Collection at St Saviours
How long have you been collecting art?
“ So I kind of always made my own work, and then about 10yrs ago, I kind of had a few little objects in my bedroom, it was like a little shrine, and then maybe 6yrs ago a friend was like 'You should collect more and work on this project' and then I just started going to markets like three times a week, on Wednesdays, Saturdays, twice on Sundays..and I was like, just getting more and more stuff and I thought I will do exhibitions of it and then it kind of formed into what is known today as the 'Genius Treasure Collection'.
Yeah..It's a delight mate..it is absolutely... amazing. You have got a great eye. I was just saying to someone that the amazing thing about it is that even the things that people might not think are 'good', are all interesting, for various reasons. They all make you go back again and have another look, and some of them are fantastic works of art in their own right. Very unpretentious and direct.
“ Oh totally there is a real joy to a lot of the work, and I think that when I see something in a market, then, it's like almost an instant emotional attachment 'Oh wow his is a really cool piece' or It makes you wonder, where has it come from , who the maker is... It raises a lot of questions.
There is also this thing because I was living in London for 14 yrs and I was just thinking about markets starting to disappear and land getting developed, and there is also it seemed like it was getting harder to find these art works..”
Is a lot of this in storage or do you have a big space anywhere where you can have it out?
“ The history of it is, I grew up in Devon and am back down here and have been for a year now, but I was living in London and for 6 years ...I was living in a kind of old Church and a recording studio but I was living in the drum room. So it was all on display ,it was a really big space, and then it was open on Thursday nights to the public, and so on Thursday evenings, I would hide all my socks and pants, and put all my stuff away, and then it would be like a museum for the evening. For about a year it was open each Thursday night . Then it went into storage for a year and so when we were installing here, it was like 'Oh wow I remember this piece'
ABOVE :Huhtamaki Wab at Plymouth Art Weekender 2020
Is this your entire collection ? ( It is impressive anyway)
“ Yeah. It is going to keep on growing, obviously this year with Covid it's been hard because there haven't been any markets but I will go back into it when they are open again”
So what kind of medium do you work with as an artist?
“ At art college (about 15 years ago) I did kind of performance based stuff but I paint now ..it that is a very separate thing to this, this is it's own thing.
What I like about this, is a lot of this work is really direct, and some of it is by artists with real skill and appreciation of the medium they are working with, and some of it, without wanting to be offensive, is quite 'naïve'. Like these portraits. They are fantastic because they are almost not quite like the people they are supposed to look like, but on second viewing are in some strange way, exactly like the subjects.
“ I like to think they are like they are ...something that can be enjoyed by all. There is something here for everyone. There is a huge mix of things”
Any favourites for yourself?
“ It's a hard question man. People always ask me this, but I kind of see it as one big family, The thing is I don't like to pick out favourites..”
Like your favourite child?
“ There are some things that I am so happy I found”
I love The Simpsons, there is that brooding thing there that you know is going to stay in your head after you leave the space
“ The Simpsons thing is funny because I found these.. in a ..market in London and I thought, I had seen these images before. Basically someone has painted them, that is supposed to be 'Girl in a Pearl Earring' with Marge, and I can't remember Homer's, but someone had painted them in America, and they went on to be viral as an internet meme and then someone has copied them”
I would not be surprised if they had featured in the program as well. It is quite self referential and meta as a program and we forget it is quite vintage and retro itself now.
In much of this work I like things like the changes in perspective and the fact that the scale is all wrong, making it more than just representative realism. It makes it much more interesting than if it was perfect.
“ ...It is a celebration of people's creativity. Allowing people to make something amazing and beautiful, ..to be inspired ''Oh yeah I can make stuff, it doesn't matter if it is conventionally 'good'. It is the joy of it. I hope it is inspiring for people. I am a great believer in making and creating stuff because it is good for yourself and people around you. We should be encouraged, it is for everyone to make something ..”
This end piece, the fruit head, The name of the piece that inspires it alludes me right now
Yes that's it. It hung in Plymouth Museum in 2013 as part of an exhibition about portraits and faces curated by Monika Kinley and it was the first thing you saw. I write and talk to people and students about art and I use it to explain to people that abstraction is not a modern thing, and that is even if you ignore Picasso and the idea of it coming from Africa. That painting is from 1500, the Renaissance, and Da Vinci etc and look! ...someone has made it !
“ Yeah I found that at the side of an A road, there was second hand furniture and It was in a barn behind it.
Did you have a van or a car to pick it up?
“ I was with my girlfriend, and we put it in a little hatchback and took it to her parents house and put it in her parents garage. ..borrowed my Mums car and it was just me and the fruit head..took it to London..”
ABOVE : An Arcimboldo's 'Summer' like Fruit head. Part of the Genius Treasure Collection
Vanessa Allen and Nicky Harwood - 'Distanced Conversations'
ABOVE : 'Distanced Conversations' on show at Ocean Studios during the 2020 Plymouth Art Weekender
Can you tell me about the genesis of the work, how the initial seeds and ideas for it came about?
V.A “We swapped two pieces of work just before lock down. These two pieces in the window sill. So we just responded to those during lock down really”
N.H “ Normally we would meet up every fortnight..anyway, we would keep in touch, but we have been doing this all via Facebook messaging, video calling, three hour long phone calls discussing what each of us are making, but not seeing it. The first time we physically see the work (well you saw one piece of mine when we came to look at the site) but other than that, coming here on Wednesday was the first time we saw each others work. It has been interesting”
Do you have a history of collaborating with work or is this your first joint piece together ?
V.A “ This is our first collaboration project but we have both been studying at Plymouth Art College (different years) and we have known each others work”
N.H. “ We met each other at Plymouth College of Art and immediately we knew though we have got very different work, there is an overlap. Our interest in landscape, walking..
V.A “...Light and Shadow, layers”
Do you usually install instillations or do you usually create objects as works in their own right?
V.A “It is probably our first installation”
ABOVE : The two pieces swapped before lockdown
This space is amazing
N.H “Yes they put out an open call for proposals to exhibit here, and we responded to that but we didn't know which space we would be given, and we got this great space”
V.A “ It is beautiful, it is our first installation really and we have definitely tried to respond to the space with our work once we knew where we were going”
N.H “ It is an easy space to respond to, ..but both of us have a history of making work that hangs on the wall, in a frame, and we don't do that any more. Majority of the time we do much different work, so to be in a space where actually it is harder to hang things, because there are no fixings, you are not allowed to drill, so you can play with hanging”
V.A “ Thinking about it, you have in the space some individual pieces, because we started doing that before we knew what the space was and then we started responding. So you have our work right from the very beginning and then how it evolved to the space afterwards as well”
Early in your career it is unusual to get to work with a space like this and you are not afraid to be ambitious then when somebody displays a bit of belief in you
N.H “ Lots of opportunities tend to be big group work..but to have all of this and to be able to play and experiment”
V.A “Yes the pieces have really evolved into the space”
N.H “ and you end up selecting big work that does not get lost”
William Luz - A Pavilion for U.S
ABOVE : William Luz's 'A Pavilion for U.S'
How has the weekend been for you so far?
“It has been good, it has been really interesting. I have enjoyed just sort of being on the street, and I have realised that this is the work now, the interactions that I have down on the street. They have been interesting, good, challenging, difficult, all kinds of responses.”
It was surprisingly moving. I just said to Llyr, it was a bit like being at Church or Synagogue without the religious stuff. It was really nice. I tried to arrive without any preconceptions...and that was really surprising and engaging. So does your work often follow this format reacting with the public and the area that you are in?
“No this is quite new to me, working in a public realm... I guess. Normally all my work is coming from drawing. Normally, I present work and then run away from it. So being out here and next to it has been kind of a learning curve and an interesting one and there are definitely aspects of it that I really enjoy, and then kind of just confronting that desire to run away is good.”
ABOVE : William Luz performing in Plymouth's Union Street at the 2020 Weekender
Well you appear very confident and nobody would have guessed
“Well I think in that sense it is because a timed performance, so people are coming and I step onto that stage and whether people are here or not is not so relevant but then when you get down off the street it is more interactional and less hierarchical”
Euphrosyne Andrews and Daniel Fletcher - All Things Hang like a Drop of Dew
ABOVE : Daniel Fletcher and Euphrosyne Andrews at PAW 2020 Hyde Park House
When did you become aware of the space into which you would be installing?
DF“ So we have been installing for a couple of weeks. This was an old Estate Agent a vacant retail unit. The walls were red and it had this horrible stained blue carpet, so we obviously worked on the walls and laid this hay floor, which was quite a process”
Have you worked together before or is this your first joint piece?
EA“ We have shared a studio together for four or five years now but we have never exhibited together. Our work is quite separate but we have been living and working down here for the last seven months, so though it would be nice to bring it together in a show”
Forgive my ignorance but does one of you paint and is one of you an installation artist or do you cross over?
DF “ I paint..”
EA “ I usually work more with print based and textile work but over the past months I have not had access to that, so have been working a lot more with paintings and drawings..initial studies..like source material”
Is this your first PAW as a participant, What has it been like in a time like this?
EA “It is strange but it is great. It's so good that it has gone ahead. Recently with all the news, restrictions that came in we thought 'Does this mean we can't do it?' and all the support, sorting out all the venues and risk assessments. It's a bit weird but quite nice in a way because people can come in. It is a big space. It's pretty safe in here and it is nice just to have a space where people can interact all be it in a different sort of way. Come and visit and look at the work to feel a part of it. There is a lot of stuff happening outdoors. Just down by The Box the Low Profile sign writing that was really good.
This is a bit out on a limb... but we have had a good turn out.
What has been the reactions like from those who came to see the work?
DF “ We have had quite a positive reaction to it and it has been nice to hear people's interpretations of how the work has come together. We worked with another artist as well who ..wrote a performance, a text, like a poem and we have some nice responses to how that goes together”
EA “ It has been nice for us because we have been working together quite exclusively for the past month so it's good to get the work out and think about it in a wider context”
Sarah Trotter - 'Endangered to Extinction'
ABOVE: Sarah Trotter at Leadworks painting 'Endangered to Extinction' PAW 2020
When did you start painting this piece?
“This morning. The background was already done (it takes a while to dry), but the seal it self I started at about 7ish.”
How long do you plan to go on today?
“About 5ish and then a day tomorrow”
What was the inspiration behind the project?
“I wanted to create an awareness about the importance of connecting not just with others but with the natural world. So I wanted to paint it live to engage with the present and show the process. I think it is all about sharing knowledge and education...I have taken inspiration from the local seals that have started to come into the harbour. They are endangered as is the herring gull..”
Philip Battley- Part of 'Allusive Lines' at Leadworks
ABOVE: Philip Battley at Leadworks
How long have you been painting?
“ For the last 5 ,7 years but I have always drawn”
Do you always work large scale like this?
“ Well these were quite a new thing. These are my kids. Thomas was from a project in college..they started off as drawings”
Pencil or Charcoal?
“ These are about their concerns..my daughter..deforestation, palm oil...and my son..it is more about corporate greed... Someone asked me 'What is in his hand?' It is not his hand, It is an Indian Buddhist mudra..teaching. The youth teaching the older generation.
ABOVE : Philip Battley's large scale work at Leadworks in Rendle Street
It must be nice to be in the same exhibition as your Dad?
“ Me and my Dad we are in the Plymouth Arts club together. So every year normally we would have an exhibition, but not his year obviously it has been cancelled. We used to meet once a week in the Swarthmore at Mutely, but not at the moment because of the average age, many of the members, are now shielding...”
Simon Russell “Seeing Sound, Robotic Pen Plotting” Ocean Studios RWY
ABOVE : One of Simon Russell's pen plots in Plymouth 2020
Would you describe yourself as a 'sonic artist', 'an artist inspired by sound' or is this body of work that is sound related, a more recent departure?
“ Not all of it is. I have been doing these plots for about two years now. I was mainly working with animation and then these pieces were more about trying to do something different..it's nice using paper etc.”
Can you describe the process, because these look like plots, blueprints, plans?
“ Yes I have got the plotter upstairs which I am going to set up. It is basically a robot arm (shows software) ...
Is that Max MSP?
“ No, but it is in that world. With this example I take a piano score and then it converts that in software, to take the levels of the notes and convert it into the abstract pattern. Then I send that out to the plotter”
Are you familiar with Kandinsky?
“Yes, it is called 'Auto Kandinsky' and at school... he was the first person that got me interested in that idea, and I have been plotting on and off for many years”
Sound is a very powerful subconscious medium (which surrounds us all the time) with which to work
“Yeah..It's weird ..it is something you think about when you are trying to bring the two together, because I do like animation too. I find that colour (like sound can be) is something that you definitely get a feeling from it ..whereas drawings are more like thoughts”
Shows software working...Ah like a visual score. So when you see a repetition of a symbol is that a specific note or delineated range?
“ If I took away all the extra stuff, This more like a randomised version of MIDI in which I would put out a thousand or two thousand variations, where as that (points to work) is a sound wave”
ABOVE : Five of Simon Russell's 'Seeing Sound' works at Ocean Studios in 2020
So one is a bit more stochastic and one is more representative?
“ Yes. These are both recordings from the Amazon rainforest. So that is why there is a really full spectrum. There is a thing called soundscape ecology and when you take a recording you can basically tell when an environment is f***ed because there are bigger gaps, because every species naturally evolves to take up a little niche. That is a coloured version of the auto Kandinsky. I am trying to work out a language with it. There are so many ways you can try it. Like you say there is still no accepted grammar for it.
No, I have found you will like a painter develop your own
ABOVE : Simon Russell's animates sound works at Ocean Studios in 2020
This tree one looks like a valley and it invites you to impose your own interpretations.
“It is interesting like you said about conversations about sound that in animation when talking to a client, because there is not that grammar they will use their hands and noises 'Whizz, Zoom'to explain what they want”
Paul Brookes CEO of 'The Box'.
ABOVE : Paul Brookes CEO of Plymouth's 'The Box'.
Can you tell me about the role that 'The Box' is playing in this years Plymouth Art Weekender?
“ We are delighted that 'The Box' has been able to open just in time for the Plymouth Art Weekender. We have been racing against the clock right thru Covid 19 to get ourselves open, and one of the key things for us was to be ready for PAW. We have got a range of exhibitions, temporary exhibitions from artists ...because this was also an opportunity for Plymothians to see 'The Box' first., We extended the offer to make sure that any one who wanted to be part of PAW, and we have extended the hours at the end of each day, so that people can get tickets, as well as the Plymouth Ballot we issued back in January/February”
Can I ask you about how 'The Box' is going to interact with the existing contemporary artists and art institutions in the city, like the Art College and University?
“ Yes, we have always (the old city Museum and Art Gallery) worked in partnership with the University and the College of Art and what used to be the Plymouth Art Centre and Kaarst in a range of multi-sited shows in the past. We will continue to do that. We are very much looking forward to The British Art show.. next year. As part of that 'The Box' sees itself as something that attracts artists and the interest in art, in the city ,is very important to us, that there is an arts ecology in the city, and we want to support and develop that.”
So you will play an integral part in the next British Art Show?
“Yes 'The Box' is the main principal partner for the BAS, but there will be other venues as well. The College of Art, The University and Kaarst as the other main venues. With the British Art Show one hope there will also be a fringe menu as well.
ABOVE : 'Signs For/Of Change' Low Profile in Tavistock Place
Jacqui Orly Ammon - Almost Surely The Pythias Stool
ABOVE: Almost Surely The Pythias's Stool by Jacqui Orly Ammon Plymouth 2020
If it is OK with you I will talk to you as I play with the letters
Is most of your work site specific?
“Site is important to me. I do not always respond to them, directly .. I may just bring my stuff to a site, but I like street sites, ..concrete, outdoor sites that involve the average stranger, whom wouldn't ordinarily come to an art show...and I like the fact of the audience being in cars, I would like to use the site again
I love car parks, especially this one
“Was actually aiming for one of the higher stories, which was totally empty at the time...would like to have an exhibition there, full stop. It's a fabulous space”
ABOVE : Jacqui Orly Ammon at Plymouth Art Weekender 2020
Plymouth is known for this kind of architecture, cast concrete in the mass rebuilding after the war. I love these buildings but it divides people much in the same way as the Civic Centre. Did concrete and brutalism factor into your decision to choose this or was it more of a random idea to site this work in the car park?
“ I do quite like brutalism and it sounds crazy but living in Cornwall I kind of miss the concrete ,the urban humanity”
Where did you grow up?
“ I was born in Johannesburg, grew up in Manchester, lived in London then moved to Cornwall...I think it is more like sci-fi films, like I love the ceiling and I have been taking photos, it is that whole futuristic sci-fi feel”
It is a grid on a grid in a grid
This is not particularly lyrical but some words are starting to morph into phrases.
Do words figure quite a lot in your work?
“ Because I am quite visually dominant ..I am actually finding applications really hard and though I have a lot of words I just want to connect them more. Trying to connect abstract visual ideas with what they want you to write on paper , it's also actually very hard to write stuff because the work changes all the time”
ABOVE : Playing with letters in The Theatre Royal Car Park in Plymouth City Centre
I think I may swap some of the words around. 'Sumo' is suggesting 'Soy' and then 'Sat' but 'Lame Sumo' is great when you combine it with 'Long Haul' as in truck driving and 'Soy Gate' sounds like some kind of conspiracy of seasoning or selling ingredients in a back alley. 'Brute Red Text'?
I could not help thinking before arriving, of thinking of playing chess with Death. The table and chair, scrabble pieces, and nobody opposite you. A conversation with yourself. You dropped a 'T'
“ A little bit of a subconscious link to something a bit Taroty, Taroesque?,..oh that is prettily laid out”
(A conversation about YID being the last letters, Our families, The Plymouth Synagogue etc)
Have you been part of PAW before?
“ Yes for the last two years. I did a controversial piece last year that I want to do again. I put a load of money down and it all got stolen.
That is fantastic, like the KLF setting fire to a million pounds?
“ Everyone says that but I don't remember it. It was really great. I did not cover it enough”
Was it real money?
“Yes real money. A thousand pounds, and it all went
Did you aim for it to be stolen?
“No I did not aim for anything. I just took responsibility and I just walked away.”
I do not know whether to apologise on behalf of the people of Plymouth or congratulate the entrepreneurial nature of the person who took it
“Ha! Well I hope it went to a good place and did some good. I prepared myself for the worst, but even with that preparation..”
That was a brave thing to do...and interesting
“Well I want to do it again but maybe not with my money”
It was your money as well ?
“ It came at a funny time, A lot of things..”
Much easier to just take your clothes off
“Well you know what every £5 note was like flaying skin off my body, I didn't think I would feel that way but I felt so vulnerable, like I was taking my clothes off. I wanted it to be part of a story and not so publicised”
Noah Taylor - Part of 'Radioactive Shine' with Grey Area
BELOW : 'Fight Radioactive Bad Metals with Protective Good' - Noah Taylor 2020
Are both these pieces, the Mac and the Can your work?
“Yes, there is a film as well. That is the making of the coat by a friend of ours called Leslie Jo Thompson, who has made a film for me before. She is an ex Art College photographer and some years ago I did another project making a sculpture and she ...(working with some students down at my workshop) made a stop motion film for me, so when I was doing this project I asked her to make another stop motion film for me.”
So have you always worked with metal?
“...I have pretty much always worked with metal but I have never worked with lead before.
So the reasoning behind the choice of lead? The dockyard, Nuclear, War?
“It is a play on the idea of lead being proof from radioactivity. When you go to a doctor and you have an x-ray done..”
They give you a lead jacket to wear
“and even the ones working frequently with X-Rays. They are wearing what look likes a coloured vinyl, sort of jerkin, or whatever, but inside that ..is lead...then it is kind of this play on ,consumerism and fashion would still have to go on even though the worlds f***ed, you are all still being told to go out and spend money and buy yet more stuff. Even though you are slowly dying of radiation, here is a lead coat that is going to like nominally protect you a bit, again making claims for your product that actually aren't true.
Anyway the Irn Bru which sounds like it has got metal in it. The KI is the chemical symbol for potassium iodide, which protects you from..
Is that what they give you as a tablet?
“As a tablet, what that does is your body takes up the Potassium Iodide into your thyroid gland and then doesn't take up the radioactive..”
A kind of blocker almost?
“Indeed. So that is kind of my idea of a detox drink with a metal sounding name. That is actually is a real can of Irn Bru that I have sandblasted and got a friend of mine who I work with at flameworks... she is a really good sign writer, so she painted that can up, modelled on an Irn Bru can with the..brewed in Plymouth to a secret recipe.”
ABOVE : Noah Taylor at Leadworks at the 2020 Plymouth Art Weekender
I love the idea of lead flashing and the mannequin in a lead flasher mac...maybe that is my warped mind?
“ Well she is actually quite a sexy looking mannequin, they are human enough, especially a painted one like that ..I spent quite a while on Facebook market place,.. I didn't want just a blank cipher, I wanted something that looked like she had a personality. Somebody has actually taken the time to paint her up, and do actually quite a good job of putting blusher on the cheek..”
Did you model the mac on an existing garment?
“No, I don't actually sew, but I wanted something that was like a weather proof, a bit grey and Eastern European, Cold War..'Spy that came in from the cold', belted mac. Looked on the internet found a pattern, my wife is very handy at pattern cutting and clothes and stuff, so we kind of trialled it out, cut it into a heavy weight canvas..”
Solder on the seams?
“Yeah. Technically it was effing difficult to put together. It doesn't behave like cloth, you can't pre stitch it and then dress the mannequin. I had to build it literally on the mannequin, so the pattern had to be heavily adapted, to like you know, how do you make the sleeve? You can't just make a whole sleeve you have to sort of build it..and trying to solder on a vertical surface when the solder always just wants to run, run away from you”
I hadn't thought of that
“ I got better at the solder come the end but..to start with ..bloody hell”
Rhizome Artists Collective – All At Sea
BELOW: 'All at Sea' Plymouth Art Weekender 2020
Can you tell me a little about the work?
“Day one was about abundance in nature, so all these bright colours and forms. Day two was, destruction and pollution, what man has done in the world, and today has been about hope and rejuvenation, but we have still got the plastic. We have got over 800 milk bottles that we have used to make these ammonites, the fossils of our era. So it is all to do with the environment, plastic pollution, and we have been inviting people on the terraces today to contribute words to what we printed...and then we have got the footprint challenge going as well, where people can draw around their footprint and post them on instagram hash tagging us. It's trying to get a bit of community involvement, which in these Covid times is quite hard. I am very keen to relate to Joe Public and not just an art audience, about the domestic plastic that we are using. You know it is just so easy to ignore it.”
What will happen to the piece when it is finished?
“ Well the swimming pool cover is going to be rolled up and probably used in another art work”
ABOVE: Judy Harington 'All at Sea' , part of Rhizome Artists Collective Plymouth 2020
Who are in the collective?
“ There are 12 of us all together and 11 of us have been involved in this project. 11 of us collaborated with , and we have been on a rota system coming in, but we have been discussing it on Zoom meetings for the last three months working out exactly what we were going to do”
As a collective at Rhizone are you made up of artists with different disciplines?
“ Yes. We all have different interests and some sort of qualification in art. A lot of us were mature students, so three of us graduated as mature students from Plymouth College of Art. We are all local and we have got a studio and HQ in Union street. It is all very much based here in Plymouth.
Sefryn Penrose, 37 Looe Street - 'Episodes in two flats and an office'
ABOVE: Artefacts from 37 Looe Street's 'Episodes in two flats and an office' exhibition
So am I right to say that you are from Bristol?
“No my partner is from Bristol, and we got the building about a year and a half ago. It was all a bit of serendipity. We were looking for somewhere that had a space that we could.. have art residencies or writing residencies and so on, and then we saw this and thought 'This is perfect'. So yes the gallery downstairs, hopefully we will have rolling exhibitions down there, and then this space is our space, but we were thinking we would have either kind of hot desks or studio space up here as well, and workshops and meetings and so on. That is the basic plan, bring it back to life”
So were all these artefacts found on site?
“ Yes because we had to put in new plumbing and new electrics, So we have had the floors up a lot and those are all things from under the floor. So we thought we would put a few of them out, and invite people to send us messages on postcards that we can put back under the floor, so that the next people that renovate have something to find. It has been a bit of adventure trying to figure out how the whole building fits together, and how it is still standing to be honest, hundreds of years of bodge.”
ABOVE: 37 Looe Street
It is a very old street, how much did you know about the history of the street before moving here? Did you know about the Minerva and the arts centre?
“ Yes we knew people that had been involved in the arts centre before and I love the street. I love it. My grandfather was from Plymouth and I knew the city quite well, a kind of coming home, and my Mum lives here so I have got a family connection and I played for Argyle back in the day.”
Oh Wow when was that?
“About the year 2000”
What position did you play?
“Either centre back or left back “
So do you usually make installations, site specific stuff or?
“ We have been basically rebuilding the place since we moved here. My partner does film and I am actually an archaeologist/heritage person, that is my background, and that is my work, but I draw.”
Did you just retire from football?
“ I got quite badly injured in my ankle, so I kept on playing but I just couldn't do it after a while and then I had an operation that made it worse. I have started swimming instead. I did the breakwater swim this morning.”
Wow congratulations to you, that must have been cold
ABOVE: GLMC 'In Extremis' a large fabric wall hanging at Ocean Studios in Plymouth
Here is to next year, and another weekend of recognising, celebrating and indulging the senses in three days of art and creativity, that speaks to Plymouth and all that visit her over the duration.
If you would like to book me to capture your opening night or other art events, you can contact me HERE
You can find more Plymouth Art Weekender photographs in the facebook gallery here