It’s going to happen! After some bright ideas, imaginings and many discussions its all systems go. 1st May – 31st July I will be artist in residency with Chris Cooper at Kentish Town Health Centre through the Free Space Gallery based at the Centre. The ball started rolling some years ago on this after a discussion at a show I had curated at the Queen Crescent Surgery. The pace changed but ball didnt stop rolling and here we are.
I work with many artists with mental disabilities who often find it hard to negotiate the complexities of the art world. It is challenging out there at the best of times. Kentish Town Health Centre offer a space annually for an artist to be resident at the James Wigg Practice – why not have an artist working with Action Space, who support the development of artists with learning disabilities in a professional studio environment, be an artist in resident at KTHC? The original idea was for me to mentor a young artist working with Action Space to be the resident artist, but this developed in a collaborative project for the residency.
I will be working with Chris, who is a young and exciting artist who has worked with a number of mediums including painting, sculpture, digital imagery and has received an Achievement Award from the Jack Petchy Foundation for his writing. Chris is Autistic and is challenged by high levels of anxiety.
We do not know what will come out of this collaboration yet. As with many creative endeavours and ideas it is the process that is as enlightening as the product. We plan to use our art as a means of communicating between ourselves and to the visitors and staff of the centre. It will be an intense 3 month and a huge learning curve for us both. It is an exciting opportunity and I am looking forward to having a new and different space to work in with new ideas and materials to experiment with.
Here’s to a full few months.