Friday, May 08, 2009
Fragments Of Myself In A Box
I've plumbed a whole new level of tiredness this week: to bed after midnight and awake well before dawn for five days straight. Every hour in between has been consumed with work, other than a few minutes grabbed here and there for a coffee or a sandwich as I log into email (and, yes, Twitter), or make essential phone calls to collectors, suppliers and the young assistant grinding through a weekend shift at my other studio. The poor kid is re-organising what I refer to, a little grandly, as my 'archives' – lots of battered foolscap file boxes filled with sketches, photographic negatives, catalogues, press cuttings and keepsakes – annotating and dating the printed materials and wrapping the artwork in acid-free paper and reboxing it by year. There' a hell of a lot more of it all than I'd imagined, twelve years of output on paper, fabric, VHS tape, 35mm negatives and Polaroid SX70 and 600 prints, as well as a few dolls and small, fragile sculptures.There's not much that's personal, such as letters or family snapshots. They were always the first things I got rid of when I was moving from one place to another, even as a child. I regret it now. It's too easy to forget who you were once, when and where. Now I'm much stricter about keeping track. I even allow sentimentality to seep into the choice of pictures I pin on the cork-board in my office or tape to the edge of one of the bookshelves in my bedroom. The black and white photograph (above) is one I found today. I was a teenager, tall and gangly. No tattoos but already some scar tissue.