17th-29th November – ‘The Grange Gallery’ Rottingdean Brighton
I was recently asked how long it took to complete a painting; my answer was “59 years”
This might seem flippant but what appears on the canvas is a culmination of how I’ve experienced the world so far, made manifest as part calligraphic ‘action painting’ part ‘colour field’.
The birth of a painting happens as a slow formulation of an image clarified in my minds eye. Before I start a day’s work I sit in meditation to empty my head to allow some spaciousness. I prepare the support from the beginning, assembling the frame and meticulously stretching the linen, this is a vital part of the process. Then over a series of days I will apply several layers of paint to form a heart or ground layers. I then apply the final motif or icon.
About the show.
We are mesmerized with our phones, ipads and widescreen TVs. I see that we are trapped in devices. Where are we living our lives, how is it affecting our minds or our wellbeing?
In this show I offer an antithesis to the intense watching, commenting and engaging. What you will see is simple abstractions devoid of any ‘real ‘ meaning, images that require no dialogue or theory.
I am asking the viewer to sit or stay for a while, switch off and enjoy emptiness of the ‘ZEN TV’
I have been blessed to be able to tattoo for the last 30 years. I would like to thank every person that has allowed me to mark his or her skin. I would like to thank the tattoo community for their love and criticism without which I would not have been able to grow as a human being.
From the 28 February 2017 I will stop tattooing, some of you will be saying thank fuck for that it’s about time too. This is a heads up for people that have ongoing work that needs finishing and for those of you that may want a piece by me before I quit.
For appointments please contact me via Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
Thank you xxx
P.S My old shop sign painted by Dave Senior in 2002 , I met him at art college way back in 1973, He’s an old school diamond…, they don’t make them like him any more.
A catchphrase that’s been bugging me for while is ‘Mindfulness’ .
At first I thought what a wonderful thing that meditation techniques are being used and integrated into the daily lives of busy modern world people.
But no ,wait a minute , what we are getting is a sort of panacea for our non-thinking baby egos, a commercialised watered down version of practises that have been passed down from guru to student for centuries. I’m not in favour of any form of hierarchy, however I do respect knowledge that has been passed on by experienced practitioners, people that have investigated the truth of being human. This practice is valuable and worthy of true esteem but what we are being ‘sold’ is what others have labelled “Mc Mindfulness ” We have all seen the ads that tell of vast improvements in cognition, physical and mental health and how mindfulness meditation is being used in schools, prisons and the workplace etc but what is being presented is a course akin to selling a gym membership.
The bottom line is that most of the ‘courses’ I’ve seen, are being run by persons with little or no real experience or by wannabe gurus .The blind leading the blind, so to say. It shouldn’t really annoy me should it ? It’s just another aspect of the mind playing games, getting on my high horse of ‘my practice is better than yours’. It ends up looking like a pompous pissing contest. I should look on the positive that even if a few people get into a deeper practice and investigate more, then that’s a good move isn’t it?
I my my short lifetime I have seen a many religions/philosophies being latched onto and usurped for one reason or another but mainly for power or monetary gain. More recently it was ‘hip’ to be into the Kabbalah, before that it was Nichiren Buddhism and TM …etc . I’m not knocking the genuine practitioners of these paths but the commercialism that has used the philosophy for their own gain. However there is a counter argument that many people have benefited from self help books and these have been a trigger for deeper development. But,…there are BIG profits.
People like to follow celebrities and I am also guilty. As a teenager at art college in the early 7os I was exposed to a variety of philosophies, I read Ginsburg, Kerouac etc and having felt an affinity with David Bowie’s leaning towards Buddhism it seemed to validate my path and enquiry. It was helpful to know that there was an alternative to what I had assumed to be true. But do celebrities know where they are going any more than we do, aren’t they just as vulnerable as we are ?
I wonder how long it will be before this commercial adaption of meditation is left by the wayside and a next philosophy emerges.
Lets hope its a return to the true meaning of LOVE .
Most times I examine my actions and motives and those of others. I try to fathom what is behind it all. Do we always see clearly the truth of the situation or do we engineer how we perceive reality to fit our egos wants and whims?
Our interactions with ‘our’ world , with each other – no matter how engaged we imagine ourselves to be , how intellectually evolved we believe we are…, could it be driven by a base animal instinct ?
I wondered the premise of the triune brain and if it had any bearing on our anger driven emotions, but it seems that another theory of how the brain has evolved in mammals has now debunked that theory. There is however a marketing movement that has the crocodile brainas its totem and how we are compelled to ‘believe the hype’…but that’s another avenue of debate.
The very basis of meditation is to learn to be alert and yet relaxed , to observe the oneness and the connection to every atom that pervades the universe. The end goal is to not act or react to anything in particular and to accept reality as it is.
How does this translate into the everyday world that we inhabit ? From my point of view it should manifest in being compassionate and understanding , a very difficult thing to achieve when those about you have no inclination towards the same goal. It’s a lot easier if one is living in a monastery or on retreat, but out there in the shopping mall or in the workplace it’s a different ball game.
Perhaps we were better beings as apes, with no aspirations to build and conquer, just sitting in the trees and being.