My on-line diary began in the 1990's from my studio in the North of England. After a lapse of ten years, I resumed posting from my present studio on the Caribbean island of Dominica.

From the far beginning, the intention has been to give an insight into my working methods, and to share the triumphs, trials and tribulations of work-in-progress.

My diary pages are followed by thousands of artists, art students and art lovers in over 50 countries.

Monday, February 21, 2011

Dominoes and disadvantaged youths…

Sixteen years ago, I relocated my studio from the Caribbean to England.  After twenty years of living on a small island, I looked forward to being in the company of scores of creative artists and I naively thought that my studio - a cavernous listed historical building - if not my work, might be eligible for support from The Arts Council.  Dream on!

I found very little in the way of interaction with fellow artists, most seemed to operate as jealously guarded secret societies.  As for The Arts Council, they could only offer support if, through my work, I could rescue disadvantaged youths.  As for my studio, they could help fund the restoration if I shared the space with local Job Centre.   

Back to the Caribbean and I find that little has changed in terms of encouragement in the creative arts.  Education Authorities perceive their role to be that of nurturing potential doctors, lawyers and accountants, not little Vincent Van Goghs.    Art they deem to be a hobby, a bit like stamp collecting and dominoes. 

Why have I started this critical discourse at the end of a tiring day?  What I meant to get around to say, is simply that art survives regardless.  A little bit like making love, it has a way of happening without money or much schooling.  The key ingredient is passion.

The sketch is of Grand Bay, Dominica.  It represents a few cents worth of materials but a great and overwhelming love of my subject.

1 comment:

  1. I would think that you would have to have a great deal of love for art to switch from design engineering to artist with a young family to support. It's a shame that England didn't offer more is the way of support and encouragement, but overall, it's a lot warmer in Dominica!

    Unfortunately, in the current economic climate and with the current Conservative dominated government, the lot of UK art based projects is not going to improve. Quite the opposite!