Thursday, 28 January 2010


Last Friday saw the culmination of the 4Wards Lighting project in Blackpool with a celebratory 'Light Night'. The Mayor introduced the project to pupils, parents and the public at St John's C of E Primary School. The children then took their beautiful lanterns on a procession to see the shop window in which I had installed 'Jewels'. It was lovely to see the reaction of the children, who had played a role in collecting and sorting the plastic into colours. They were so enthusiastic to see the pieces shining in the dark foggy air. Often my own enthusiasm for the work is reignited by the reaction of others. When you have worked closely on a piece for months it becomes very difficult to really 'see' it with fresh eyes. There had been a few hitches with using an empty shop unit as an exhibition space as this hadn't been attempted in Blackpool before. When it all came together I felt proud that the 'Jewels', as a product of many hands at New Directions, Back on Track and Street Life was being celebrated for others to see.
I was interviewed for BBC Radio Lancashire! Quite scary for a softly spoken artist but I hopefully managed to get across the idea of the project and the need to light up a corner of Blackpool.
The trail then proceeded to Solaris where Jessica Lloyd-Jones had installed an impressive light box sculpture illuminated by a bicycle. On to Bispham High School where Ruth Tyson-Jones had created a dance performance within illuminated, inflatable pods followed by Mark Parry's light boxes in Claremont. All of the works will be exhibited in FY Creatives from the beginning of February.

Tuesday, 12 January 2010

4Wards Light Night

Almost there with the Blackpool project, the pieces are stitched up ready for installation and illumination. The wonderful people from the arts service have organised the 4Wards Light Night, a celebration of all four projects and the fantastic people that have contributed.

At 4pm on Friday 22nd January, the Mayor and Mayoress will open the event at St John’s C of E High School when staff, pupils and visitors are invited to take part in a lantern parade from the school via Caunce Street to the display at 59 Cookson Street to view the work. From there buses will take people to see the artworks by Jessica Lloyd Jones, Mark Parry and Ruth Tyson Jones and the community groups they have worked with. All are welcome! Click here for more information.

Tuesday, 5 January 2010

Man-eating Sculpture!

An very belated update on the Blackpool Four Wards Lighting project! Before Christmas I was working with several lovely community groups from the Talbot area of Blackpool. Each group member worked on a hexagonal patch, threading and embellishing it with bright plastic bits and bobs, with a view to creating a big 3D patchwork sculpture. I was amazed at how people personalized their own little patch with thoughtful stitches and carefully selected objects.

My task now is compile all this hard work into a complete sculpture which will be exhibited in an empty shop window, illuminated with the help of the Blackpool Illuminations team.
Today I thought I'd experiment with the idea of sculpture as body adornment, by becoming literally consumed by it! I think I look a bit like a very psychedelic tortoise.