Recently the notion of studio space has captured my attention.
Over the last few months I have had the opportunity to visit many artists in their studios. These are often private, intimate and highly personalised spaces and it has been a privilege to be invited in. Studios can be lavish or simple, quite and meditative. Some are simply corners of rooms and others are loud, energetic spaces, busy, sometimes cluttered with little attention to house keeping.
The focus always, of course, is on the making of art. And the space without exception reflects the personality and energy of the artist.
Originally my work space started out as a two meter square corner of my bedroom. Slowly the space has grown, though not extravagantly, and I have always worked from home encroaching more and more on family spaces as time goes by.
Though I have often envied artists who work in a large warehouse or shared studio space, in many ways working from home has enabled me to manage my various identities more easily, changing from artist, to mother, taxi driver to reluctant cook at the drop of a hat.
But now I have space! I received the keys for an old Victorian barn. It is 100 years old and grubby with car oil and neglect, but it is large and it is all mine. It is also only a 3min walk away. With lots of TLC and the help of contractors of all sorts the space is transforming into something magical and my life and work is about to undergo a seismic shift.
And all just in time. At the end of July the valley in which I live in will be celebrating these places of making through an event called Solo Studios: Intimate Art Encounters. Over a dozen artists in our quiet country villages will be opening their studios to visitors for a weekend. It is a rare opportunity to visit artists in their work spaces, to see how they engage with their art making practices and to talk to them personally.
For those that will be visiting during Solo Studios I look forward to welcoming you to my new space.
Please note that pre-booking is essential for Solo Studios: www.solostudios.co.za