'BEING IN THE STUDIO WITH HACKNEY DOWNS'
This is Amanda Welch's account of her Hackney Downs project, which she has been working on for the last three years or so. The book is out now, and she writes:
The open-ended process of making memory drawings recording my frequent bicycle trips across Hackney Downs was the starting point for the Hackney Downs work. The relationship between the drawings and the paintings and constructions which followed was not a straightforward one. The drawings were memory jottings. They were not ideas for paintings. At first every attempt to make ‘art‘ out of the drawings seemed a betrayal of their nature. Eventually I did find a way of working directly which, instead of developing ideas from the drawings, in a sense paralleled their ad hoc, ‘non art‘ method of construction. I have tried to tell the story of this journey in my book. The book could be said to be its concluding work.
'It was really strange, when I first went through that door into her studio, I felt a bit dismayed – at first sight everything looked amateurish and self-indulgent, but then, as soon as I started looking around and she started talking about the work it became so witty and engaging and stylistically quite sophisticated but in a very unpretentious way. She really does have a feeling for paint and materials and a way of including text and such a great sense of humour . . . So much stuff I see now seems to bear no relation to how people live their lives or what really matters, but Amanda seems to have caught it in the most natural way.'
More information on Amanda Welch's website: www.amandajanewelch.com
62 pages 25cm x 20cm with 90 full-colour illustrations. £12.50 + £2.35 p&p. Available from The Many Press. Enquiries to johnhopewelch AT yahoo.co.uk