December 11, 2014

8.30 am.  I set up for the final Art/Sound lecture. 9.00 am. It feels as though we’ve come to the end of a long journey. The arc of the module is complete. There was an acceptable attendance, given that this is the penultimate day of term.  10.00 am. I held an initial consultation with a PhD inquirer. 10.45 am. My final walk for the semester to the Old College to attend to third year tutorials. The weather is conspicuous today:


Martin’s studio space is filled with his absence:


1.30 pm. Lunch in the Quad. Mr Ellis is now partially occluded by the onset of Christmas. I was reminded of Daphne transforming into a laurel tree:


Some lessons and observations:

  • One must give a painting the opportunity to ‘speak’. Take time to cease from interrogating it. ‘Listen with your eyes’, as the song says.
  • Some of our intentions will require a lifetime to realise. Others can be achieved only in the middle distance of our careers. And yet others are attainable now or in the immediate future. It takes wisdom to discern which belongs to when.
  • It’s not the quantity of paintings produced that secures the reward but, rather, the intensity: the evidence of a consistent and energetic commitment to defining an intent and resolving problems with consummate craft and intelligence.
  • Progress is more logarithmic than linear: it does not proceed on a constant gradient but in leaps and bounds, and sometimes … not at all.
  • Just persevere.

Every student I encountered today has established a solid platform on which to build semester two work and, ultimately, their final show.  Granted, there’s much pruning, polishing, and producing to be undertaken over the vacation. But thus is it ever.

4.15 pm. The last homeward journey, for a while:


4.30 pm. Administrations of various kinds. Although, as I was informed yesterday, there’s no such thing as administration anymore. Now, it’s called ‘leadership’. Well, I’ve got a pile of leadership to shift this evening. 6.30 pm.  ‘Leadership opportunities’ come with almost every email I receive. For the remainder of the evening I drilled to the bottom of my inbox and dealt with those dregs from which mortal flesh shies away — the correspondence that requires either a dull or difficult or an unusually diplomatic response.

10.30 pm. An early night in readiness for the morning.



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