October 17, 2016

8.55 am: Towards the Old College. The swollen incoming tide had washed seaweed and shale onto the promenade. The water in the children’s paddling pool was oddly placid against the turmoil of the sea behind it. The energy released as the waves beat against the walls and projections on the shoreline was invigorating and uplifting:

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9.00am: Today, I’m trying to engage with those MA Fine Art students whom I would ordinarily teach tomorrow and Wednesday; my eternal examining duties prevail this week. The abstract painters are already throwing caution to the wind in order to generate conditions for something new to enter into the work.

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11.30 am: No more takers. I headed back to the motherships, via Plas Grug Avenue (looking for all the world like one of those Parisienne boulevards beloved of the Impressionists), in a period of respite between what have been torrential showers (misnomer):

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12.00 pm: A postponed BA Fine Art and a rerouted MA Fine Art tutorial were next on the cards.

Following lunch, I headed for the Old College, once again, for another PhD Fine Art tutorial. This was followed by a further peregrination to the mothership to attend the Final PhD Fine Art tutorial of the day. The latter was a three-way tutorial between the student, their new second supervisor (from Earth Sciences), and me. The arrangement generated a fast-moving and clear-sighted discussion. A good deal was achieved in a short space of time. All in all, this has been a heartening day. Courage, tenacity, improvement, and vitality have been much in evidence.

Evening. The vicar came to dinner. 7.30 pm: Packing and an endless filling-in of forms — in order to prove that I’m not an illegal immigrant, it would seem — in readiness for tomorrow’s jaunt to Swansea.

Some principles and observations derived form today’s encounters:

  • The place from where an artwork derives may not necessarily to the same as the destination to which it’s heading.
  • Begin with gratitude.
  • The last thing you want is not have problems with your work. Coming up with solutions is the principal means by which we mature and move forward.
  • If you at first you don’t succeed. Try again. In all likelihood, the second attempt won’t fail so badly.
  • You don’t have to know what you’re doing in order to begin an artwork. You’ll discover that either in the process of making it or sometime after completion.

 

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