As well as teaching at Swansea College of Art I’m also fortunate enough to be studying for my MA here at Wales’ oldest art school. As part of this endeavour I’m broadening my horizons in terms of the things I look at, and the things I create. That’s because, at the end of the day, ideas don’t just inhabit the world of advertising, ideas are an essential ingredient of all visual culture, and this is what interests me.
Not wishing to take on a Lilliputian subject, my studies are currently directed towards portraiture, identity and the human form. As you can imagine there’s a lot to learn, and that’s what I’m enjoying doing. Earlier this year my search landed me at the mouth of the Mersey, more specifically the site of Antony Gormley’s monumental work of art, Another Place.
Made up of 100 cast iron sculptures these static cadavers face the constantly turning tides and will most likely continue to do so for eternity. At the same time our transient lives pass them by, as if with some sort of human superiority. Their static, stoic presence emphasises our vulnerable, mortal existence. As this fragile relationship unfolds, the passing of time is marked by the ebb and flow of the tide, and everything is witnessed by the magnificent sky.
Now I’m not sure if this was Gormley’s intention, but it’s what struck a chord with me so I’ve made a film to reflect this thought. If you ever find yourself near Liverpool try and make some time to experience their emotive power on Crosby Beach. It was freezing on the day so afterwards you may also want to sample a bowl of scouse. Bon appétit.