This project began in Panama in 2018 when I was booked as part of a circus troupe to perform at the Tribal gathering festival. It was a 3 week event so I took my glue gun along thinking to work with natural materials like driftwood etc instead of my usual recycled waste. The festival site was beautiful, a stunning paradise indeed, it was only when I went for a walk down the coast to a less populated area I was horrified to discover Paradise was knee deep in literally tonnes of sea plastic, miles and miles of it.
The following year the project expanded into more of a performance / installation piece as well as a gallery. In 2020 I was joined by a Spanish Artist Maitane Berrozpe to expand things even further and develop ideas that could form the basis of an international campaign. We aim to bring communities together around the issue of sea plastic pollution through collaboration, activism and play. We offer a variety of activity including collaborative projects, workshops and residencies with a focus on visibility, participation, networking and fund raising. To confront and transform this global problem we look for creative solutions, working from the ground up to enable and empower local communities most seriously affected as well as encouraging businesses, corporations and government agencies contributing to the creation of this crisis to take responsibility as well as action.
We have begun work on a documentary film project to raise further awareness and help launch an annual auction of sea plastic artworks that can raise funds for small groups and grass roots organisations working on the front lines of this global crisis.
Insta – #plastikparadiso Fb –
This was the first collection of work I developed in a process of self discovery and affirmation during quite a dark time in my journey, I have always collected broken things and found objects, starting of with beach combing the shores with my Grandma as a young boy. This collection was created from a huge stockpile of such tat I had accumulated over 10 years of shows and situations in Bristol. I had entered into therapy and as is often the way Im told my life had promptly kind of fallen to pieces around me as I opened the pandoras box of shadows and trauma that has been stowed away deep in my psyche for nearly 50 years.
Revisiting trauma is never an easy process and can be incredibly counter productive if you don’t have the support of a professional, you also realise how destructive it can become if left unaddressed as it has a tendency to rear its ugly head in so much of your life with out you realising. It was in a moment of real darkness I found myself sitting in the previously undiscovered arched chamber that would become my studio, staring at the huge pile of broken things I had accumulated, torn between torching the lot of it or …….. actually doing something with it!
The choice to use it or lose it was empowering, choosing to use it, I started making stuff, up until then I had only made a few small pieces, but it became part of the therapy, every lost moment I felt myself adrift I would go to the studio and make something. A lot of the pieces are by nature of this quite dark, a psycho analysts nightmare was one reviewers comment! But I find them quite endearing somehow, the process of making them and showing them was also quite cathartic.
Recent Commissions have included The House of Extinction for Greenpeace at Glastonbury festival and a series of pieces for Boomtown’s Area 404 venue in Bristol, made in Collaboration with Maitane Berrozpe.
Bespoke pieces themed to the style and preference of the recipient can also be commissioned, these can be selected from the various forms created across the range of work, eg altars, goddesses, mermaids, wall mounted , free standing etc and also in themes suited to the person the gift is for eg music, circus, zodiac, animal, nature etc. These can be created from my treasure trove of collected found objects or also incorporate objects and items from the recipient.
Everyone has that random drawer of interesting bits and pieces to do something with one day, sticks and stones, random finds, old buttons and photographs, trinkets and tat, often these artefacts are collected from special moments or favourite places to remind us of these times and people, but remain in the shadows of some box or cupboard, you can give me these things also to incorporate onto your piece so they can be celebrated and seen for the sacred objects they are! Here also are some examples of bespoke commissions.