mobile navigation
Blog - Alan Hopwood

The more you try to erase me the more I will appear

FacebookTwitter

 

A digitised image of shadows against shops on a high street

The more you try to erase me the more I will appear. Image © Alan Hopwood

My apologies for the long period between blogs, (for anyone out there taking notice!) but I have had a long period of being incapacitated.

Spending days and even weeks in isolation and darkness, in pain and not sleeping can be very challenging for your mental health. One way that I deal with this, besides the loving support from my family, is to explore these feelings through my artwork.

The degenerative nature of my disability, and these periods of dark isolation in contrast to those beautiful days where I can get out and enjoy life, drive the conceptual content behind the way I make work.

I haven’t been able to get into my studio recently, but the image shown in this blog is something I have manipulated this week. It utilises photography; painting and digital processes to explore the patterns and colours that come from the degradation of image. This aesthetic is something that has to be discovered, rather than planned, providing both positive and negative effects, much like my illness.

It is part of a series of work that I have titled Light in Dark Places, images that explore the ideas I have just mentioned, whilst also making references to the music I listen to when I am bed-bound or unwell. As I find it increasingly difficult to get to galleries, music has become my primary influence for both subject and process. The rich layering of sound, complementing the lyrical narrative and emotion of the music are things that I attempt to visualise.

The more you try to erase me the more I will appear” is a lyric from a Radiohead song, the image uses my own reflection/shadow to provide the shape within the image that is most visible and vibrant. Contrasting against the bleached, highlighted shapes that are created by the bright sky outside (behind me).

I effectively create a camera obscurer, either in a darkened room using light entering through the window, or by finding a dark enclosure in nature, such as woods, and using the light and colours of the day, shining in through the canopy, casting my shadow/silhouette onto a pre-selected artwork. This way, the work becomes a collective response of me; my artwork; the location I’m in and the specific light/colour and weather of that particular day. Making the work unique to that day, and unrepeatable.

This practice is specifically used for this series of work (Light in Dark Places) and hopefully the title of this series starts to make sense alongside how my disability affects me.

Leave a comment

avatar
  Subscribe  
Notify of

Researching accessible studio spaces and residencies at The Art House

On the 5th and 6th July, we went on our second research visit to The Art House Wakefield and stayed in their accessible flat. Although this organisation is not a learning-disabled art studio, the aim here was to look into their studio setups and their residency programme as they have accessible studio spaces and accessible ...

Shaping A Diverse Future / 16 July 2015

Hey everyone, howdedo? I'm pooped from another Immersed in 360 exhibition (running at Plymouth Uni until Friday) but cheered to have found a new political pin-up in the barnstorming form of Mhairi "halt the rollout of PIP in Scotland" Black who's maiden speech this week made me want to stand on my chair and cheer. Love her. Bleak ...