Initially I was curious about the relevance of collaboration to my singular and slightly isolated way of making. Through a masterclass with Hilde de Deckers in the early stages of HS3 (images attached) we were all encouraged to broadly explore what collaboration means both individually and as a group and in what form these ideas might express themselves in relation to our collaborative show at Objectspace and with The Dialogue Collective group. (Definitely needed a drink after exhibiting ourselves in a very public performance where we used our bodies as the jewellery, then invited the public to join in).
I listened to sculptor Frances Upritchard speak at City Gallery and thought about her response to the question Why do you collaborate so often? Her reply encompassed the idea that various family members and mentors had taught her many crafting skills, knitting, sewing etc as a child and for her it has continued to feel natural in adulthood to learn and make alongside others. It was a simple and honest response and in thinking about collaboration in this broader sense – rather than tying it to the literal ‘two people creating one object’, I realised that I do collaborate often but it’s less visible when there’s no object produced. Lining this up with one of my goals for HS3, I thought about collaborating with others who have different skills to mine to produce a catalogue reflecting and giving context to my work and ideas.