My work is about following each piece and being intuitively
open to an unspoken dialogue that spans a breath of choices and unknown exit
points. My interest in memory is the makings of the complexities of a souvenir.
The moments captured with an object that creates a personal language. For me
being an artist is an act of prosaic looking that feeds
making for heterogeneous artefacts that confront
the real world, curated by movement of life that allows the work to be
witnessed in challenging surroundings. I see my work as an anthology of
objects, each being a unique incomplete tangible question that collects
personal provenance. What stimulates my work and research is the ongoing amassments
of stuff I collect and own. Obsessions happen without acknowledgement and my
inventory shows no boundaries to objects, just an attraction that I find it
hard to explain other than: we find each-other.

Friday, 31 March 2017

Inherited Absents

Working with ceramics for over ten years has allowed me to develop a language that I consider is preserved in the layering of the making process. I work a lot of the time with repetition and the direct involvement of creating my amassments becomes an important translation to the work. I capture traces of making in the work that purposefully locks in a separation from my body through fingerprints and choreographed actions of movement. This in turn gives the objects I make an inherited yearning to the body both by distant trace and the behaviour of the symbolism presented.

Inherited Absents (2016-17) is a piece that presents a collection of numbered hand built porcelain wishbones. Each completely different and document the change in making from different sittings of creation. I intend this body of work to be ongoing and constantly renewed with the idealised destiny that each wishbone is activated between two people. Dipped in wax offers both a visual reading of the work to be more tactile, and in touch to offer a temporary feel of comfort and safety. Presented in a vintage free standing bird cage to condition the experience of looking at something kept and to be communicated with through bars of proscribed habitat. Ideas for the work extrapolate from commentary on the propaganda of climate change and how this has become a house hold terminology that is controlled by the edited agendas of the leaders of the world. I want the work to offer a very human centred involvement, a vehicle of connection and a talisman for a meaningful wish.

Sunday, 26 February 2017

Collisions in silence: breaking habits through making


I have cultivated a practice that survives by direction best described as Artist as Collector. My inventory of found objects amass no limitations or hierarchies and grow with nuance’s that most of the time go unnoticed. The physical act of finding has an important marriage to realisations of circumstances. This is shown and effected by me as the finder and the complexities of being human in the mundanity of living manifesting in results of acquisitions, jewelled with geography; where I am at a given moment and what is the offering to harvest.

The stuff I collect comes from many evolved sources, some are free and been crowned as junk or something lost, abandoned or left behind (think of the glut of broken umbrellas with a stern wind). Some are acquired by paying for them, favourite haunts are car-boot sales and second hand shops. This has been inbuilt into my behaviour since being a child, being given a few coins to hunt out my chosen finds at low financial cost. I have even been a speaker and independently published zines for hints and tips of making the most out of finding at these opportunities. I relish the rush of looking to find something often I never knew I needed, I live and feed this compulsion as a means to make my work.

Having stuff as ingredients and materials to work with is a habit to which has formed over the years. I think each readymade is enchanted with its own charge through unique memories that overpower the realisation of the object and its visual reading. This can obviously change simply by something as slight as changing the context to which an existing object is viewed. A myriad of systems and a margin-less ethos to making, results with my finds becoming something other than a prophesy as a sum mirrored by each items provenance. A new language is created through a conglomerate of ideas and working methodologies given rest bite through a constant making or remaking. Gemstones get glued to cardboard then folded and hammered, signed photographs reduced to confetti and contained, plastic flowers taken out of graveyard bins are fabricated with heirlooms dipped in paint. My work long ditched gravities to make things that are instantly attractive by means of conventional decorative or ornamental viewpoints. This becomes humorous if you think of majority of the original states of the objects I alter are knick-knacks or souvenirs bearing witness to events, or simulating prescribed visual niceness to put on display.

I see my work as an anthology of objects echoing notions of still lives and self-portraits in isolated artefacts that awaken miscellaneous withdrawals. Recovering something familiar that adopts an attitude to yearnings of incompletion and intimacy of touch is an absence I abruptly leave in my work, for space for personal prediction to fill.



Moons, Masks



Paper, aluminium, shoe laces



That feeling when you need to stop ignoring something, confront it, and let it go. To translate crudely Kill it to change its current form. I started with the physicality of using my body and having a death mask taken. The endurance of this procedure seemed to fit more than initially planned. The time under the cast, in the cold, the dark and the silence with myself gave me the opportunity to re-prepare for welcoming the light (having the cast removed). This was a considered preparation and the death mask itself a totem of a remedy distilled in a moment of my own face. Importance now lied in what do I do with its potency of the object? Dilute it!

I took casts of the cast each taking part of the rooted purpose with it. An involvement of making that made my hands draw the contours and voids of my face over and over again to reveal a new offering of a simple mask that will restrict the living acts of the face if worn.   

In plain sight I couldn’t recognise myself, I saw my deceased Farther. Something distant that sits in my blood has been surfaced in this work.


Tuesday, 15 November 2016

'The Echo as Residue' Nexus Manchester

Mark Mcleish
The Echo as Residue
Mixed Media 2016
This installation brings together new work made specially for this space. I have been playfully curious recently of how archive material can provide evidence for traces left by the birth of other pieces of work. The selection process for the objects chosen in Beads were harvested from my studio space and floor preventing the destination to the rubbish bin and separating them individually from an amassment. These represent touchpoints of physical connections and conversations that would be possibly discarded and become ghosts within an echo of relationships that exist by different means.
Numb Points are solid casts taken from money thimbles. Filling the void in the making process became a tangible voice for there is nothing to count anymore, apart from these stones. Each embody differences that are forced by speed and repetition in the production of killing the wearable and memorialising assigned ideas to the original object.
Removing the Veil is a shifting body of work dependent on space. Each doll contains amounts of my hair from the past ten years. Thinking and challenging the idea of just how an object can become wearable is something I question a lot. These suspended revisions show how my work can live away from the body and represent intimate fragmented associations between body and objects.
Beads: 2016, found objects and plastic
Numb Points: 2016, British Porcelain
Removing the Veil: 2016, textile, human hair, porcelain, silk, hair nets


Ingredients for Cooperation, name badge

New Generation: Design For Living. Conference Manchester October 2016


my MA show, Jewellery and Objects 'Room For You'

Wednesday, 30 March 2016

working drawings

So, a few people have contacted me asking about drawing. How important is it to my making? How do I use it within my practice? I have chosen very resent drawings to illustrate this. I tend not to overthink the act of drawing and use it to document thinking. My mark-making ranges from very quick lines to a build-up of collage surfaces. I add text a lot as instruction and annotation of material. I see my drawings as key points of developments as a process of planning thoughts and material investigations. I do not limit myself to a type of media and papers and surfaces are important for the translation of ideas. I usually work on loose pages so I can pin them in my work space then collect them to form a sketchbook.


quick drawings for using glass
material compositions and textures


surface, form and colour
pin ideas