Walking...such a simple pleasure ...capturing a childlike sense of wonder...it can transform people's lives.
I am a walking artist, a hunter/gatherer of people's stories, place, memories, objects - I call these my finders/keepers. I have always loved the simple pleasure of walking; it frees the mind, invigorates the body and makes us smile. I have seen the benefits and pleasure it brings to the communities I work with. In 2014, I was awarded an artist residency with The Young Gallery in Salisbury and I chose to use a walking stick collection from the John Creasey Museum - the curator Peter Riley allowed me to take these sticks on tour into communities, they were a conduit for creativity and connecting. Haptic discovery, exploring urban/rural areas, slowing down, deep looking, having fun, playing, the happy accident, reimagining the gallery space are all essential components of my practice. The message I share is wander wondering and I blog this on my website...simple stories for all to share, inspire, seed. In May-June 2015, an exhibition WONDERMENT - walklines at the Young Gallery, Salisbury documents my journey. I have captured wonder moments from workshops and meeting people in a sound cabinet, installations, artworks, pop up cabins of curiosity where sharing and reciprocal engagement were key, encouraging groups to feel they could facilitate and set up walking initiatives. Embedding self belief, encouraging a different mode of engagement can give individuals a voice. It helps build inclusive communities and we can leave our mark, passing it on... is that mark. The memory of shared experience, place, transformation and cognitive discovery. This is a very powerful combination and one where all ages, diverse backgrounds can be involved, that is the legacy here, walking can set that seed, inspiring ground up growth that is sustainable and preserves our spirit.