With the Asking Andover project coming to a conclusion over the next few weeks, I have begun to create my own artwork, as commissioned by Hampshire Cultural Trust. I will be also be drawing the final elements of the exhibition together over the next week or so, culminating in a Summer Celebration on Saturday 17th August.
For my own artwork, I wanted to draw on the memories that had been shared with me, and to combine these experiences with my own, by taking a walk across the town. On Thursday 11th of July I took a walk from the top of Andover to the bottom, starting at Anton Lakes and walking via the town centre (including Andover Museum and St Mary’s Church) to Ladies Walk.
I was moved by poetry created by Dan Hooks, that relates to the iron bridge at Ladies Walk, and by artwork made by one of the volunteers at the Museum about her dog and the times they spent together at Anton Lakes. Together with other memories that relate to the Museum’s past as a school, and weddings/christenings that have taken place at St Mary’s, my path took me from the site of one memory to the next.
I took with me 16 pages, printed with photographs of Andover, held in a white box, and as I walked I recorded my own experiences of the places that had been shared with me, adding hand-written text, rubbings and found materials, to create a collection of multi-layered Walking Pages.
I didn’t want my work to overshadow the other contributions, but to sit alongside them, and for the materials that I used to complement them. I was also keen to draw from my and others experiences of going behind the scenes at Chilcomb House, when we looks through drawers, unwrapped packages and discovered all kinds of treasures.
This Saturday (20th July) I’ll be running the first of three Summer Workshops for local families. For this first one we will be making home shaped containers for our memories, working with a range of recycled and art materials. You can find out more about these Summer Workshops and how to book here.
Next week I will add the objects that we chose to join our exhibition, from the central stores at Chilcomb, together with my artwork and other objects and photographs lent by the public. This final iteration of the Asking Andover exhibition will then be open for the whole of August, before closing at the beginning of September.