Joya: arte + ecología
Joya: arte + ecología is an arts organisation based at Cortijada Los Gázquez in the heart of the Parque Natural Sierra María Los Vélez in the north of the Provincia de Almería, Andalucía. The guiding principle behind the activities of the organisation is to facilitate, through production and collaboration, art and artists whose work manifests a discourse with the environment and sustainability.
I was fortunate enough to be selected to go to Andalucia in Spring 2012 as part of a small group residency at Aberystwyth University. Lead by artist Miranda Whall, we spent a week producing a variety of work in response to the environment. Being an eco-friendly household, it became as much about living for our work as about working for our living, collecting firewood, learning and responding to a landscape that has been inhabited by humans for thousands of years in a region scattered with various cultures and history.
My work took me in a totally different direction to anything before. Inspired by the work of an artist in residence at Aberystwyth art centre Claire Wilson, and by other such artists (Richard Diebenkorn)- I threw away my previous reliant upon figuration to react to the surroundings in a fresh and original fashion. On watercolour paper- I limited my self to only a small brush with ink and locally sourced soil pigment that could be grounded down to form paint (although we lacked the binder required to make paint! We tried egg yolk but it failed..) These works although not so much at the time, open my eyes to another way of working and replying to my surroundings.
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