Gary Wood. Blog. 16/8/17
I am currently making a new body of work for our forthcoming
exhibition, Torso, which can be seen at One Two Five Gallery in
Abbey Green in Bath between 7th September and 1st October.
This latest work aims to capture associations made with the human form as a contemplative presence and also to reveal subtle qualities of surface and shape, which suggest movement in stillness and a sense of quiet vitality. A strong source of inspiration for these works is a keen interest in contemporary dance and in particular the work of the esteemed German choreographer, the late Pina Bausch.
I am dedicating this exhibition to the memory of our dear friend Ian Wilson, who died recently. Ian was a writer who championed the work of many artists and craftspeople for many years, in specialist art and craft publications. I first met Ian at The Bath Art Fair over twenty years ago, where I was exhibiting and selling my work. He bought one of my bowls and since that time a very close friendship developed between us and over the years he acquired several more pieces of my work. He had a particular interest in textiles and ceramics.
When Ian was writing a piece about you, what he loved to do rather than a studio visit and a formal interview, was to invite you to a delicious lunch which he would prepare and serve, combined with conversation including his penetrating curiosity about details of your work. He would make hand-written notes and the conversation was always relaxed and would often meander in different directions about all sorts of subjects. These working lunches were great fun because Ian had a wonderful sense of humour, so it was never really like work, but purposeful and when the finished article finally appeared in print, his perspective on what you were aiming to do had the capacity to make you reflect on your practice. His keen eye for detail and objectivity was invaluable in helping to remove any trace of ego or self-consciousness which might otherwise ambush your own appraisal of the work in hand and often helped to germinate a fresh approach to new ideas for the future. When I first made some very tentative torso maquettes a couple of years ago, Ian was the first person to enthuse about their potential. His very generous spirit has been with me during the making of the work for this show. I miss him very much and will always treasure the memory of our times together.