Sunday, 13 June 2010

Travels in West Africa by Mary Kingsley

This book was given to me to read by a neighbour of mine who obviously sees some links between me and Mary (sister to writer Charles Kingsley) in terms of my travels to Nigeria, and perhaps previously to Kenya. I may be a bit feisty at times, but l hope this is where the similarity ends!

The times when this was written reflects the Colonial era and so there is a lot to disagree with and she was obviously from quite a wealthy background. However there are some quaint stories in it which are fascinating and are somewhat reminiscent of my experiences in Africa which l am finding very amusing eg. the papaya story and how good for the digestion it is, etc. It is also interesting to read from a woman's point of view and has a lot of ethnographic information which may be useful/ l will read on.....

Richard Long

During Open Studios at Spike Island (Bristol) Richard Long came into my studio to look at my work, I of course was fumbling around with reading matter on my desk at the time and did not notice him. Anyway cutting a long story short (forgive the pun) we engaged in brief conversation about the work and he had thought the rocks l had cast were made out of chalk and he said he like them.....great! They are 'Herculite 2' (plaster) for the record!!

These are piled up on the floor in a shape that resembles a grave and is just one element of the installation l am making called 'Matter of Interpretation', based on my experiences in Nigeria recently.