You Have To Dream
A Writing Event @ CMR
Saturday 25 Aug, 10-2pm
CMR held its first writing event, 'You Have To Dream', on Saturday 25th August from 10am to 2pm. It was facilitated by Caroline Palmer, a writer who is one of Cornwall Media Resource's Directors.
During this relaxed session, Caroline encouraged participants to be inspired by and write about the exhibits in the show, New Visions, in fiction, descriptively or critically.
You Have To Dream welcomed those with all levels of skill and experience, from professionals to those beginning to write. Musicians, song writers, actors and playwrights are also welcome to take part.
11 people attended, and these are some of the outcomes, with the original paintings and works that inspired the writing...
“I know what I like”
“I don’t know anything about art” he said “but I know what I like”….
a puppy and a kitten snuggle pink…
cottages, crinolines, a child in a hat…
a Japanese woman with a mirror in her hand…
Cornish harbours, a kingfisher, a blue faded Siamese cat…
baby otters, shire horses, an owl – and fairyland…
The cynic might say “What tat!”
but the artist might be saying “imagine this…
a musty house in a tired town
windows paint-sealed shut.
They sit too old and frail to ever leave.
But there’s a wall filled with dreams and memories.
Doze by the one bar electric fire and see….
the puppy’s nose shines damp, the kitten’s fur is soft
the dreaming cottage, once your home
surrounded by a garden full of flowers.
In your day Shires worked nobly on the farm
and children all believed in fairy land.”
Poem inspired by “Decency and Taste (you are what you perceive)" / installation by Duncan Hopkins
An Ode to 'A Treat For Luna'
From just amongst the stars
Your milky rays have guided
I dug before to bury
The Odes to death, blinded
By my visions of shrouded existence
And a path of foreseen sorrow
You never left my side
Beloved beams from globe of marble.
I took to heart my noble vow
To reach you with a gift bestowed,
A precious clustered orb for mate
To blush the beauty of your curved pale state.
To place the precious next to you
As like flowers for a maiden;
A hand I would stretch out to you
For your black arms have beckoned.
So I’m coming by your fairest light
The stairs are coiled, waiting
To put anew a spring in my step
All dancing with jewels glistening.
I now drill for treasures in battle dress
A knight encased in nutty shell
For only a shower of jellybeans blessed
Will do for a worshipped damsel’s carousel.
All the colours collect when bled,
From the shaded mortals of passionless taint
I placed around my unsheathed head
Adding the depth of adored pleasurement....
Once dusk has hold I blend on stairs of heartfelt fate
lost in the white of Luna’s shimmering paint.
in response to "A Treat For Luna" by Ros Bason
PERCHED NEXT TO A BOX OF CAMOMILE TEA
AND A BUNCH OF BANANAS
SITS MY HOUSE.
IT IS A STONE HOUSE.
A REAL STONE HOUSE.
IT’S SQUARE AND IT HAS A WINDOW.
SIMPLE AS A GARAGE BUT IT IS NOT A GARAGE.
I HAVE NO CAR
AND BESIDES THE DOOR IS TOO SMALL.
MY HOUSE IS VERY HEAVY BUT
THE REASON THAT I CANNOT PICK IT UP
IS BECAUSE IT IS A WORK OF ART.
Poem in response to 'the blue house carved in a stone',
by Janet McEwan
In the forest is a pile of twigs.
In the forest is a nest.
In the forest is a space.
The space in the forest should not be there.
As I walk past it shimmers.
It’s like a lens into a territory that I can never know.
The silence is more silent, more still, more concentrated
than any silence should ever be.
My friend tells me she found such a place,
while driving in her car.
As she went past the place itself
gave a shiver, a shudder
as if sloughing off her very presence.
We who are soft and warm and full of life
should never visit such a place.
Poem in response to the painting 'Tick Tock' by Duncan Hopkins
It Snowed again…
It snowed again all through the night;
Grey shadows cloak the wall
Where snow lies cushioned, eerie, light,
White as a waterfall;
And yew is swallowed in the spray -
With frozen frond and branch
Etched bare above the streaming way
Of pillowed avalanche.
No moonlight spread, or light of dawn -
But brightness here before the morn.
in response to 'La Pinede I' by Elisa McLeod
ephemeral pricked by spiky hawthorn
moments of clarity – suddenly clouded
in response to the work of Elisa McLeod
It glimmered in the dusk like a large patterned pearl. Pete gazed mournfully at the building. He had come so far and still had a long way to go. Could he possibly make it there before darkness enveloped the rough path and made walking dangerous?
He felt that, as he had survived so far, there must be a future for him. First thing though was to find other survivors. As the building was lighted, there must be – or have been – someone there. The young man had come a lonely fearful path to reach this point – past empty houses, some still pristine though echoing with emptiness, others like burnt out faces with holes for eyes.He had smelt the charnel remains on the road, but decided to look away.
The sun was continuing to set. Should he spend this night under the large olive tree hanging over him, rather than going into the formless echoing valley? Which held more danger, he wondered. The marshy path which might have snakes and alligators lurking near it, and maybe a brace or two of wild boar, or the hillside where he now stood? Pete felt sweaty and vulnerable . He was afraid that no showers for ten days could give wolves the scent of his body.
In the end the sun dropped behind the hill. Before he lay down to sleep, Pete took a long look at the pearly building glowing serenely in the distance. He hoped it held some promise for him.
in response to "We Could Have Had It All" by Jayne Anita Smith
I have given him a name. Owen is a dreamer. How has everything happened this way? His large eyes wandered thoughtfully, seeing nothing, backtracking in his mind over his young life. A thick crop of black hair is swept sideways across his broad forehead –with black brows arching above those large pensive eyes. His long oval face, with the shade stubbled jaw, tilted so that the light from the window – which glows on his forehead – also lights his top lip. It gives him a quizzical look, as if he was questioning himself. “Why am I here in this world, and what do you think of me?”
He has dressed himself in a dark suit with a dark tie, conversative, almost severe. This is an interview – an interview with a painter, and he has done his best. But he did not need to speak.. The painter could see what was in his mind.
The painter says “You have been to a funeral, or some special memorial event. You are sad and thoughtful, reflecting on how this will make your life different now. Will you feel more free? Or more lost and lonely? Will you be brave as you face the future, or seek to hide in conformity, or isolation? Owen, you look past me to the future as I look at you.”
in response to 'Man looking out' by Ilker Cinarel
To Direct the Sight with Intention
Rigid board, comrade
Without, with suspension
There hangs this prophetic soul
Below, sawn, hacked or snapped in two,
jagged and turned: causes are regurgitated.
An eye inflamed, peering so deep
Phantasm black smudged strokes;
the layers cry over a jaundiced face
she is now obscured.
I must be emphatic- knowing it’s in there
I bang out the letters, smacking the forms
against the ill windows;
this will be dealt with later,
we will have words....
Melting in the winter sun
he turns in this heavy coat to re-animate.
Smelting and steaming, cold and hot,
To fade away the other side,
the decisive side that lies.
The blood circulates, mixed plasma with bursts of red
that surrounds the life – life that is blue, iced;
and yes, who did deservedly die?
A splintered painted wailing wood chipped symbol
of ribbed mummified chest....
Subsequently I feel more: as I see, I stop -
the board is motionless, it rests.
This form - a body in weak postulation,
his manner in defeat, shreds the cloth;
how used, this article of faith, to endure and to cover.
I have endeavoured to intrude – my coat held wide;
I am now the realised being,
wretched hegemonic man, were you betrayed....
I see you in me
We are both the nature of our world.
in response to "bloody turncoat" by Sam Bassett
in response to "bloody turncoat" by Sam Bassett
Drip, swirl. Scratch, bang,
rough, smooth, splattered, sticky, dragging, rounded, jagged , sawn patchwork
brutal patchworks, fragments.
in response to work by Sam Bassett
Allan Forster on the exhibition
I took the opportunity to look, touch and describe exhibits of artwork and sculpture, which interested me and made me more confused than usual about my feelings towards art and exhibitions. (Maybe I was influenced by my guiding a visually impaired friend. I found it a bit strange looking at other artists’ creations rather than my own.)
I particularly liked the exhibit by Janet McEwan, which I describe as a grey serrated triangle supporting two white beach pebbles on red steel supports and a pink ball. I don’t like the colour pink but can forgive the artist on this occasion.
Also, by Emma Griffin was an oil painted old spray can. It seemed to take on a new lease of life.
Vonny Carter on the exhibition
Anna Stangl’s work reminds me of the paintings of Kate Walters, visited in November – Millenium Gallery – same sort of message – but Kate’s work is darky dark – Anna’s, light. I like them both.
Emma Griffin’s sense of composition and colour make her work appealing visually without feeling the compelling need (these days) to understand.
So too Elisa McLeod – charming for all those who love nature and have the ability to see beauty in the ‘everywhere.’
Political, environmental messages only go to the converted anyway.
Charmaine Honeychurch’s is always honest and visceral .
I like the way the main image in Turncoat by Samuel Bassett is actually painted – I’d like it with wings and without the other pieces hanging down.
Morwenna Morrison’s work is strong and messageful, but I am not that interested or rather despair of the humans she’s trying to reach.
Pete Ward – wow – right on! Absolutely my favourite!
Duncan Hopkins – Decency and Taste installation – v . good
Tick Tock – I’d put on my wall
His shamanistic “Fire’ (part of 4 canvassses) as well.
Ros Bason – very sensual, different.
Jo Haigh on the exhibition
Caroline, I so enjoyed the morning at CMR .Yourself and Darren were the perfect hosts and I got an awful lot out of it as you could probably tell! So much so that I have tried to articulate in proper words what it did for me!
I wanted to see the exhibition "New Visions" @CMR_Gallery because I
thought it might ask & perhaps answer some questions I have about the reason & place of painting as an art practice in today's world. I chose to view the exhibition in conjunction with the writing 'workshop' "You have to Dream" hopeful that being privy to other participants thoughts & feelings about the exhibition would be illuminating and that I myself would have to look longer & harder at the pieces to enable some meaningful thoughts to be expressed in words! I found the exhibition vibrant , lively and inspired. No traditional land & seascapes, no boats , no wildlife portraiture. … In Cornwall?
What a relief! One thing that the varied exhibits had in common (apart from paint) was that they all required some further degrees of exploration. Some posed more of a challenge than others but for a variety of different reasons.
The Morwenna Morrison & Jayne Anita Smith works were challenging because of their subject matter & Ros Bason provided a visual challenge of trying to make sense of things almost completely unknown. I found her images strangely compelling and inexplicably Nanki was still In Full Swing in his/her/it's fleshy arena in my mind the next day!
Some of the exhibitors displayed a deep & genuine love of paint & pigment: Pete Ward with his divine, deep, gritty earth pigments & Charmaine Honeychurch with her expressive, practically 3D, organic, luscious layering of paint. Unusual surfaces also gave an added dimension. Frances Walsh's drift imagery paintings on aluminium were interesting. I particularly admired 'Mobile Home' it reminded me of an old caravan livery and the combed green paint & graphite lines cleverly made it travel!
Samuel Bassett's layered, constructed works on wood were my absolute favourite: language, thoughts, ideas, memories, daydreams & internal monologues in images, presented in a witty , aesthetically pleasing but highly individual way. Ad hoc yet cohesive, highly personal yet accessible, with a mix of humour & a dark edge. Inspiring!
So now I'm smiling…"New Visions" has proved that painting still has lots of life left in it! "You Have to Dream" has ignited the notion that It doesn't have to be conventional, saleable, understood or even liked to be enjoyed. There will always be new and exciting painting as long as there are artists who love the medium, extend the boundaries and are able and willing to share their vision.
'You Have To Dream' participant