the flush of delight when someone I mentor is awarded a grant warms the cockles!

I have to share this news, but confidentiality won’t allow me to say who it is – but well done you!

It’s an absolute privilege to mentor the people I do – they are committed and serious about their practice and work really hard to survive, despite all odds these days…..

I know how it feels to be an artist and face endless applications, constant rejections and still try to keep positive, keep going, believe in what you do. Anyone who thinks artists have it easy has evidently not tried it.

I often wonder why I do what I do, but the truth is, it’s because I care. Simple.

at risk of being a groupie for Thinking Practice, great paper on ‘being plural’

There is little I can say about Mark Robinson’s latest blog, “We have come here today to be plural” other than you must read it if you wish to read a balanced and considered reflection upon the impact austerity is having on the arts. He uses some wonderful images as illustrations of how people can work together, let’s call them benchmarks, to whet your appetite.

I hold another image in my mind after reading it – A Sudden Gust of Wind by Jeff Wall.

jeff wall a sudden gust of wind

Flow likes a challenge, but what does Flow do? who do we work with? where do we do it?

I realised that whilst I’ve been busy having meetings, making plans and thinking forward, I haven’t really shared on my website what I actually DO. Typical, one gets busy doing and forgets to spread the word. And what is my ‘normal’ may not be yours! So here goes, in a nutshell, this is what I/Flow does:

Flow specialises in producing visual arts projects in partnership with major stakeholders, presenting new art in unusual places. Think artworks on beaches, exhibitions in Coastwatch buildings, films in historic stone barns on coastpaths, soundworks emanating from industrial cranes (having a conversation!), performance artists concealed under bridges, casts of quarry walls in forests – anything is possible outside the constraints of the gallery walls.

We work with acoustic specialists, geologists, archaeologists, zoologists, foresters and librarians – opening up visual art to new audiences and innovative ways of perceiving the world around us.

Flow has two key areas of delivery – FCA Projects initiates and delivers scattered-site visual art projects in non-gallery locations with partners, and FCA Advice supports others to do so – either by mentoring artists at ground-level, or by guiding organisations in the processes necessary to develop sound partnerships. Everything Flow does is about collaboration and dialogue and research is at the core of what we do.

We specialise in working with both art and non-art partners to achieve this and can provide a bespoke team to respond to particular requirements of any project. We also have experience of touring, working with strategic partners to tour both existing and newly commissioned contemporary visual artworks. For example, thanks to a grant from Arts Council England, we’re presently in consultation with the Forestry Commission, the National Trust and the Canal & River Trust about a touring programme, which will begin with a  period of action research.

We’re always on the lookout for new partners – current conversations include talking with an ethnozoologist; digital locative media producers; land-management organisations, Community Libraries and a writer whose subject area is technobiophilia. We love a challenge!

last month Free for Feb, this month it’s #internationalwomensday 2 free artist mentor sessions


Last month on Friday 1st February I launched Flow Advice by offering a huge TWELVE half-hour mentoring session to artists. All slots were taken and feedback tells me well received. So thanks to everyone for participating and I hope we talk again soon.

This month, launching on Friday 1st March, I want to do it again (but smaller – that was a big commitment!), but with a focus on mentoring women artists to celebrate International Women’s Day on 8th March. Maybe it is because my daughter suggested I should do it.  Maybe it was my going through old artworks of mine last week and unearthing a commissioned video from years ago, for which I interviewed Bristol women from many cultural background to identify similarities, has been on my mind. Whatever the reason, I think its a good idea.

When I made that film in 2001 I believe my daughter was about 15 years old. Brilliant to see now that, as a fantastic  woman who has studied human rights, she has adopted feminism into her life  in the same way she has good food and enjoying art. I guess it was just part of everyday life.

So the free sessions for March are to celebrate International Womens Day and will be for women only. There will be only 2 sessions this month, each half an hour, so you need to book in quickly. The same system as last month, please complete the preliminary survey, so I have some understanding of what you do and what you would like to discuss.

And off we go!!!