Giving up the ghost

Giving up the ghost

‘Giving up the ghost’ oil on paper 2021

Giving up the ghost is an intriguing phrase. If an idea/thing/machine isn’t working, it gives up the ghost. My initial exhibition proposal was not working. I gave it up.

What happened when I gave it up?

Cave In, oil on paper 2021

Disintegrate, crumbled, wither, cease, disappear, vanish, rot, succumb, pass away, quit, perish, go down, wilt, buckle, yield, bow, defer, capitulate, give in, cave in. I enacted a series of performative states all experienced across a period of a week or more.

Yield, oil on paper 2021

I think about my compost heap, all the layers of unwanted bits and scraps evolving into a rich magical loam. I tend to it, feed it, and care for it and the other micro inhabitants of the hot bin tend to it, alter it and be in it. Left alone in the dark it transforms into something useful. All may appear like shit but all is not lost.

“Across complex life-sustaining webs, the care and neglect that are put in a world will flow and circulate through living matter and processes” (Puig de la Bellacasa, 2017)

Left alone in the dark I formulated a new plan. In the making all becomes clearer. I visualize each of my performative states, embodied them into matter through the paint.

Composting, oil on canvas 2021

Work I produced on our self initiated making day on Zoom Saturday 30th Jan, some will become a series of prompt cards to enable me perform on a relational object – the round table. The dialogue on the day helped us collaboratively compact, turn and aerate our thoughts around our practices as they stand.

Prompt cards – WIP Jan 2021


Puig de la Bellacasa, M (2017) Matter of care: speculative ethics in more than human worlds. Minneapolis. University of Minnesota Press.