I am an artist working mainly in sculpture and installation. I live and work from my home in Whorlton, a small village near the town of Barnard Castle in Teesdale.
In 2007 I began studying Art and Design at City of Sunderland College, moving on to University of Sunderland where I graduated with BA First Class Hons Fine Art in 2013. In 2019 I returned to University of Sunderland to study MA Fine Art graduating in 2021 with a distinction.
I now work 1 day each week as an Associate Researcher – Green Spaces Social Prescribing at University of Sunderland, supporting the development and delivery of Green Spaces Social Prescribing research and knowledge exchange aligned to the Health and Care workforce Interdisciplinary Research Network in the Helen McArdle Nursing and Care Research Institute.
In October 2022 I began a Professional Doctorate at University of Sunderland, this links into my role as Green Space Social Prescribing Research Associate. My research considers “The Value of walking and Creative Engagement with Place and Locality for Subjective Wellbeing”.
My inspiration comes from: being outdoors in nature; meditation; yoga and the universe as well as experimentation and the act of making work itself. I use the outdoor spaces around me to create installations and I find that my work can evolve in unexpected ways by simply changing the environment in which I work.
In my work I explore our relationship with the natural world – a voyage of discovery and an approach which in turn enables us to become more aware of ourselves. This becomes a SelfScape – a keener sense of self and our part in the wider ecology of place which in turn can help with our own and the community’s sense of health and wellbeing.
One of the more surprising things to come out of the Covid-19 pandemic has been a sharper awareness of, and respect for, the natural world.
The pandemic has underlined the importance of how spending time outdoors can have a positive effect on our mental health.
The coronovirus pandemic and the peace and quiet during the first lockdown made many people more aware of the beauty of birdsong. Listening to birdsong can enrich our lives/provide solace in times of stress.
It is my hope that the work I create will help ensure that the appreciation of the natural world does not disappear now that the world is getting back to normal after the Covid-19 Pandemic – indeed, to create a new normal, to make certain that, into the future, we develop a more sustainable way of living, caring for and engaging with our environment.
I have worked with quite a few art teachers, but Jane is definitely top of my list.Jenny Cathcart
Since 2013 I have been working as an Artist and Creative Encourager in and around areas in the North East, including Teesdale and Sunderland.
I deliver art sessions and art workshops to members of the community each week, during Covid – 19 these were delivered via zoom. Sessions are now back to being delivered face to face.