A couple of years ago I started working with concrete. I soon left this behind due to the dangers of casting fumes and the weight of the objects once set.
The beautiful thing about concrete is that it lasts, even when left outside in all weathers. This particular work was created last spring for an exhibition in Newport and has since been in my garden. At the time I had been living in Bristol for a short while and was feeling the stress of transition and academia. I felt stuck, frozen, with too much to process. Concrete described this state of mind for me better than words could.
Concrete is used commercially to build walls, contain, set boundaries and make strong bases, this is what I was craving. The work is heavy, I had to transport it to the gallery where it was shown, my car got a flat tyre due to the weight in my boot. When the exhibition was over I put it in the garden so I didn't have to try and carry it up the stairs into my flat. So it remained in my garden, bikes and bins had been lent against it and plants grew over it. I forgot it was there.
Today, when it was unearthed, it seemed different. I could see the detail, the colours had come through in a subtle and beautiful way. The block is still dense and will never be any other way but I don't currently have any intention of moving it. I guess it will erode slowly over time, for now it is on display in my garden, in the sunlight with my rhododendron.
It has come to symbolise change and security. When I first caste this it was difficult, I couldn't move it without help (even then it wasn't easy), it was a hindrance. What is has become is a celebration of industrial materials in my little urban sanctuary.