In June 1962at the Earth Summit in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, more than 178 countries adopted a ‘comprehensive plan of action to build a global partnership for sustainable development to improve human lives and protect the environment.’ It has been 20yrs since the United Nations compiled the 17 sustainable development goals that would seek to ‘improve health and education, reduce inequality, and spur economic growth, all while tackling climate change and working to preserve our oceans and forests.’ By recognising that ending poverty and other deprivations must go hand in hand with strategies, I see it as my responsibility to help.
A chance encounter led me to Applied Arts Scotland and the research led project, ‘Closing the Loop’ I was a little lost by my practice, a little overwhelmed by the project and even the incredible bunch of people that were involved in the project, but my goodness I am happy that I am a part of it!
I can’t say it’s easy to be sustainable. I can’t say that I am not tempted by chemical patinas and brand new shiny things…but rummaging in the scrapyard and gathering litter whilst I walk, offers me a whole different level of inner peace and I realised a while ago that being authentic in my art was only possible, if I am authentic in my life. So, I use other people’s waste streams and hand tools wherever possible, I build on skills by training with other artists and artisans locally, and I create art that has a strong aesthetic to enable me to have conversations about the more difficult choices we all need to make, without judging the individual or the journey they are on.
My new work has been developed whilst exploring my garden for the Graduate Associates Programme with CiRCUS Artspace, and what the outer reaches of this little space I call home, truly means: sustainability beyond my own boundaries.