Dionne Hood West Yorkshire, United Kingdom
I am currently producing work that is a a combination of paintings and mixed media relief pieces that combine embroidery, paper clay, precious metal clay, paper, watercolour, ink and found objects. Each piece is accompanied with a poem about and as a response to the physical work. I also work as a development librarian.
Originally using and exploring ceramics for almost 20 years to tell an unspoken, unwritten story, to express concerns and inner responses to, and the interpretation of existence and experiences. My ceramics work explored various techniques including slip casting, hand building and various surface treatments to create mainly sculpture and some relief ‘prints’.
During the last few years my work has moved away from ceramics and into experimentation with various techniques, processes and materials. Through this exploration I have discovered that embroidery, paper clay, precious metal clay combined with collage, found objects, drawing and text offered more of a way of working that felt to be a natural fit and delivered more opportunities to extend my visual vocabulary. The lines of thread being objects in themselves, representing a movement, an action - not just as a means of creating colour or texture to sit on the surface of work. Individual words also acting as objects with their own easily accessible meaning and interpretation as well as their line, colour, space and feelings evoked. Found objects given new meaning when placed or arranged with other objects. Free drawing creating different connections with objects.
The texture and colour that I found absorbing in the use of ceramics could also be found and taken further and is more broadly available through other materials. I have found this new way of working to be more immediate and doesn’t involve the slow processes that are a predominant part of any ceramic work. These other materials also offer variable degrees of softness and hardness, temperature, visual reflection, depth and malleability that enables a greater exploration and vocabulary for me to use for my own personal narrative and expression.
I pursue the experimentation with these varying objects, movements, textures, techniques, lines, writings and temperatures to present information and expressions, to convey a patchwork of passing revelations; a sequence of unconnected or connected answers which may or may not offer the possibility of a coherent ‘story’ - the offering of specific objects, perceived physical actions that don’t necessarily provide an accessible narrative.
Current work explores the personal effect of a Catholic upbringing, the all-encompassing ideology that infiltrates all areas of life and what happens when this immersive ideology is questioned by an individual, by myself, as a response to events, happenings, behaviours of others and ways of being that are not part of or should not be part of that ideology – the secrets, the hidden experiences and actions that don’t fit within the constraints and parameters of the teachings of the Catholic faith. The artwork and subsequent poems explore the feelings of loss, growing dissatisfaction and lack of confidence that develops when confronted by a happening or happenings that confuse and contradict the all-encompassing guidance, direction and way of living espoused by the family and Catholic faith. The artwork and poetry explore the questioning of deep-rooted views, habits, actions and understandings that are part of the formation of an individual, myself, born into the Catholic environment and how this upbringing continues to have an impact on me as an adult. The mixed media and poems explore the spiritual, physical, habitual and visual effects on my upbringing and how these are difficult to reject and exist outside of. All works acrylic, embroidery, collage and found objects on board accompanied by Moth Baby poem collection
I am always looking to go somewhere unexpected.
My work has always been about my very personal responses to the happenings of life. Objects and images are used to describe very personal reactions to life experiences.