Photo: Mary Fletcher in St Ives, South West

Mary Fletcher

Artist, Film-maker, Writer

I wander at the edges, a flaneuse, observing, seizing fragments by drawing swiftly or using a video camera, and I express my ideas in a personal way employing a diaristic confessional mode that communicates clearly to reach the power of universal meaning, and to engage a wide audience. Educated in the sixties; empowered by feminism and by psychotherapy; through art I give shape to myself and become a woman who speaks of her life in the twenty-first century. My most distinctively vivid imagery has resulted from confronting personal painful experiences of grief, following the murder of a partner by strangers, finding out family secrets which include child abuse, and coming to terms with involuntary childlessness. Work transforming personal pain into art has taken the form of painting, installation, sometimes inviting direct participation by the visitor, and video. I am aware of following on from a heritage of women such as Kathe Kollwitz, Frida Kahlo, Sophie Calle, Tracey Emin. I continue to make work which is rooted in seizing the moment via swift observational figurative drawing - a skill practised over 40 years to attain an expressive economy of linear fluency. These fragments of research can be developed in vibrant paintings or ceramic figures that capture a sense of movement and rhythm. These often celebrate everyday enjoyments in the same sort of way as Bonnard, an artist I have loved since I was first an art student in the 1960s. The use of swiftly captured fragments also applies to works where I have collaborated to invite other people's contributions of images, words or stories told in sound or video. Here the art can begins in brief one-to-one encounters with people who need to be approached with care and respect - an egalitarian aesthetic. read full statement

Location St Ives, South West
Activities Participatory projects, Critical writing, Creative writing, Gallery education, Film-making
Artforms / type of project Ceramics, Drawing, Film & Video, Painting, Participatory
Tags feminist, humanist, socialist, figurative, expressive, political, personal,

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