Observatory Pavilion

Sitting perpendicular to the lie of my bed, and listening to the soft focus of bird song, which unfortunately although not so unfortunate (as in time, I have grown accustomed to the sound) is consistently interrupted by a heavily-bodied bus, rattling the windowpane, ceasing, bound by traffic directly in relation to my view; my thoughts travel to the sound vibrations that unremittingly travel through the single-glaze of the window.

This particular event, which seems to occur numerous times a day, assimilating a kind of sequential order – happens to be one of the occasions in which my intimate sphere of comfort is broken. It is in the very idea of someone staring with committal from the upper deck, and in the position of exerting power and judgment (perhaps more unknowingly, as we all do so) over your delicately crafted environment. Everything becomes unexpectedly vulnerable as they catch what I can only imagine, a look of utter disconcertion.

I suppose in a roundabout way, comprehending these perhaps all too regular occurrences of unsettlement within cherished space, I am unpicking the importance of space as providing security and balance: as this is where I happen to work best. Some may heavily disagree, but I feel that this occurs in my bedroom – exempting the external daily sounds that occur like clockwork and sink into my subconscious; it is a space of peace, and more significantly the place in which I dream. The space of the bedroom, the house, with all its objects of familiarity and memory, offer what the contained studio does not – an organic place of reflection, process needn’t be rushed. We also mustn’t overlook the popular saying: in order to effectively recollect what has drifted from thought, one should travel back the place they primarily grasped the conscious activity. Fortunate for me, the act of traveling is not too far.

I can speak of this little distance with assured pleasure, due to the grounded space of the bedroom acting as my only static comfort. From domesticity I collect fragments regarding our affinity with objects, possessions and the way in which we utilise a space that we are embodied within, and it within us. The house is my source, often initiating ideas; yet mostly the work is formed for outside, in order to experience land and environment through something typically bound to the intimate.

In essence, the best part of the spacein which I tend to regard and physicalise my workings is in actual fact: a metaphorical space. It moves with me in transience. Perhaps this wasn’t a conscious decision, but it is how I have come to know its substance.

I have also come to realise that my work is more fulfilling when the thought process is led intuitively, so essentially it isn’t really led at all. More the possibility is formed for it to naturally take a hold of the attention in a sensation of mild reveal. That is not to say that I regard creativity as a passive activity, but I feel it constitutes as one of the most intriguing factors – when an idea is not yet tangible. Full comprehension hasn’t quite been reached, so it can be left to linger over; time is respectfully immaterial. This intrinsic process may occur across the span of the day, proving ambiguous maybe, but enjoyable all the same.

In hindsight, so much of time and space is embodied, weaved into my practice. The spirit of time is everything, but also insignificant, its passage may not be linear. Further, space is everything, to the point that I would attain it to almost exist as medium. Due to the nature of my work revolving around altering and expanding the perception of the viewer through the use the fragmentary mirrors –the image is essentially formed within the mirror, and in the act of observation.  The viewing tools work best in transient environments, where a slight adjustment can alter the entire image; a cloud-passing overhead may strangely fracture as it continuously forms a fleeting collage of the surrounding area.

In the sense of my thought, space is complex due to it being so transitory. Although an element I can distinctly situate is the need for grounded space, a space that can be returned to and offers rest and renewal. Not simply physically – but also on a level of creative consciousness.  Amongst these momentary images of environment, exteriority, and the fluidity of space with all its possibilities, I still wish for the comforts of intimacy. I suppose the rattle of the window will just have to do.

Find out more about Gabriella’s work or forthcoming journeys by visiting her websiteOr share some of your favourite travels via her email address: gbeckhurst@hotmail.com