What is your relationship with sleep? Do you fall into bed and into a deep, refreshing slumber, greeting the following day with energy and enthusiasm? Or is this basic human function a cause of stress and concern, worrying if you’ll sleep, and if so, for how long... anxiously questioning if you’ll be able to function the next day, with the brain fog that accompanies sleep deprivation?
My practise investigates our individual and societal relationships to sleep. This interest is driven by (but in no way limited to) my own experiences of living with a neurological sleep disorder.
Lack of sleep impacts on waking life, causing a sense of otherness… an eroding of time, place, and self…. It creates isolation, confusion, desolation… a feeling of being in a fog and in some way absent in your own life…. I seek to test empathy: can those who sleep well ever truly understand what it is to have sleeping issues, and how these impact everyday life? How can I create images that convey this otherness?
The language we use to communicate our sleep experiences and levels of tiredness greatly influence the work. This is sometimes represented directly by use of text, though most often the work is a reaction to conversations I have had, questions I have been asked, and engagement with support group forums.
As a multi-disciplinary artist, I use experimentation to approach ideas from different angles, allowing the subject matter – and serendipity - to dictate the medium.