The textile work is going very slowly . I have had continuing dental problems which should not make a difference and continuing problems with my ageing and increasingly demented mother which most certainly do . I suppose it brings me face to face with the basic issue of being an artist in my family . How can I do something that brings in so little money and have it regarded as ‘ real work ‘ ? ( A quote from my mother when asked why I should not do what she was looking forward to in retirement ie art ” but that is after a lifetime of real work ! ” ) Because as an artist without a studio ( we can’t afford it ) I work from home , my time is not really valued . After all I have no employer to get annoyed if I am called on the telephone or have to go out shopping . And this is all so ingrained .
Actually my mother’s family are often very talented and highly civilized , not at all philistine – I was always being taken to museums , galleries , theatres as a child . But somehow I imbibed the idea that we should be consumers and not producers of art . At least unless as a hobby to relax after a hard day as a highly paid professional ! Since my mother always drew , painted and sewed better than me is the difference just what I call myself ? Or do I work harder at it ? I certainly hope so ! And of course she never had any interest in ‘mud pies’ ( clay ) which is what I feel I was born for .
And that is another sobering thought ; I call myself a ceramic and textile artist but I haven’t worked in clay for 10 , nearly 11 years . I sold my kiln to help family finances but have never been able to replace it . Must I go back to evening classes ? But we couldn’t afford that either . I dream about clay .