Poet & Cat is a showcase for my jewellery, painting and collage and other artefacts made by way of escape from my daily work with words.
My original training was as a bookbinder at what was then the London College of Printing, and I worked for a while as a binder in Norfolk before a series of house moves made it impossible for me to keep the studio – removal men and first floor flats don’t mix with cast-iron boardchoppers and nipping presses.
Fortunately you don’t need much equipment for writing, and during this period my poetry began to be published by Bloodaxe Books (see my Bloodaxe page).
Another stroke of luck was a move that allowed me to start taking jewellery classes with Alice Goldsack in Bristol, which I did for several years while gradually building up the equipment for a new workshop of my own. Over the past few years, either side of the pandemic, I have been exhibiting as part of Oxfordshire Artweeks, as well as selling through the Church Lane Gallery in Banbury and occasionally also through the Banbury Museum Shop. I am a member of Chipping Norton Arts.
I gradually came to realise, though, that all the time I have been skirting around painting: writing about it, surrounding myself with it, working with composition and colour in my bindings and in my house, but never attempting the thing myself. So recently I have taken the plunge and started work in collage and acrylic that explores houses past and present and the haunting coastscapes of West Penwith where I am lucky enough to spend quite a bit of my time.
My intention now is to find ways of combining elements of my various practices, enabling them all to speak to one another.
In the interests of full disclosure: I’m quite bad at updating this website, but am much more effective on Instagram, where you can find me as @poet.and.cat