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From arriving home from Portugal to hanging my exhibit at Lakeside there doesn’t seem to have been time to breathe!  Or to reflect….and cogitation is a much undervalued commodity in modern life it seems.  It was often something I complained about whilst working in Higher Education where a deal more cogitation would have often saved us from numerous cock ups and contra temps.  Anyway today is an opportunity to sit back a little and savour what we saw on our all too brief trip and to contemplate a little now that Epidemic!/Black North is on the walls in the Angear space at Lakeside.  I need to pay tribute to Neil and his staff who were highly professional, smoothly efficient and helpful in a way that a lot of other bigger art spaces in our region could learn from (and further afield for that matter).  In particular Freddy & Luke got the pieces up quick smart.

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I’m happy with the way it looks and relieved it worked out pretty much as I had intended.  I just hope to get some positive feedback on a project that, one way and another, has dominated the past twelve months and more.  If you don’t know already it runs from now until 2nd February 2014 and there’s a viewing evening on Friday 22nd November from 7pm.

I have been to the Porto area of Portugal six or seven times now and it is always a pleasure.  Fresh insights occur every time and this time around was no exception.  I made a project several years back on the extraordinary (to me at least) space between the beach on the Atlantic and the lagoon.  The photo here shows the toilet block (!) near the beach at just about the narrowest strip (less than a couple hundred yards) of it at Costa Nova.  I am always fascinated by the way in which the salt air affects everything on the one side and the lagoon seems to protect everything on the other.  Another trip took us up into the mountains around Arouca…I’d been up there further north before but this time the terrain was more rugged and exposed (reminding me a little of Dartmoor in Devon).

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On the way up we saw some lovely landscape and on top it was glorious until the mists and rain came in…just in time to prevent me from photographing the largest waterfall in the country…I got these shots, one of which shows the information board…!

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