COVID-19 and its restrictions I adjusted and adapted to, although my life nearing 82 didn’t alter very much, down at Sorrento.
I guess I have been in a kind of privileged position where I can have all my art materials delivered, and that includes stretched linen canvases ready to paint on. Momentum hasn’t faltered.
My studio activity wasn't really altered at all, except re-reading Herman Melville’s Moby Dick for only the second time since 1958, gave me the grand ambition to create something worthy of that famous novel. I began this four panelled painting called Call Me Ishmael during the lockdown of 2020 and I kept at it during the lockdowns of 2021—finally completing it in time to travel to Milani Gallery, Brisbane to be shown in my one person show. Alas I was not able to see the exhibition.
+ Recent works on linen and plywood Gareth Sansom, 2021. Installation view.
Unfortunately, show set to take place in 2020 at STATION Gallery was not possible, but the gallery was able to organise some studio visits, a Zoom session with an audience, and a virtual re-presentation on the gallery’s walls. Art Guide Australia also came on board with a great QandA recorded interview.
Socially my interactions and studio visits with other artists ceased, but I keep up to date online when I need to. For my wife Christine and me, our dog has proved to be a revelation, getting us out of the house regularly which of course helps with our fitness, and additionally some interactions with other dog owners who though not art orientated are eager for information about what makes us tick artistically.
I do understand the plight of young people especially, but I am optimistic about the future—and I look forward to the chance to visit Berlin, Paris, and Venice again.
+ Call me Ishmael Gareth Sansom, 2020. Oil, enamel, pencil and Polaroid photos on linen. 4 parts: 243.84 x 365.76 cm.
Author/s: Gareth Sansom