Thoughts of Forts


I have just finished speaking to Kay, one of our tutors, about my identity project. Kay liked the idea of keeping the ‘box’ idea as a part of my final presentation, and the more we talked about it, the more I liked the idea.

And then a whole journey of new and recycled thoughts began… I was wondering about the context of the box, and what it would mean for me to have my images outside the box, having grown too big for the smaller box, as it were. And then it came to me. Four walls is like a fort, or a strong hold, four represents strength and stability in the Tarot. Thinking of the box as a kind of stronghold gave me a meaning to the concept, and so I decided to construct my identity in the form of a big box, approx 1.2 x 1 x 1 metres. The other fragments of my exhibition could go in the box, or be scattered around the box.

Well, I was really into this idea and couldn’t wait to get started… but I kept on thinking…

Thoughts of forts led to thoughts of towers. Now I love towers, I have a real thing for them and I built one in England. So before two long my stronghold and fort had  turned into a Tower of Strength. And that is it… No more changes! I have followed the creative thinking process through from that original Dilmah teabag box and these are the heights it has reached!

Here are some pages from my sketchbook, illustrating my thought process… albeit rather roughly…


The tower will be constructed from four lengths of the bamboo that grows in my garden. I will leave the shoots growing out of the tips as this will symbolise that my Tower of Strength is still growing.  The footprint of the tower will be approximately 35cm square, to make it portable and strong.

The sides will be filled in with the images that I was originally going to make into giant cardboard posters. I am printing the photo’s onto fabric and these will be stitched to a backing fabric which will be stitched around the bamboo. Among the photos will be my fragments, (ie the one of the jug and spotted cup, shown in a previous post). The fragments are things that are part of who I am now.

This will project will indeed be a constructed identity on more than one level. What would be nice is if I still liked it once I have finished. I have issues with stuff I make. I love the process but as soon as it is finished I cannot wait to see the back of it!


And just to finish off this post I will leave you with a sketchbook page featuring a photocopy of one of my almost finished ‘fragment’ panels. This has some favourite china, including a cup, cups and mugs are very much a part of my everyday life, and I am sure my body 25% black tea! Also in the layer are old baking paper from England, and part of an antiquarian book which was  given to me by my in-laws when I was married. The embroidered words are part of a poem I wrote a couple of years ago.