News Update: July 19th 2017

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Holding Time: Funded by ACE

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Liz with Hunter and Wren, 2017

“The Fringe is characterised by the presentation of photographic work that operates more like conceptual art than photography. This is particularly the case with the Tidy Street installation by artist Lisa Creagh” – Eti Wade, Source Magazine, Winter 2006

This project has both the social and participatory aspects of Tidy Street and the elaborate, digitally patterned aspects of The Instant Garden, with the addition of portraiture, animation, 3D modelling. It is the most ambitious work I have attempted to date and will result in an outcome of real/virtual networks and communities united by the deconstruction of received ideas of Motherhood and Time. In 2015 with an AA2A Residency at City College, Brighton and Hove, I began photographic portraits of breastfeeding mothers resulting in a network of passionately committed mothers. Building the-parlour.org we created the groundwork for this project, approaching the health community in Brighton/London and creating a steering committee to bid for small pockets of funding locally.

With the support of the Arts Council, and two commissions, a residency and two exhibitions, I now have the structure for a yearlong project to challenge traditional ideas of photography as social practice. Holding Time affords me the opportunity to build on achievements of past work, whilst interacting with audiences via new methods. With this work I can build on my reputation as a feminist digital practitioner whilst entering international competitions, exhibiting in non-commercial spaces and repositioning myself in a publicly funded art market that includes hospitals, museums and residencies, as the basis for a future sustainable art practice.

As I reflect on the two years that have lead me here to this place of finding support, encouragement, excitement as the project starts to really take shape, I'm drawn to think about all the great people who have helped to make this happen. In particular it strikes me that a small group of men have had an important hand in the work's beginnings: Gideon Fisher the technician at City College who has nurtured me through a few hair-raising technical issues, Jim Smythes who kept me on under a new title of "Artist in Residence Mentor" so I could carry on shooting in the studio when my residency ran out after a year, Lionel de Rothschild who has always believed in me and encouraged me to believe in myself by commissioning a new Floriculture piece for his Exbury house, thus providing seed funding for the work, Mike Barrett who created all the beautiful glassworks to feature in the Timemaps and of course Steven Swingler, my ever-supportive husband who calmly encouraged me to breastfeed in the first place and has stood beside me through the arduous process of keeping on keeping on....thanks guys! Without you i truly could not have got this far.

And now that the train is steadily climbing, the creative process chugging into gear, I'm taking on a new team to help me through the next stage: Nathan Klein, Susy d'Aliesio and Talia Ellis Gilmour are currently researching everything there is to know about breastfeeding and society/artists in order to help me put into action my plan of The Parlour - an online resource where discussions around breastfeeding can lead into cultural projects around motherhood, creativity and time.

it is my intention that this work will not only reach the art world but also those who are not typically visual arts consumers: through The Parlour I can reach new audiences through social media channels, using podcasts and blogs, Pinterst pages and youTube channels to build an online network supportive of the aims of the work, as well as the work itself.

It is my sincere hope that this work can bring about social change. Please visit the site and donate if you would like to help spreading the word.

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© Lisa Creagh 2017