April 7, 2015

Art Blogger of the Week: Anna Mortimer in Suffolk, England

Anna Mortimer and Shrink. Photo: Robert Taylor

There has been a lot of art criticism bashing lately. In Temporary Art Review Steven Cottingham stated that innovations in art criticism are fifty years behind, quoting Charles Bernstein in Parkett 84 saying that “art criticism, insofar as it succumbs to a paranoiac fear of theatricality that induces frame-lock, lags behind poetry at its peril.” Nottingham and Bernstein should check out Anna Mortimer's art writing on her blog. She is an artist, who knows how to make art writing poetic. And you can sense that already in this feature:

Art scene

Suffolk, on the East coast of England with its Constable skies, Hambling seas and Gainsborough portraits is still at its heart a rural idyll, its face resolutely turned away from passing time. However there are signs of strain on its contented face. A growing interest at Snape Malting with SNAP festival, The Pacitti Company Think Tank in Ipswich with its support of Live Art and many small nascent signs of a renaissance in provocative art practise.


I am a visual artist and began my blog in June 2012 to reflect on my own art practise as well as to engage with the contemporary art world whenever I was able. Visiting exhibitions and looking with my ‘blogger eyes’ has helped me take a more critical and dynamic view of the artworks that I have experienced. Passing these thoughts on in my blog has been another interesting stage in this ingestive/digestive process.
My blogging has also simply been a series of reflective conversations with myself, a kind of too-ing and fro-ing internal debate which I have then externalised online. Although this has been interesting I have at times foundered when I have had little or no response to my posts. The big question of ‘Why am I doing this?’ ‘What is the point?’ ‘Is there anybody out there!’ harries and bothers me but I never quite given up! There is after all pleasure and some satisfaction in giving voice to thought and opinion… even of it is my own.


Although I perceive myself to be firstly a visual artist I have over the years of developing my critical writing found an interweaving of the two practises. Increasingly I use words in their ‘concrete’ form in the works that I make. There is play and experimentation taking place here and who knows where this may yet lead?


Maybe to the making of a pound or two...dream on dear…!

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