‘Hide and Seek : Duck Fishing' is a diptych comprising of two glazed boxed etching print constructions. The work is intended to reflect a personal response to the complex emotions of Nostalgia in respect of lost childhood. Nostalgia evokes a small amount of happiness at recalling fond memories of childhood, yet for me positive feelings are often outnumbered by crippling emotions of sadness, longing, and fear of forgetting or losing the past. The inspiration is derived from personal memories associated with childhood games. 'Hide and Seek' is intended to capture memories of den building in the woods, in abandoned sheds or boat houses; a game of ‘ chicken’, ‘sardines’ or ‘murder in the dark’. It is also centered around memories of forming secret societies, clubs and passwords, and the excitement of experiencing freedom or danger away from the safe protective home environment. 'Duck Fishing' is intended to reflect indoor activities undertaken during long wet summers when entire utopian cities were constructed on the bedroom floor from anything at hand. A shortage of Lego was compensated for with an old shoe box, and plasticine replaced fiddly nuts and bolts of a meccano set as a faster less frustrating way of holding things together.
The Royal Ulster Academy 136th Annual Exhibition had 1801 submissions from 20 countries. In addition to members work, 168 artists were selected from countries across Europe, USA and UK through the open submission process. I was an invited artist in the exhibition, delivered an illustrated lecture on Printmaking at The Ulster Museum, and taught two public etching masterclasses at The Ulster Museum, and The RUA