Juan Ford

29 Apr 2020

During the covid-19 lockdown we will be keeping you updated with new works and insights into our artists’ practice, process & inspiration…

Fill us in on what you are working on at the moment.. either before or during isolation

I have been working on a new series, a real change, to go with these altered times. I’m painting each and every creature mentioned in Jorge Luis Borges’ bestiary; ‘The Book of Imaginary Beings’

It’s a challenging and fantastical project that keeps me tightly focused during this period.

Being an artist is usually a solitary pursuit – do you have one tip or trick for people who are new to WFH, to stay motivated each day?

Yes, always treat your practice as you would when working for someone else- I.E. be professional, committed, efficient and smart, never give in to laziness. That doesn’t mean you can’t have fun or lose yourself though. This is also vital.

Also, have something that you can indulge in a bit, be it music, podcasts of whatever takes your fancy. I’m a longtime fan of podcasts and audiobooks.

What are you watching, listening to, looking at …

Currently I’m indulging in podcasts and books that spirit me away from current affairs. I don’t want to be reminded constantly of the pandemic.

I recently finished an astonishing hard sci fi trilogy by Chinese author Cixin Liu. It’s epic, and up there with the greatest sci fi ever written.

If there is one good thing, be it personal or in general, that you hope to come out of this, what would it be?

I hope that we take a deep breath, and appreciate the clean air and skies that have been generated as a result our collective inactivity. The clean air and sky that nature has provided us. I hope this gives us pause, that we realise that all the mad dashing about for resources and tourism, the frenzied economic activity, the outrageous polluting for short term profit; I hope we see it for what it is: a form of collective insanity.

I truly hope we don’t go back to voracious pillaging of the planet. I hope Gaia prevents us from continuing that madness.

I hope we realise what matters: The natural world, and the relationships we have with one another.

This idealism of mine has underpinned all my work. It doesn’t seem so unreasonable anymore.