Bella Li is a poet and visual artist. Her craft is impeccable and beautiful. Her 'way' is warm, witty, light, serious, penetrating, evocative. She is a good friend, and when she asked if she could launch her latest book - Lost Lake (Vagabond Press, 2018) - at the studio, it led to one of the most fruitful half hours in memory, as we plotted a collaboration. The eventuation of this was a sunny Sunday afternoon launch, and an exhibition called 'House, floating' (part of the 2018 Craft Cubed program). Bella had a selection of images from her book printed for display and I created a series of objects mimicking or inspired by those found in the pages of Lost Lake. I've just posted images of some of the work. Most were made using papier-mâché techniques although there are a couple of soft textile objects, too.
I'm not a patient person but I really enjoy slow labour crafts. I listened to 'A Little Life' while making these pieces, which is an extremely long book. I learnt a little about Chinese guardian lions (also known, perhaps inappropriately, as 'Foo' or 'Fu dogs'), although there is conflicting information about them, which I may have passed on to various of the studio's visitors. I learnt that octagons are hard won. I thought a lot about my art practice, worried that it is too diverse, had many moments of glee.