Tamsin Spargo – England

Tamsin Spargo’s work is concerned with relationships, memories, and human experience. She works primarily with images of the human form. Tasmin mainly works in charcoal and pastel, allowing her to build up smudges, fingerprints, and layers, and employ various methods of mark making. She also frequently uses embroidery in her work. All of her embroidery is hand sewn and intentionally has an imperfect, human quality, as she does not think that a mechanical production method and uniform appearance makes sense alongside intimate subject matter and imagery. Similarly, she works smudges and fingerprints into the work to bring an even stronger sense of humanity and intimacy.

For a few years Tamsin has been exploring weathering her work, using both human intervention and natural means, as a synonym for life experience affecting and altering the individual. She often uses embroidery as a means of repair, bringing some symbolism of optimism into the work.

Previously she worked mainly with acrylic on canvas, painting bold and colourful portraits. In September 2013 she was an artist in residence at Nes in Skagaströnd, a remote fishing village in northern Iceland. She took part in this residency because she thought that the extreme weather conditions and remote location would have a greater weathering effect on her work, and this proved to be the case, to the extent that two paintings were lost forever to the wind and sea. Following the residency she switched to deliberately damaging her work to create more extreme results.

Recently Tamsin has moved to primarily working with drawing, after feeling the need to refresh her work. She enjoys experimenting with surface and texture, but as she now works mainly on paper rather than canvas her work is much more easily damaged. Since starting to work with drawing on paper, almost all of her work has been deliberately damaged rather than left outside to weather naturally, so this residency would be a great opportunity to explore natural weathering again, in a brand new environment that offers new opportunities to experiment, and hopefully will yield new results.