Sunday, December 31, 2006

The Unconcerned Father

On my bicycle I knock over a ten year old boy outside his home. I take him inside to his father. The boy changes sex. The father sits quiet and passive. Another crash outside. Now the mother crawls into the house, covered in blood, the result of a more serious accident. Still the father sits unmoved posed like the statue of Abraham Lincoln.

Saturday, December 30, 2006

Anti Hazing Demo

Outside the college I see groups of naked people mingling with the clothed shoppers. It is a protest against hazing I am told. They are naked to show they have no bruises on their bodies.

Friday, December 29, 2006

Milk Advert

We are watching a complex advertising campaign to promote milk drinking. Against a backdrop of singing cartoon cows, a sexy presenter pumps up balloons and throws them into the audience, "Here we go, kids!" Each balloon has a gun printed on it.

Thursday, December 28, 2006

Unrequited Love

I have driven C's orange mini car to the top of this squatted building. Somehow with ropes and planks we now have to get it downstairs, before the builders demolish all the floors. It wasn't so hard to get it up here - it was a dream after all - so it should be easier than we think to bring it down.

Wednesday, December 27, 2006

The Windsor House Library

The chief librarian, muffled in mohair tartan, points to the exit concealed behind panels of red velvet. We shuffle out along low corridors past monstrous insects. "The books are crap here, but we love these creatures, " he tells us. Outside on a rubbish tip, a mother suckles fully clothed human rats.

Tuesday, December 26, 2006

Cyclops Head

"Jan Leeming, you have one of those faces that can so easily turn into being one-eyed.
That's not necessarily offensive."

Monday, December 25, 2006

Giant Stick Grieves For Mankind

A long one-eyed woolly stick smashes its head inconsolably in the rubble of Dagenham Dock wasteland. Its one wish for Christmas is to stop the suffering of all children around the world.

Sunday, December 24, 2006

Merry Christmas Everyone

A man with the head of a carved swede stands in a queue with his mouth wide open. He is pumped full of liquidised reconstituted chicken squeezed straight from the bottle .

Saturday, December 23, 2006

TakeThat Are Back

The group just isn't what it used to be. Ernest Shackleton and I have taken over from Gary Barlow and Jason Orange. The sound is appalling. Barry Norman shouts abuse at us from the audience. Sometimes you have to know the right time to give something up.

Friday, December 22, 2006

The Omnipresent Therapist

Sue my former psychotherapist yawns as I play to her on the recorder. "I thought it would be a good idea to see you again," I explain. "...sometimes I feel a bit low...I feel I could just...not all the time of fact often I feel fine...I mean...well...I'm on my own you see...Still."

Thursday, December 21, 2006

The Silver Jaguar

After running a course at a college I have a long arduous journey home and get ready early. I look out of the window and see Dad has driven 160 miles to collect me. I am very touched that he has travelled so far and run down to embrace him.

Wednesday, December 20, 2006

Lazy Christian

"Look, I am not going to tell you that you should not express your religious convictions in your work," I say to a sullen student. "But there has to be an element of danger. It should be like the Devil tempting Christ in the wilderness. I want to see you battling it out. It has to be real."

Tuesday, December 19, 2006

The Hopeless Policeman

I tell a young police officer that I saw an attack on a man on the Brixton to Streatham train. He laughs nervously, "Did he shit himself?"
"He was bleeding,"I reply feeling helpless.
"If he didn't shit himself I can't do anything about it," he says swinging his truncheon.

Monday, December 18, 2006

A Changed Man

On a huge video billboard I see TJ the boy I was first in love with three decades ago. From his young brother I hear all about his life to date, that he is now a teacher on meagre wages. He omits to add that TJ is now a beautiful young woman.

Sunday, December 17, 2006

The Mountain Top

Half way up a mountain I begin to speak my dream but it doesn't come across in the right way. I climb to the top of the mountain and from there I find a depth to my voice and the dream rings out strong and clear.

Saturday, December 16, 2006

Severed Head

A snake's head is presented.

Friday, December 15, 2006

Dressing Up As Icons

As each guest enters the party they are asked to dress a dummy as a famous icon and animate it. Ed wraps it in a sheet and it becomes a life size version of a Sindy doll. A woman with facial hair becomes a combination of George Sand and Eric Burden.

Thursday, December 14, 2006

Looking For Dream Objects

In the corner of a dark room is a glass fronted cupboard. I look inside for dream imagery. It is empty except for a model of a galleon on the top shelf.

Wednesday, December 13, 2006

Warning Disregarded

My attention is drawn to a horror film which shows a huge animated house going on the rampage. Although it is causing terrible havoc it has an innocence about it like a scared King Kong. I ignore the call to watch this film claiming that I have seen it before.

Tuesday, December 12, 2006

Black Thoughts

We are required to write down our three worst features. In a ritualistic dance these negative statements materialise into a viscous black cloud that I am juggling in front of my eyes.

Monday, December 11, 2006

Frog Swarm

The air is thick with tiny frogs. I try to swat them before they land on my body.

Sunday, December 10, 2006

Impossible To Blag

Three men are here to listen to the pianist and clarinettist. My role is to turn pages, something I haven't done for years. By the second page I am completely lost and miss my queue. One of the men stops the procedings. He points to something on the bass clef line. "What note is this?" I am not sure...a "C"? "I thought as much," he says, "Please leave now."

Saturday, December 09, 2006

Car Journey In The Woods

We are driving through a thick forest along a track overgrown with weeds. Hazel tells us to duck when the branches are very low and we will be fine. I decide to ride on the roof of the car but soon regret it as I am wearing shorts and the stinging nettles whip my thighs.

Friday, December 08, 2006

Death Of My Partner Nate

As Nate (from Six Feet Under) dies, a dull photocopy of his image slowly shrinks away into the night sky. Sobbing crocodile tears I lie to some old acquaintances about the time of his death claiming that I have been in no fit state to visit them.

Thursday, December 07, 2006

Modern Family Unit

A TV documentary shows an old soap star reunited after ten years with his soap family of wife and three daughters. We watch as they drink to his real life adoption programme. Celebrations are premature as he has not yet been accepted by the authorities as a suitable parent.

Wednesday, December 06, 2006

Rookie Police Officers

I am undergoing an experimental police training programme which involves expressive movement. The superintendent (who used to be on The Bill) insists we all group hug and greet each other with a friendly kiss. I join in very reluctantly.

Tuesday, December 05, 2006

No Good As A Manager

"We will be reviewing your pay," my employer says to me, "We have to make cuts."
"But we run all kinds of exciting projects don't we?" I answer. "Speak up for me, Anne."
"Well Robin," Anne replies hesitantly,"You can never replace Philippa...There I've said it... but you forced me to. You're too disorganised. You're no good as a manager."

Monday, December 04, 2006

Elemental Drawing

I am looking for little discarded objects like buttons to draw. The visiting artist draws seeds. "Did you always make work that starts from such small basic elements?" I ask her, thinking that I am probably on the wrong track with my subject matter.

Sunday, December 03, 2006

Backstage Fear

Once again I am waiting in the wings of a theatre. Because I had been so dismissive of this play in rehearsals I didn't learn my lines properly and now I can't remember what my lines are or when I go onstage. If I can only find them I am sure the rest will fall into place. I search frantically for the script.

Saturday, December 02, 2006

Naked Walk

It is a cold winter's day. Ian is taking me downstairs to an outdoor swimming pool. There are a lot of people about, dressed in warm clothes. I am completely naked.

Friday, December 01, 2006

Kev Returns From The Dead

I had expected never to see him again. He has returned as a young boy with an incurable mental illness which will grow steadily worse. There is no-one else to care for him. My heart sinks as I lie on the bed with him. The dead weight of his arm is heavy on my shoulder.

Thursday, November 30, 2006

My Girlfriend's Funeral

The service is to take place in an old Nissen hut. We strip old paint from the exterior and I insist we paint the guttering a bright orange. The bullish youth leader wants to turn the whole event into a football match. I am livid. She was my girlfriend so I am the one to decide.
I threaten to call the police.

Wednesday, November 29, 2006

Rightful Praise

A cleaner is picking up scraps of rubbish on the stage at the Royal Vauxhall Tavern. Every time he places something in the bin bag there is rapturous applause from the audience.

Tuesday, November 28, 2006

Inept Actor

I am playing a part in a Shakespearean play. I have already missed one cue in the first act, and have lost half my costume. Now I am frantically searching for a script to check my lines.
"Don't worry so much about it," one actor advises me, "Relax and the words will come."
I run into the courtyard and scream, "NO! I don't know when I come on. I am not doing it. I can't remember ANYTHING."

Monday, November 27, 2006

Light Dance

Tor and I are dancing in the conservatory, twirling ropes of lights around us. The lights spin so fast we seem to almost dissolve. As we slow the movement down I steady Tor to stop her falling.

Sunday, November 26, 2006

The Drawing That Revealed Too Much

I meet a trendy couple in Paris who ask me to draw their portrait. I make a delicate collaged image which records all of my thoughts- a drawing with my internal soundtrack. When I play it back to them, my recorded inner voice is moaning at the irritating woman, "Stop complaining all the time. Please just shut up for god's sake".

Saturday, November 25, 2006

Surprise Party

There is a knock at the door. A group of six mummers are led in and then smartly directed out through the side window. Another knock. This time a longer line of people pour in. I recognise them as acquaintances from my past who I have no desire to see again.

Friday, November 24, 2006

A Man Called Heffa

I meet a beautiful man. We are strongly attracted to each other and kiss passionately. I notice his face is covered in acne and his lips are cracked and bloody. Still he seems beautiful to me. I can see myself loving this man for the rest of my life.

Thursday, November 23, 2006

Unusual Exhibition Ticket

We are all a little drunk. I have a slice of cucumber in my pocket left over from last night's dinner party. Fionna suggests it would make a great entrance ticket for my twelve month show at the Dock. We are hysterical with giggles at the idea of everyone having to keep a cucumber slice in their wallet for a whole year.

Wednesday, November 22, 2006

The Teddies Are Chucked Out

In a clear-out session Dad has dumped Edward, Big Ted and Judy in a rubbish cart. I am furious and rant at Mum. She says with a tired voice, "But, dear, your father fought in the Second World War for you." I am not sure this is strictly true but acknowledge that I need to keep things in proportion.

Tuesday, November 21, 2006

Table Of Assaults

Arranged neatly on the table are all the stones and other missiles that have been thrown at the young man during his life.

Monday, November 20, 2006


It is 2 or 3 am. Someone is kicking in my front door while I am looking at nuts and bolts. I try to scream to frighten them off but no sound comes. I am terrified.

Sunday, November 19, 2006

The Lost Bag

I am about to give a talk about my work but I have left my bag at the hotel. I rush back to the foyer to find it is full of bags identical to mine. When I eventually return to the lecture hall half of the audience has already walked out.

Saturday, November 18, 2006

If All Else Fails

If the country falls apart, and there are no jobs on the tills at Sainsbury's, I can always resort to selling my own brand of handmade porn - biro scratched sex animations or plastecine erotica.

Friday, November 17, 2006

The Blue Dress

I have bought my girlfriend a tiny minidress as a present. While she is in the bathroom I squeeze into it only just getting my shoulder in before she enters the room. "Wow, that is a beautiful dress," she says. "It is for you," I say kissing her. She is naturally thrilled.

Thursday, November 16, 2006

The Mutating Sponsor

As we move from saloon to public bar our benefactor appears in pairs, morphing every second from Marina Abramovic to David Aaronovicz to David Wojnarowicz to Daniela Nardini. It is as if I am visualising the process of searching for the right name.

Wednesday, November 15, 2006

Bears Are Not Pets

There is a grizzly bear in the back yard. He seems friendly enough. I teach him some dance moves. When I return later with my camcorder six huge surly bears have joined him. They eventually leave snarling, but my grizzly remains. He is now wearing shades and looks really mean and unpredictable. I give up on the idea of filming him.

Tuesday, November 14, 2006

Wrong Focus

Alice, Hazel and I watch a fashion parade of grim second hand clothes. We assume our role is to buy some of the garments. Too late I realise we have made a mistake and that in fact, tomorrow, we are expected to identify one of the 50 odd models who have paraded in front of us.

Monday, November 13, 2006

Shunned By Film Star

A magician appears to grow Gwyneth Paltrow from a strand of hair. Later I find the trick, which is a kind of wig, and playfully place it on Gwyneth P's head as she conceals the rest of her body behind a black curtain. She pushes me away irritatedly- I am not her friend and she does not wish me to come so close.

Sunday, November 12, 2006

Limited Choice

A young Philippino man is being hounded by the police and press. His only possible choice is to seek refuge with his family who shunned him years ago. Trembling he looks in through the front window at his family. Will they shelter him or abuse him more violently than the state?