This is one of the images from incidents I activated in my studio in Cardiff shortly after visiting the Tannery at St Fagans with the Rhod Group. This incident may lead to working with Penny Jones’s dog as our show progresses!

“Getting down and dirty” identifies my infatuation with job specific process – materials,tools and methods. The imagery and processes represented in my posts will form the backbone of my research into laying down a proposition that will make itself available for manipulation by, with or in spite of the artists within the group !!                  David Shepherd January 2012

Tannery kid


Dragging backwards and forwards.Soak in water. Lime bath treatment loosing the hair and removing the flesh. Stacking and layering the hides. Scrub House. Brewing the mixture. Lasagne. A decent amount of tannin. Remember now – green salted, dry salted, and dry. Cats eat bits of flesh. Enormous sandwich in the tan yard.Polythene sacks.The dogs. (Story of leather – Sara Ware Bassett)

Llusgo yn ol ac ymlaen socian mewn dwr. Triniaeth bath Calch colli gwallta chael gwaled a chael ar y cnawd. Stacio a haenu y chrwyn.Prysgwydd House. Bragu y cymysgedd. Lasagne. Mae swm gweddus o tannin. Cofiwch awr – gwyrdd wedi’u halltu, halltu sych, ac yn sych. Cats bwyta darnau o gig. Brechdan enfawr yn yr iardlliw haul. Sachau polythen. Y cwm. (Mae stori lledr Sara Ware Bassett)



Progressing Imagery (with lime mortar).       Throughout the duration of the show (and beyond) I will continue to work on three other sites in Cardiff in between visits to the Tannery. I will endeavour to relate to the renovated architectural aspects of the building by working on my own garden wall. The preparation of lime putty will mean that this will occur at a later date!



Progressing Imagery (with lime mortar and more)     When the Clothes Rack was erected in the Gallery (with the hanging devices) it immediately became a depository for all sorts of paraphernalia as well as coats and clothing ……. it was always in my mind that it would operate in this manner and it will remain one of the focuses of my attention as things progress …………….


Work in a Cardiff location as I prepare to pack ‘stuff’ to take to the Tannery.

Down Dirty

Working in a Cardiff location with some of the 500 bath towels that are part of an ongoing event at Melin Glonc ……….


Amongst the chaos and wild dynamic of the first day – working collectively with the group and Peter I was able to isolate moments of a very personal selective nature!

Window Rack

This window is particularly interesting from both inside and out particularly with the rack placed very close to the wall ! I will spend some time working with this on my next visit to the Tannery

Peter with Rack

It has always been part of my process to capture incidents that are constructed directly through the lens of the camera … so I will be posting snap shots that represent documentation and material for future works as well as more considered ‘compositions’


Installation at the Mill

The statement below is from my website and describes the essence of my work as an artist … hence the inclusion of the archived work above that is an incident from my current work as Artist in residence at Melin Glonc. The wet dirty towels are in the Tannery show …………..


An arena for identifying images derived from “job specific” activity that interfaces with the past, present and (future) by way of a reclamation and re-presentation process.

Home studio with curious cat


Studio work













2 thoughts on “.. GETTING DOWN AND DIRTY (“Bark”)

  1. Hair, Straw and Other Fibres
    Although used extensively in lime and earth plasters to reduce the effects of shrinkage, fibre is not usually added to mortar for pointing, as shrinkage across the relatively small area of a masonry joint can be accommodated more easily. However, fibres such as ox hair are sometimes found in old mortars and may be used where historically appropriate.

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