Exercise Three // John Abell

May 13 2020
Hi  John,   to kick off exercise one,  where are you? 

I am currently sitting on my setee in my living room, with Pitw the cat on my lap. 


How has your process changed since staying at home?

I've painted less than normal, I made a few paintings in my living room but got progressively more frustrated with the limitations, and then switched to other aspects of my practise and started making lots of relief prints and intaglio, spending a lot of time on them outside in the unseasonal sunshine of the covid spring! 


What's last or current song you listened to (no cheating, we all have naughty


 Mars by Television


and the last or current show/film/video you watched ?
 I rewatched Midsommar last night, I'm a very big fan of horror, folk horror in particular, and I have come to realise that film was probably quite a big influence on some of my  paintings that came after it.


What are you reading right now?
 The Visions of Isobel Gowdie, an amazing piece of psychedelic writing, it was a confession given without the use of torture in Scotland in the early modern witchcraft trials.


What’s the last thing you cooked? (recipes welcome!)

 Pasta with aubergine, very simple very tasty and comforting. Love an aubergine.


 What's the next thing you are going to cook?

The reduced sainsbury finest pizza I found on my shopping trip this afternoon.


If everything in your house was going to be the same colour what colour

would you choose?
 That's definitely an extreme interior design choice, a totally monochromatic abode, but probably turquoise because it's like the sea and a forest at the same time.
Which words or phrases do you most overuse  ?

Probably iesu Mawr or chwarae teg.

Do you have any superstitions?

 I think me and my cats speak to each other telepathically.


What makes you laugh (feel free to share any videos, memes, record a

joke, your pet)
 Pretty much everything to be honest, particularly at the moment, I've got quite a gallows sense of humour.


 Which artist-living or dead would you like to share your quarantine practice with? Why?

 Ernst Ludwig Kirchner as long as he's sober.  


Exercise 2

Write a drawing prompt you would like someone else to receive:

 Make an image based on your favourite album.


We are probably going to get through a lot of these homework sheets - so

write a question for other people that you want to know the answer to ? 

Has this been a time where you've consumed more culture than normal? There's no doubt I've read more than normal, watched more films and looked into things into more detail, gone down a fair few rabbit holes in quarantine, and am wondering if others have done the same! 


We are putting together a mixtape -  what’s your go to song for dancing ?

Fantastic Man by William Onyeabor
being in the studio ?
Search and Destroy by The Stooges

chilling out ?
(It's All Over Now) Baby Blue by the 13th Floor Elevators

falling in love ?
Peggy Sue by Buddy Holly


For  Exercise Three, we ask our artists to  pick one of the following subjects as a starting point to make some work using an A5 piece of paper/cloth/whatever you like to the size  with no restriction on media. These will be published on our website and available for £110 each.

  1. Still life: pick 3 items from your surrounding and recreate them

  2. Draw the last text you received/Page 15 from a book you are currently reading 7th sentence down

  3. Draw the last exhibition you saw/in style of the last exhibition you saw


 Check out John's Exercise Three pieces here