A while ago Nicola gave a talk at Castlefield Gallery, which explicitly stated she was going to talk about her transition into becoming a full-time artist. This is something rarely spoken about, let alone publicly, and what I’m also trying to go through now. Though I wasn’t able to attend this talk, I thought it might be good to go to the source, and also to meet my mum’s favourite contemporary artist – they’re both from Manchester and both love libraries. Her recent exhibition at The Portico Library is a perfect example.
Talking with Nicola was wonderful and it really felt like we share lots of similar experiences and attitudes. Namely, what is the gamble, risk, and ultimately compulsion, of pursuing art, and the uncertainly and adrenaline of that often being a driving force. This questioning and risk-taking has taken Nicola through a wide-ranging body of work (though don’t ask her to work with paper again). She is now taking it to the stage, which as something I’ve done recently, it felt good to be able to give some advice back on, given how much she gives me throughout.