At the beginning of this year I started working on a project entitled 'Give My Head Peace'; exploring conflict and how this manifests in our everyday lives. I find the omnipresence of conflict fascinating, once you start looking for it you realise that it's everywhere, from war torn countries to the complicated landscapes inside our heads. The juxtaposition of human inflicted problems against the often nurturing properties of nature absorbs me further still.
Growing up in Northern Ireland has clearly had an enormous effect on how I view this subject matter, and I'm looking forward to a research trip there in August. Meantime I've set my sights on a patch of land a bit closer to my current home in East Sussex; part nature reserve, part nuclear power station. I find Dungeness to be a strange, ineffable sort of place that I can hardly believe exists.
I spent a gloriously sunny and wind swept day there, expecting to be overwhelmed by the beauty of the protected wetlands with their prolific birds. Instead I could not take my eyes off the plethora of electricity pylons that emerge majestically from the power station and dot themselves with great stature across the landscape. I was moved by the way they rose from great fields of yellow and green, a mark of how man embeds himself in and lives, sometimes precariously, alongside the natural world.
I took my trusty tiny battery operated sewing machine with me and commenced studies that have started to morph into a body of work influenced by this powerful, haunting place.
Janey grew up in Northern Ireland surrounded by guns and potatoes. Out of this conflicted experience she came to believe that there are three main important life lessons: freedom to express what lies within you is the ultimate gift; everything in this universe is connected; you must learn to accept that life is a great mystery. She has two sons called Finn and Paddy, and she enjoys taking them on adventures.