JO TOMLINSON: Self-Directed Residency, 2015

On Sat 14th of March it was a ridiculously sunny day. I was excited to start my residency at the bothy and get off grid. I arrived at Inshriach farm where I was warmly welcomed by Walter and some canine pals. I knew it was going to be a good week.


Slowing down and following my own rhythm was my main intention for the week. I was looking forward to stripping back the layers of communication we are tied to everyday and tuning into a solely internal one. Concentrating on one thought at a time. I aimed for my experiences and natural thought process to guide me through the week, free of external stimuli.

I was interested to gain perspective not only on my work but my approach to living and considering this within a current project I was developing DETERMINATION/67p/22F

Although I had a good combination of company and solitude throughout the week,  it was the days of solitude that intrigued me the most. Would being alone change the way I spent my time, my creative outputs, would I explore more, or would I retreat to the familiar parameters of the Bothy? Is the desire to explore new territory strongest as an individual or inspired through a group consensus?

“I think we live in a world that’s very much complied of fragments – fragments of information and experience. We process these and each of us synthesis together to create our own views on things”

Doug Aitken, Its All About The Process 2012




I had the opportunity to just be, where staring into space was totally acceptable.


My connection to the sun and water became very apparent, there was nothing blocking this relationship, like buildings, routines, pressure to be doing something and everything.





sand scum3


Water, as it changed in form seemed to be a prominent reoccurring theme to my week.

I took footage for a new video work, I drew, I set up assemblages, I painted with red wine and lemons and avocados.







I thought a lot about the determination of nature and of human exploration and why we explore. I couldn’t seem to find myself at a loose end, always entertained by the visual feast of forms around me from foamy river scum to my first shooting star and a solar eclipse.





Solar Eclipse 20th March around 9.55am




clearing1The Bothy is a truly amazing place to stop, reconnect with yourself, get back to basics and develop ideas.

Thanks so much to Walter, Rachel Walker and The Bothy Project.