Iona Notebooks



Some Iona notes: (from original notes made in notebook on the Island, made with/to accompany/give understanding to  drawings)

I wear Iona,
she covers my Hair

cloud being gift, divided by water

Us with mouths like little wombs

Wanting to meet water, have her hold me
and I am the bird’s egg, she my nest

Bird came, bird with womb to give my consciousness

cocoon dream, with open tail…

Meeting you, O my fluttering heart
praying as a hose with a lost part…

Vein current rim curve 
Grain grit truth foot step
Field of charge around you 
belly antenna
Yak brown
thick smell of animal smooth horn suggested
veil root crystal buried
in earth, sinking, holding

Horse with flowery eyes
Calving clouds in blue

Sudden surge
and arms of sea
crows and owl arrive along the length of my body
Solitary brush and kiss of deep place plant and foam, whisp of wind presses at my back

The bee in my ear as I lose my skin, feel the flakes of the cells I am shedding brush my cheeks…


Reflections on being on Iona, 8/11/2015, written in a car park before dawn somewhere on the M6, heading south…

Iona and the authentic voice of the cells – body as instrument, vibrating, being tuned; resonance, clarity, bell-like. 
Horse, Epona, Mother, Water. Reflection.  
Body making instrument of itself, to receive, to charge, to be charged; to resonate, to chime, to grow from sensing womb that organ of penetration, that extra organ of perception – nagual bone.   
Dawn came early on the M6. I sat in the services listening to the sound of traffic – the air being torn – and I thought of the peace and beauty of Iona. At each stopping point in the night the birds were singing, mistakenly believing the orange lamps to be little suns. 


The exhibition at Terre Verte Gallery, on the edge of Bodmin Moor, runs until May 29th. I’ll be doing a workshop there, at the gallery, in the local Cathedral of the Moor, and on the Moor itself, on May 20th, 11- 4, small group, £50 each. This will also include a talk on the exhibition, a meditative walk on Bodmin Moor (very special place), a visit to the Cathedral of the Moor (sacred to St Nonna, mother of St. David),  and the process of writing the Iona Notebooks.


“Kate is a listener. She listens to her psyche and dreams and an to altogether more ancient response to the land than that which we currently know; what Thomas Carlyle described as ‘ the ancient dialect’. Her work is in part an exploration of this dialect. It explores place through archetype, symbol, the animal world and the older religions. This is home territory for Kate -she is quite comfortable in the company of the ‘Sheela’s (the Sheela na gigs).

Kate’s work isn’t easy in the sense that it neither makes assertions nor statements. It seems to be deliberately un-emphatic. The effect is to unsettle, to make us alert and create a pause. We find ourselves listening. The image that comes to me of her work is of that moment, in the stillness, when you hear a faint and tremulous bird call. You ask yourself if you even heard it (was it your imaginings?) and are silent and poised, listening for it again. You are completely present. In a review of her work art critic Laura Gascoigne gets it dead on when she says ‘It is this sense of trembling on the brink of transformation that lends Kate’s shadowy forms psychological substance’.” John MacLean, owner of Iona hostel and host to my three residencies on Iona ( a fourth is planned for next January).


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