As we come to the end of our fourth full week of lockdown, with the whole team working from home, we have been reflecting on this extraordinary collective experience. Our thoughts continue to be with those most acutely affected. It has been very moving to see how individuals and communities have responded to the crisis; the reserves of empathy, imagination and resilience that we can draw on. Arundhati Roy wrote brilliantly in the FT two weeks ago, describing the pandemic as ‘a portal’ that we can ‘walk through lightly, with little luggage, ready to imagine a new world. And ready to fight for it.’ Listening to the words of 99-year old Captain Tom Moore, completing his one hundred laps of his garden to raise funds for the NHS, moved me to tears yesterday, not least for his quiet determination, his humanity and gentle spirit of optimism for the future.
Over the last few weeks we have been working collaboratively with artists and galleries to launch two new strands of digital content, in place of our usual programme of talks, studio visits and study days. To ensure you don’t miss anything, we are launching the #CASatHome banner, under which all of these will sit.
Every Wednesday at midday we are releasing one of the best single channel moving image works we have donated to museums both historically and in recent years. These are available for 72 hours only, from noon on Wednesday to noon on Saturday and are shown by special permission of the artist.
On Fridays in place of our Friday Dispatch we interview artists in their studios or homes and discover how they are working during this crisis. Artists so far in date order have included Gaia Fugazza, Alison Britton and Lubna Chowdhary. If you missed any of these, the interviews are on our website HERE.
Earlier this week I spoke to Phyllida Barlow CBE RA in her studio at home in North London to discuss the lockdown and her work. Phyllida has a perspective that encompasses four decades of teaching and national accolades including representing Britain at the Venice Biennale, as well as bringing up a family. It was a privilege to spend time with her and to have her share her wisdom with us.
Stay safe, everyone