ARTISTS

DAVID WILLETTS

     

GEDLING COLLIERY.

Pencil, Wax crayon, pastel, ink. Various sizes,  A4, A5.

These drawings were made sometime in the 70s when I was teaching at the then Nottingham Art College. Arrangements were made to visit the Colliery for a short period, including time at the coal face.
I was intrigued to find the drawings hidden away after such a long period and I felt, given that this Mine and the Industry as a whole has gone, that it was a fitting time and of interest generally for them to be seen, and our monthly gallery seemed the right opportunity to show them.
Unlike some other subjects that I work from this one has disappeared almost totally. As an Industry it was so much a part of the National psyche that its passing is still an open wound for many and is now a part of the political mythology of those times. A period in Industrial British History that is gone for ever.
 The drawings are a now a record of that lost world.They are also as it happens important to me because of the interest I have in collections of work concerned with the passage of time, which in this case is also no longer even possible to repeat. At the time I was inspired by the dynamics of the activity and wanted to keep as close as I could to first hand, direct, on the move, sensations. An experience of the whole rather than one aspect or a finished painting They are a collection of drawings containing something of the speed of its happening, live and  having a sense of the drama and duration of moving from one location to another. To maintain this immediacy I have not touched or altered them, they exist as they were when they happened.
They are divided into groups covering all the areas related to the site. 1, The slower surface exteriors, 2, The office, 3, portraits. 4, The journey to the face. 5, The face. 6, The bathhouse.

David Willetts, February, 2013.