Prior to the Lockdown of 2020 a small group of artist friends in Putney met regularly on Wednesday mornings in each other’s houses, or weather permitting in Richmond Park or on the Thames tow path to paint, and subsequently go for a pub lunch.
This had been working fine for many years.
Lockdown put a stop to this.
They decided that the way to continue was for one member to choose a subject each week and they should all post their results on Wednesdays on Whatsapp.
They had no collective name before Lockdown but with this new way of working from home they became the’ Wednesday Isolationists.’
Isolationism the new art movement.
During the first Lockdown my son Tom was locked down with me in Putney (he lives in Thailand). He watched with interest as my phone pinged away every Wednesday with 8 new pictures. He suggested he could make us a website and update it every week with the new pictures.
Since he returned to Thailand in September he continues to update our website. I collect all the pictures each week and send them to him via Dropbox. Please have a look at it
We are now on Week 55.
You can search the site by subject ie Seashore and see the 8 solutions we came up with. Or search by artist then you will see all our pictures.
The first few weeks were less organised when Margaret and I frequently put up more than one picture. We decided to organise and limit it, now we put one each week. There are 8 of us.
Margaret Knott says it has been a lifeline for her, and I agree.
She also says it’s what we put into it not what we get out of it that matters, it can take over and above the misery of worrying about Covid, the interpreting and ‘coping with’ the weekly subject, often outside our comfort zones.
Gil Whyman says
I enjoy the weekly discipline of thinking about a subject that someone else has set, planning and doing a painting, photographing it , whatsapping it in, then seeing how differently everyone else has interpreted it.
I didn’t think that I would enjoy it quite as much as I do, and find myself awaiting the next weeks subject with anticipation.
It’s great that everyone sets different subjects.
I find it helps to have a focus every week to concentrate on, often quite daunting when the new subject arrives, but really interesting to see how each of us solves it. It also keeps a regular contact between us.
The weekly creative focus on a joint art subject has been so beneficial to me at this time of general loneliness and fear. It also gives us a continuing social commitment to each-other as a group. Also it such fun to see the different responses to the given subject!
Wednesday Isolationists has worked on a number of levels for me. it has kept me in touch with a group of friends during Lockdown. The challenge of the weekly subject enjoyable and great to see the different ways in which the group has responded to it.
It is a useful weekly discipline, it keeps us all connected.
This venture is challenging, inspiring, therapeutic, communal, interesting, and above all huge fun. It Is a real pleasure to be part of this group.
This group has been a lovely way to keep in touch during lockdown, to see friend’s new work every week.. and keep me working! A lovely group I’m very grateful to be part of.