The Uses of Not (after Lao Tzu)

photo‘Between stimulus and response is a space,

In that space lies our ability to choose our response,

In that response lies our growth and freedom’.

Viktor Frankl

I love the essential tension between the inner and outer spaces we inhabit: the gap between our physical experience and our response to it. Process and the act of making in its many forms enables me to see how I feel about something. It makes the private public.

My recent works have included meditations upon, and investigations of, architectural and natural spaces that I immerse myself in. The artwork generated includes painting, sculpture, drawing, site-specific pieces and film. Using different materials and processes, the spaces unravel and find form around me, revealing their details and their idiosyncrasies.

My paintings have their own take on place and the spaces we inhabit- not just attempted renderings of landscapes, through time they become spaces of colour and varying marks to be viewed, wandered around and explored; places with their own inbuilt histories and energetic ebbs and flows.

‘Incremental II: Pilgrim Tree’- For Ellie


This tender participatory piece has been generated over the past three days by the audience writing someone or something they wish to remember, to celebrate or to let go of onto a piece of cloth. They then tie the cloth or ‘cloot’ onto the tree for the elements to take, thread by thread. In the middle of the copse is a chair, providing a place of rest or reflection.

This piece, and all the love, the release and the celebration that it has engendered, is dedicated to beautiful Ellie and family.

Not all those who wander are lost.


‘Walking has become an act of resistance in our culture of speed: the deepening of the relationship between personality, place, pace and peace becomes apparent with any sustained walk. There are rhythms thrashed out between your physical state, the nature of the terrain and the movement of the air around you: a sense of something bigger makes itself known. Our place in this place becomes what we are navigating our way through’.

Faye Dobinson, journal entry, 2013.

A walk is a means to place yourself within a landscape, to move through it and to find your pace. A walk is a means to digest life, to traverse your memories, be challenged, make peace. In our contemporary culture of speed, a walk is an act of resistance. With this in mind, I have been carving star formations into tree stumps along a rural path, using the role of star charts as an ancient means to find your way. They assist the wanderer, so that the radical act of meandering can be upheld and assisted. I am drawn to what remains after trees are cut down and cut back: the remaining branch or stump becomes a quiet vessel of time. By recording the actual constellations of stars that will be overhead throughout the art event that is ‘Diskudha’, they become repositories of memories: the macrocosm recorded upon the microcosm.

This and other works will feature in ‘Diskudha: uncover, discover, reveal’, 1st-4th April, 2015, Cornwall.

Maps are scaffolds for the imagination..

Suspended  FireballOrbits17.02.15

‘Constellations: Patterns of significance’

‘With her love of vintage maps and star charts as her starting point, London born and Cornwall based artist Faye Dobinson plays with the way that they visually present random facts and disparate pieces of information about places and huge spaces. She then generates abstract forms of her own, painting and drawing these ‘constellations’ that scatter themselves across imagined spaces.
Their titles reflect the information presented- topographical densities of flora and fauna, migratory routes of birds, internal air transport routes and Autumnal customs in Ireland.
Dobinson sees maps as scaffolds for the imagination- the mind can roam and dream unfettered, as the eye takes in the information presented.
The work presented in this show is a continuation of Dobinson’s project titled ‘All at Sea: Exhibiting chance’, which began with a Residency at The Fishermen’s Mission as part of The Newlyn Arts Festival last year. She created small artworks on maps that were then put in bottles and thrown out to sea by fishermen she met in the Mission. A message inside this ‘art in a bottle’ asked the finder to get in touch, saying where they found it. The aim of the project was to put original art pieces ‘out there’ into the world, using natural forces, not market forces: to exhibit chance.’

A new collection of work by Faye Dobinson in The Picture Room of The Newlyn Art Gallery, alongside the opening of Bloomberg New Contemporaries 2014- featuring 55 of the most promising artists emerging from UK art schools selected by Marvin Gaye Chetwynd, Enrico David and Goshka Macuga.alongside the opening of Bloomberg New Contemporaries 2014- featuring 55 of the most promising artists emerging from UK art schools selected by Marvin Gaye Chetwynd, Enrico David and Goshka Macuga. Ceramics by Michel Francois are in the Studio Café.

20th March -25th April 2015.
Opening: Friday 20th March 2015 from 6.30-7.30pm Newlyn Art Gallery, New Rd, Newlyn, TR18 5PZ.
Hours: Monday-Saturday 10-5pm. Closed Sundays.