I enjoy papier-mache. I enjoy the whole process: ripping up the paper, diluting the glue, pasting, the mess, working out when to stop, waiting for it to dry, peeling it off the mold, fixing the edges. I like the delicacy of the finished piece. Its translucence. And yet, when you look at it, it seems solid, robust, sturdy. It’s an illusion. And I love that.
I decorated this one and I like the way it turned out.
I listened to a few podcasts today as I was driving hither and thither. One was particularly moving: it was an edition of BBC Radio 4’s Profile, about Gareth Thomas, the Welsh rugby player who recently spoke about living with HIV. Profile comprises a 15 minute pen picture of someone in the news, seen from the perspective of family, friends. colleagues and acquaintances. Its tone is sardonic but respectful.
Gareth Thomas, married, enjoying sporting success, went though a personal crisis and found himself at a crossroads. He took the plunge, made a difficult decision and came out. Speaking publicly about HIV in the last month, he said being honest about having the virus made him feel free. You never really know what people are going through, do you?