'The Good Cry', April 2020

12" x 24"

I often look at old stained glass windows which have been broken and repaired many times over the centuries. There’s a poignancy about those gentle faces which have been cracked (maybe deliberately) and then patched up.

When I started on this piece, I wanted to use that kind of imagery to explore thoughts about crying, in particular why men don’t cry as much as women. I wanted to include a reference to the harshness of life, with rough, graffiti-daubed walls and storm clouds overhead.

As time went on, and the Coronavirus came to affect us all, I felt the need to change direction a little. I decided to focus more on the universal need to cry, on the power of kindness and compassion and on how crying is healthy, hence the title ‘The Good Cry’.

I include a singing bird perched on a digital sound wave, because their songs are often lost in today’s noisy world and the beauty and fragility of birdsong often makes me cry.

There’s a radio, as music has that extraordinary power to brings tears, some butterflies caught in a net, suggesting the feeling you get in your stomach when you feel sad, a glass of wine and box of 'Mansize' hankies.

Some of the patterned glass is made using two contrasting layers of sandblasted glass and there are glass beads around the heads of the figures like halos. The stars signify hope.