Emma Critchley’s Residency – Week 1 Blog Post

British, London-based artist Emma Critchley shares a post about her first week in residence at Fresh Milk. A mixture of familiar and unfamiliar experiences have coloured the start of her residency, as she has returned to an old love of diving and the ocean, but doing so in Barbados, which is new territory for her. She has been exploring shores and wrecks, collecting film and photographic material above and below the sea’s surface which she will continue to develop over the coming weeks. Read more below:

The Bajan Queen

This week has been a week of acquainting and reacquainting
Acquainting myself with this beautiful island
Recceing on land and in the sea
Finding places that inspire me, where I will return to make work and finding people who will get me there:

Reacquainting myself with the sea; a place where I feel at home, happy
Although I’ve not dived Bajan waters before there is something about being in the ocean that’s like an old familiar friend, a place I already know, have always known

Twice to Carlisle Bay – a walk off the beach into the blue where wrecks await us. Cement, wood, steel. Un-wanted vessels, chambers of histories that have been laid to rest; Barge (16 years), Corn Wallis (16 years), The Bajan Queen (14 years), Ellion (20 years), Ce -Trek (40 years), Berwyn (87 years)

Another shore dive off the coast of Speightstown to trim the weighting for my new underwater film equipment. A test that turned into a dive … for 70 minutes … in search of a wreck that we never found …

Sunday’s ‘two wreck challenge’ with “Badass’n”, the Barbados Dive Association. An opportunity to recce two more wrecks

Off the side of the boat 18 divers descended over a small wreck like predators picking over a carcass. Photographing, catching, probing …

Together we headed out into the blue in search of the Pamir – a sunken 170ft freighter that was to be our destination. After 30 minutes swimming headlong into the current its majestic figure finally emerged out of the darkness. But we had reached the end of air. Our time was up and we had to return to the surface. A wreck to be explored again

Animal Flower Cave, a beautiful coastal cave with sea pool over looking the rugged north coast. A natural limestone chamber carved out by the Atlantic elements … another place to return to

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