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Watching

The Unwinding Series

A long soft breath out as if exhaling away my African soul; I see smoke.

“Pleased to meet you England!” Today, on these new shores I breathe away all of which is already written and breathe in a new chapter. Dreams and hopes from a far away place, only days ago, seemingly gone but for the moment.

Cold. Stinging on the skin. Emotionally sore. The fibres begging a weary mind for help; All I have left to give is heart.

The mist just sits there. Watching. Foggy walls blanket all natures distractions. My only focus now is the game.
The game of a new language; a new system, new rules. I am anxious. Anxious because I haven’t yet the voice to reason nor the savvy to challenge the rules …I guess I’ll just have to take the hits.

I invoke the spirits of the ages. The many voices who have gone before me. In exchange for my time they had left me parables; words woven so deep within they would only loosen when I needed them most. Yet still from those darkened corners, even as I plead, silence.

I begin to hear the sounds of Africa. Low rumblings on the Earth, like a stampede. Through the damp haze, boots, at least 10 pairs, run at me…

“Tackle him… OI BAMIN …get him!”

I stand still and wait for the perfect time to steal the ball … alone, and head to head, ‘crack’, I received my blessing!

“Yeahhhhh well done Bamin, great effort”

The team pull me up from the earth and back to reality… The pain in my face and ache in the shoulders seem irrelevant as my hair is tussled by many hands; a mighty pat on the back, though still sore, seems to make it alright! I conclude that tackling means taking a hit.

“More like that mate”

Not sure if the compliment was for me or the wildebeest, either way, everybody was smiling.

Unwinding

The line is cast out into the unknown… The shell that has been my cocoon for 11 years starts to crack. When rock fishing, shells are broken with stones to release the bait for the hook. The left-over fragments, mere fodder, are tossed near the cast line. The innards from a creature once so innocent, send signals to the prey. The baited hook becomes a beacon to entice the catch; it is at this very point the test of a fisherman can truly begin.

My carapace cracks. Fear and fragments are released. Bait for the test.
As I unwind into the unknown, the foray into self belief can begin. Practise, Practise, Practise to survive. Tears of fear and sweat run over the contours of my chapped lips. Droplets of diluted blood mark the field. The English Earth and I become one; elected as the keeper of my secrets, my hopes, my dreams.

“…MINE!!!”
“I SAID MINE!!!”

The dreams of one are the nightmares of another…

They say that some friendships meet your needs and some friendships do not come about by words…
“You can’t pass it forward Bamin; just stay behind me and I’ll show you okay”!

All expectations, hopes and fears are thrown and tossed about on the pitch. They float around, bob up-and-down until they draw interest.

“OOMPH”!

“You there, Yes you; all ok? Here a moment…
Mr Agar. I have heard from the other boys that he is a legend …a wicked bowler… whatever a wicked bowler is.
…is this your first game of rugby lad? Be sure to show up at practise on Saturday”
“Yeah sa!”

We leave the frost and head back toward the grey changing rooms. Natural light streams through the large single paned windows as we charge inside seeking heat. The only warmth it seems, emanate from the ocre in the wooden benches. Studs smash against the cold concrete floor while the aluminium lockers are dented further. Voices of who-did-what all blend into soporific notes. I sit and watch only to discover that stamping the floor can loosen the mud while locker space staves confusion over kit mix ups.

Taking my time, most had already showered and dressed, I peel away the remaining soil from my new boots, lost in wonderment. Voices slowly disperse down the hall and beyond changing room doors.

“You need to get a move on if you’re going to make French”
The clothes go on quickly over my shorts. I wipe down my face and limbs with the only dry thing to hand, my school jumper! Nobody will know any way as the dirt seems to blend in nicely.

During supper, conversations still abound about who played the best and future team selections. Meanwhile, I’m lost in my plate of something I don’t quite recognise.

“Shower before lights out!” comes the call.
We gather our washbags and with the odd bit of earth on my skin now hardened and flaky, my stiff crinkly knees attempt keep up with a few other stragglers. One lad is from Singapore, second year, but speaks English as good as any local. He knows everything and seems to understand the system very well. As we rush through the doors of the gym changing-rooms, the taller boys leap up to touch some pipework… this must be an English tradition.

The showers come on at the push of a button. There’s limited time before it pops back out again turning the water off. Initially it seems quite good fun but soon I realise it is not. Through the moans I understand what the pipework rubbing was for… no hot water.

As the remaining bits of soil are washed away in stops and starts, the pristine white floor-tiles turn muddy. I stare at my brown feet and watch in wonder… not too long ago that was sand underfoot. I have a go at scrubbing my knees but it’s tricky; they’re sore and the water’s not inviting. Late to the shower-rooms, I learn, means missing out on a blast of heat …next time I’ll get there earlier! None the less, we laugh, we talk through the echos; and soap, I discover, is not as cool as shower gel…whatever that is…

“Hey Lee, what’s a tosser???”


Acrylic on Canvas
508 x 406 x 38mm (unframed)
Canvas is triple primed 100% quality cotton all wrapped around kiln-dried A+ solid pine timber.
Varnished

© 2020 Pierre Bamin – All Rights


£500

Available for purchase. Price excludes P&P
Please send me your queries

Slide AVAILABLE This painting is still available for purchase
If you wish to own an open edition print,
or would like to discuss a commissioned piece, please contact me with you details.
CLICK HERE
Categories
Blog Paintings

TONY

…wiv a Cockney twang:

Barbara (Tony’s wife), showing him the video clip for the first time
Tony – “…thas me that is!”
Aunty Pat – “No it’s not, it’s James Dean!”

Watercolour on Illustration Board
20 x 30 cm
Painted in monochrome

“You are a gentleman and a scholar sir
…and there’s not many of us left!”

The highlight of creating art is not the work itself, but the moment it evokes emotion. The point where art connects to the soul of the viewer; bringing together the past, present and future.

Although no words are written, it is constant dialogue, captured in a single frame.


Available for private commissions
Please contact me with your queries

Categories
Blog Paintings

Floating on the Walls

There are treasures to be taken away from this country which has not yet found an interpreter equal to the abundance of riches which it displays

Paul Cézanne

Floating on the Walls

Acrylic on Canvas
23 x 30.5 x 3.5cm (unframed)

© Pierre Bamin 2019. All Rights

Read ‘The Rock’ narrative


£180

Please contact me with your print or license queries

Slide SOLD Unfortunately this piece is no longer available for purchase
If you wish to own an open edition print,
or would like to discuss a commissioned piece, please contact me with you details.
CLICK HERE
Categories
Blog Paintings

Line is Cast

Many years ago, I was fishing off a rock when a lowly canoe pulled up alongside.  The fisherman, his name Mohamed, asked me to help steady him in as he dismounted amongst the rocks and rolling water.  His catch was being delivered to the local club some meters behind me.  As we dragged in, I couldn’t help but remark on his catch of barracuda and grouper (about eight in total) every one of them HUGE.

I offered to swap my three snappers for the one with the biggest teeth… a brief pause between his laughter, he said,

We a dɔn go lɛf dɛn wan ya, a de kam chich you fayn genjin
After I’ve dropped these off, I’m going to teach you a really good rig

Missing Link

I continued to barter hard as he unloaded, finding every excuse to at least hold a catch that was nearly the same size as me. None the less, a deal was set; I was charged with looking after Mohamed’s canoe and in return he was going to grant me enlightenment; guiding my pathway to legendary status in the Aberdeen area of Freetown. This genjin was my evolutionary bridge, the one that would most probably change my life permanently.

After what seemed an eternity, The Fish Whisperer was back and I was ready…

Kam bɔbɔ, kam sidɔm 
Come here boy, come sit

This was it…. my 10 years on earth was about to change…. forever!

Mohamed pulled out a ball of tangled line and placed it between us as he started to softly whistle…

Ol na ya… ɛn ya, so…
Hold here… and here, like this…

Mohamed, na wetin wi de du so? Na layn nɔmɔ wi de pan lus..
Mohamed, what are we doing? We’re only untangling some line…

He smiled.

Bɔbɔ Perr, naw naw naw, yu na fishaman
Pierre my boy, right now at this very moment, you are a fisherman

After the lines had be re-spooled, Mohamed washed his hands and taught me how to rig THE BEST EVER fishing line…

But that wasn’t the bit that stuck.  That wasn’t the bit that stayed with me throughout my life. 

Unwinding.  

Be patient.  Life can sometimes become unravelled and left in a mess.  With time, nurturing and a correct pair of hands to guide, teasing a bit here, threading a bit there, much can be learned and much can be gained.

Mohamed paddled off quietly as I continued to fish…

Line is Cast

Acrylic on Canvas
24 x 30 x 3.5cm (unframed)

© Pierre Bamin 2019. All Rights

Read ‘The Rock’ narrative


£180

Available for purchase. Price excludes P&P
Please send me your queries

There’s a reason why so many people varnish…

Slide SOLD Unfortunately this piece is no longer available for purchase
If you wish to own an open edition print,
or would like to discuss a commissioned piece, please contact me with you details.
CLICK HERE
Categories
Blog Paintings

Circling, Waiting, Watching.

Never slacken!

A slack fishing line, especially in wind and choppy conditions, is more often than not the main cause for line tangles and disruption. Before preparing to cast a hand-line, it is very important you lay the coils down in an organised fashion. If the elements of high winds and choppy waters rage against you, wrap your line carefully, close to your body. When you come to cast, these loose but organised coils will leave you, smoothly.

Handline fishing in adverse conditions, needs complete attention. A fisherman must never leave his line unattended.
When deciding to fish by hand, the trickiest part of all is casting. For a good cast, weight and bait are crucial, but most importantly is the timing. A correct measure of weight, spun well and cast, will reach further, cutting through the wind, flying well above the noise and landing in choice spots barely visible to the eye.

Love what you do, honestly!

There are no fish finders, no drones, no artificial lures and no reels. GPS hotspots have not been bought. This is hand-line; wound on driftwood; each wind of the twine bound by secrets of the ages. This is as organic and as pure as it gets.

They say that smooth seas never make for skillful sailors, fishing, especially in rough water, is not about catching fish, it’s about catching yourself!

Circling, Waiting, Watching.

Acrylic on Canvas
508 x 406 x 38mm (unframed)
Canvas is triple primed 100% quality cotton all wrapped around kiln-dried A+ solid pine timber.

© Pierre Bamin 2019. All Rights

Read ‘The Rock’ narrative


£400

Available for purchase. Price excludes P&P
Please send me your queries

Slide AVAILABLE This painting is still available for purchase
If you wish to own an open edition print,
or would like to discuss a commissioned piece, please contact me with you details.
CLICK HERE
Categories
Blog Paintings

Pause

Pause

Acrylic on Canvas
508 x 406 x 38mm (unframed)
Canvas is triple primed 100% quality cotton all wrapped around kiln-dried A+ solid pine timber.

© Pierre Bamin 2019. All Rights

Read ‘The Rock’ narrative


£400

Please contact me with your print or license queries

Varnish makes water shine!

Slide SOLD Unfortunately this piece is no longer available for purchase
If you wish to own an open edition print,
or would like to discuss a commissioned piece, please contact me with you details.
CLICK HERE
Categories
Blog Paintings

Back to the Breaks

Back to the Breaks

Acrylic on Canvas
508 x 406 x 38mm (unframed)
Canvas is triple primed 100% quality cotton all wrapped around kiln-dried A+ solid pine timber.

© Pierre Bamin 2019. All Rights

Read ‘The Rock’ narrative


£400

Please contact me with your print or license queries

When you add varnish to water,
magical things happen!

Slide SOLD Unfortunately this piece is no longer available for purchase
If you wish to own an open edition print,
or would like to discuss a commissioned piece, please contact me with you details.
CLICK HERE
Categories
Blog Paintings

Drop a Line

Sometimes a quick call can make all the difference!!!

…drop a line.

Slide SOLD Unfortunately this piece is no longer available for purchase
If you wish to own an open edition print,
or would like to discuss a commissioned piece, please contact me with you details.
CLICK HERE