ITEM: A visit to the real House of Golden Dreams – studio of Jackie Morris, Carnegie and Greenaway nominated author illustrator.
DETAIL: People often ask me where the House of Golden Dreams is, and can they come and visit. The truth is only exists as an online gallery. There is no real physical place. But there is my studio.So many artists these days have a policy of ‘open studio’ that people expect to be able to visit a studio. Maybe because mine is in my home I have never done this. Maybe it’s because when I am at home I behave a little like a hermit, happy to hide away and catch ideas and paint and play and dream.
This time last week I couldn’t work. My daughter had flown to Hanoi a few on the Thursday. I painted, listening to the news, terrible weather in the Philippines and the storm moving towards Vietnam. I tried not to worry, but couldn’t settle to anything. The storm passed over Hannah. She was safe, happy, exploring a beautiful land. Meanwhile other mothers, other daughters were not so lucky.
I can’t imagine what it is like to lose everything, to struggle to find fresh water for your child, to be a child alone in the world. I tried to think what I could do to help, here in my small part of the world, something that would give money to these people whose lives had shattered and a small thank you for the blessing of my own child, safe.
So I would like to offer the chance to visit my studio, my home. To whoever wins this piece of the auction I would welcome you in for a small tour of the space in which I work, tea or coffee, a chat, a chance to riffle through sketchbooks, maybe read a little from stories I am working on. You would also get to meet Elmo the ginger cat and the naughty Lady S of leopard like beauty ( and Max, if you were really lucky). There are many pieces of original art hanging around, not all by me, and curious objects and strange things. If the weather is good we could take a walk, with Rosie who features in The Cat and the Fiddle, to visit Maes y Mynydd where the Seal Children is set and if you wished i could read the book amongst the ruined walls of the old village. If it’s raining maybe we could go to Solva Woollen Mill for tea and cake. A morning or an afternoon, your choice, and you could bring a friend.
( My studio is upstairs. If you are allergic to cats best not bid. It’s also not suitable for Under 12s. I live near St Davids in Pembrokeshire. You can buy this as a present for someone if you wish and i will send them a hand drawn card inviting them to come and visit.)
BIO: Jackie Morris is the author and illustrator of many books that masquerade as children’s books, because they contain pictures. She lives in a small house by the sea that is held together with the webs of spiders because she is more interested in painting and writing than in housework, though she does like to make bread. She shares the house with numerous dogs and cats and children that come and go ( usually her own).