TANIA OKO

On the 18th March 2020 Boris Johnson announced that school would close to prevent the further spread of coronavirus. Two days later on Friday 20th March, my children (aged 8, 10 and 11 years) attended school for the last time for the foreseeable future. I am  an artist and director of Oko:Art Studios and Gallery and I also run a campervan rental business. Both businesses halted almost over night as we were advised to stay at home with no non-essential or overnight trips permitted.

 

At the beginning of lock down, I naively though schools would be open again in the Summer term and so I did not worry too much about homeschooling. The weather was unseasonable warm and so we filled the days in the garden playing, building garden furniture with pallets, getting our daily permitted walks outside of the home and  playing lots of board games. It felt a bit like a holiday but tinged with sadness as we walked widely passed lots of people with 2 meters distance along country footpaths and local pavements!

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I brought paints, drawing materials and canvases home from my studio. I made some time for myself and started some ‘Zoom’ life drawing classes. I had not done any life drawing since art college and it was great being able to this from the comfort and safety of home. This led to the completion of the triptych ‘Isolation’ of my 3 children playing alone, with lots of space, on apparatus that they were no longer allowed to use in the local parks.