Artists under Lockdown / Stine Bidstrup
A glass artist based in Copenhagen.
The Design Edit (TDE): How are you keeping busy in self-isolation?
Stine Bidstrup (SB): I try to make sure that I get outside everyday (which is still allowed here in Denmark, where the sun has come out after months of endless rain and grey skies) and get to my studio as much as possible. In that sense, my work life has not changed much from what it was before March 11th, when the country shut down – artists often spend a considerable amount of time in ‘self-isolation’. I am trying to finish current projects, which there is ample time for now, but not knowing when the projects can start to be shown out in the world and appreciated by others, is a bit saddening. I am also writing new proposals for projects, exhibitions and residencies for activities next year – again something that is always happening in my ‘normal’ work life, but it seems a little more urgent now. So the positive consequence of this situation is the urge to try and seek out opportunities, and not holding back from doing something.
TDE: Everyone’s pace of life has slowed down considerably; what is the impact of this new rhythm on your work life and home life?
SB: I have become very, very aware of how much I miss seeing my friends and colleagues in person, and I miss visual and social stimulus in general. It is difficult having to constantly assess whether my social interactions might have consequences for others – members of my family mostly. As someone who does a good part of my work abroad, the prospect of not being able to travel for at least the next couple of months, if not longer, is having an impact on my work life. I hope it can turn out to be a positive one of rethinking things somehow.
TDE: Do you have a favourite self-isolation recipe to share with us – culinary or psychological?
SB: Go outside and get some air. I live in an apartment in Copenhagen and I do not have my own garden, so it is very necessary to get outside. I have held a ’walking outside Friday bar’ with a friend from my neighbourhood. I have walked so much, I started getting blisters on both heels! I am happy to live in a beautiful city surrounded by water that can be explored easily on foot. But the city municipality has put in restrictions about where to go for walks, and have even put in measures to make park walkways ‘one-way’.
TDE: What is saving your sanity under lockdown?
SB: I have set up a weekly Skype session on Monday nights with a good artist friend in the US, where we do online studio visits. It is very helpful to keep my focus on work. Since a lot of my friends and professional network exist all over the world, Skyping is not an unusual communication mode for me, and I kind of like that it is now the norm – at least for a time.