Rhonda Fenwick: Archive

Body, Space, Image,
Exploring the Spaces In Between

This body of work Liminal Spaces is an exploration of those in between times and spaces where transformation takes place. The work is created at a time of change in my own life. Spilling into all areas, disrupting the status quo, creating a ripple effect. Community, spirituality, vocation, relationships, physicality, friendships and emotions do not exist mutually exclusive from one another — they intersect and intertwine. Crossing these thresholds of waiting and not knowing our 'next' are everywhere in life and they are inevitable.

The word liminal comes from the Latin word limen, meaning threshold — any point or place of entering or beginning. A liminal space is the time between the 'what was' and the 'next'. It is a place of transition, waiting, and not knowing.

Art for Peace in Syria:
Reflections and Visions

This work wa in response to the current situation in Syria working in collaboration with MASS (Medical Aid and Support for Syria). An exhibition of this work was held in St Peter's Church, Burnham, 12 — 15 May 2017 to raise funds to help set up a medical centre.

My starting point for this body of work is inspired by the short film "The Flower Seller of Aleppo", which can be viewed on YouTube here.

Beginning with some words spoken by Abu Ward, the father of the flowers: 'The Essence of the World is a Flower', and researching the symbolism of flowers in Syria, Jasmine, Orchids and Roses being the most popular, especially Jasmine, regarded as the national flower of Syria.

For most of the last five years there has been a small oasis of colour and life amidst the destruction and grief of rebel-held Aleppo. It's the garden centre, which has supplied plants, blooms and foliage to people in that part of the city throughout the war.

Jasmine, The Essence of the World is a Flower I

Orchid, The Essence of the World is a Flower II

Rose, The Essence of the World is a Flower III

Lily, The Essence of the World is a Flower V

Visions of hope for the future.

As seen in/as featured in The World of Interiors magazine.

Art for Peace in Syria:
Reflections and Visions

Paint boxes containing items relating to refugees fleeing conflict in Syria and the struggle artists are having to be creative amidst all of the destruction going on around them. These works were created as part of the Arts for Peace in Syria:Reflections and Visions project.

In the Time of Trees

This work is concerned with trees from different places around the world such as England, Thailand, Morocco, California, Israel, Canada, Iran, their spiritual and fantastical presence.

Sense of Place, Persia

This is a collaborative project between myself and Shidrokh Mazeheri who lives between Newcastle upon Tyne and Tehran Persia. We are in touch through email and Viber. Through discussion and travel we collaborate to create work that is concerned with encounters of every day life in Persia today. As individuals or part of the crowd. Exploring identity as expressed through the streets of the city and in the city. The project asks the question about individuality and becoming part of the fabric and mosaic of the city.

Catching the Light

In the beginning the world was covered in darkness and then light came. It is essential to our understanding of reality and at the same time the mystery that keeps us digging deeper.

In March 1905, Einstein created the quantum theory of light, the idea that light exists in tiny packets, or particles, which he called photons. Alongside Max Planck's work on quanta of heat Einstein proposed one of the most shocking ideas in twentieth century physics: we live in a quantum universe, one built out of tiny, discrete chunks of energy and matter.

This new body of work is an exploration of how light falls, through observing and recording, to combine something that is indescribable, fleeting, time sensitive and experiential and place it among a flood of information that is indiscriminate.

Earth as we know it came into being through its four great components: land, water, air, and life, all interacting in the light and energy of the sun. Although there was a sequence in the formation of the land sphere, the atmosphere, the water sphere, and the life sphere, these have so interacted with one another in the shaping of the Earth that we must somehow think of these as all present to one another and interacting from the beginning.

Thomas Berry

Between Two Worlds

Exploring socio-political landscapes through images and text

This body of work is concerned with journeys I have made to Iran, Israel and Dubai. Taking in everything I saw with my eyes and felt in my heart as I passed through some of the great towns and cities in the Islamic and Jewish worlds. Allowing my senses to flow into the images, enabling the viewer to travel, encounter and to experience how a contemporary artist from the West encounters these places.

The latest images from Iran are sent to me via email from my Iranian colleague. This is a collaboration between myself and my contact who at this stage wishes to remain anonymous. In the last two years I have visited Israel and Dubai where I photographed cities, landscapes and people in Jerusalem, Judea, Ramallah and Dubai. Upon returning to the UK I re-worked the images with paint marks and text in photoshop, merging them together to create a new narrative. Sharing our experiences of some of the world's ancient places.

Persian Project 2020 in Lockdown — Women's Work

English Translations of selected Poems and Poetry of the great Iranian Poet Forugh Farrokhzad

Forugh, one of the most famous Persian Women poets died in a car crash February 13, 1967 at the young age of 32. Poems such as “Reborn”, “The Wind Will Take Us”, “Sin” and “Let us believe in the dawn of the cold season” left an unmistakeably unique and indelible mark on Middle Eastern literature.


My entire soul is a murky verse, reiterating you within itself
Carrying you to the dawn of eternal burstings and blossomings
In this verse, I sighed you, AH!
In this verse, I grafted you to trees, water and fire
Perhaps life is a long street along which a woman
With a basket passes every day, perhaps life
Is a rope with which a man hangs himself from a branch
Perhaps life is a child returning home from school
Perhaps life is the lighting of a cigarette
Between the narcotic repose of two love-makings
Or the puzzled passage of a passerby
Tipping his hat saying good morning to another passerby with a vacant smile
Perhaps life is that blocked moment
When my look destroys itself in the pupils of your eyes
And in this there is a sense
Which I will mingle with the perception of the moon
And the reception of darkness
In a room the size of one solitude
My heart the size of one love
Looks at the simple pretexts of its own happiness,
At the pretty withering of flowers in the flower pots
At the sapling you planted in our flowerbed
At the songs of the canaries
Who sing the size of one window.
Ah this is my lot
My lot Is a sky, which the dropping of a curtain seizes from me
My lot is going down an abandoned stairway
And joining with something in decay and nostalgia
My lot is a cheerless walk in the garden of memories
And dying in the sorrow of a voice that tells me:
“I love your hands”
I will plant my hands in the flowerbed
I will sprout, I know, I know, I know
And the sparrows will lay eggs
In the hollows of my inky fingers
I will hang a pair of earrings of red twin cherries
Round my ears I will put dahlia petals on my nails
There is an alley where the boys who were once in love with me,
With those dishevelled hairs, thin necks and gaunt legs
Still think of the innocent smiles of a little girl
Who was one night blown away by the wind
There is an alley which my heart
Has stolen from places of my childhood
The journey of a volume along the line of time
And impregnating the barren line of time with a volume
A volume conscious of an image
Returning from the feast of a mirror
This is the way someone dies
And someone remains no fisherman will catch pearls
From a little stream flowing into a ditch
I Know a sad little mermaid dwelling in the ocean Softly, gently blowing Her heart into a wooden flute
A sad little mermaid
Who dies with a kiss at night
In my small night, ah
the wind has a date with the leaves of the trees
in my small night there is agony of destruction
listen do you hear the darkness blowing?
I look upon this bliss as a stranger
I am addicted to my despair.
listen do you hear the darkness blowing?
something is passing in the night
the moon is restless and red
and over this rooftop
where crumbling is a constant fear
clouds, like a procession of mourners
seem to be waiting for the moment of rain.
a moment
and then nothing
night shudders beyond this window
and the earth winds to a halt
beyond this window
something unknown is watching you and me.
O green from head to foot
place your hands like a burning memory
in my loving hands
give your lips to the caresses
of my loving lips
like the warm perception of being
the wind will take us
the wind will take us.


One window is sufficient
One window for beholding
One window for hearing
One window
resembling a well’s ring
reaching the earth at the finiteness of its heart
and opening towards the expanse of this repetitive blue kindness
one window filing the small hands of loneliness
with nocturnal benevolence
of the fragrance of wondrous stars
and thereof,
one can summon the sun
to the alienation of geraniums.
One window will suffice me.
I come from the homeland of dolls
from beneath the shades of paper-trees
in the garden of a picture book
from the dry seasons of impotent experiences in friendship and love
in the soil-covered alleys of innocence
from the years of growing pale alphabet letters
behind the desks of the tuberculous school
from the minute that children could write “stone”
on the blackboard
and the frenzied starlings would fly away
from the ancient tree.
I come from the midst of carnivorous plant roots
and my brain is still overflowed
by a butterfly’s terrifying shriek
crucified with pins
onto a notebook.
When my trust was suspended from the fragile thread of justice
and in the whole city
they were chopping up my heart’s lanterns
when they would blindfold me
with the dark handkerchief of Law
and from my anxious temples of desire
fountains of blood would squirt out
when my life had become nothing
but the tic-tac of a clock,
I discovered
I must love, insanely.
One window will suffice me
one window to the moment of awareness
observance and silence.
Now, the walnut sapling
has grown so tall that it can interpret the wall
by its youthful leaves.
Ask the mirror
the redeemer’s name.
Isn’t the shivering earth beneath your feet lonelier than you?
the prophets brought the mission of destruction to our century
aren’t these consecutive explosions
and poisonous clouds
the reverberation of the sacred verses?
You, comrade, brother, confidant,
when your reach the moon
write the history of flower massacres.
Dreams always plunge down from their naive height
and die.
I smell the four-petal clover
which has grown on the tomb of archaic meanings.
Wasn’t the woman
buried in the shroud of anticipation and innocence,
my youth?
the stairs of curiosity
to greet the good God who strolls on the rooftop?
I feel that “time” has passed
I feel that “moment” is my share of history’s pages
I feel that “desk” is a feigned distance
between my tresses
and the hands of this sad stranger.
Talk to me
What else would the one offering the kindness of a live flesh want from
but the understanding of the sensation of existence.
Talk to me
I am in the window’s refuge
I have a relationship with the Sun.

Tajrish Bazaar Tehran in January 2021

Art in Lockdown

The function of the artist in a disturbed society is to give awareness of the universe, to ask the right questions, and to elevate the mind. — Marina Abramovic

Responding to the idea of lockdown during the Covid-19 crisis through art.

Thinking of lockdown as a time of being on retreat. Reflecting upon the situation in an attempt to be positive and constructive amid all the doom and gloom. For most people their lives are ruled and governed by feelings of being pressured into wanting more, doing more, having more, travelling more and making more money. The relentless need created by a machine telling us how to live our lives. Perhaps this time is a good opportunity for the chains to be broken.

Looking at the world in a different way and recognising the beauty that surrounds us. Daily walks in the surrounding countryside, noticing the natural sounds and sights can provoke positive psychological states, with the potential to improve people's wellbeing and aid stress recovery. The natural world has been the inspiration for some of my work during the Pandemic.

The images are documents of time spent in lockdown.

Bird Song 1

Bird Song 2

Bird Song 3

Bird Song 4

Bird Song 5

Bird Song 6

Bird Song 7

Bird Song 8

Field Work — Accessing the field where all things are possible!

During the pandemic crisis and lockdown we’ve had more time on our hands to be creative and draw inspiration from the natural world. It offers us the opportunity to engage in quiet contemplation. Walking in fields of infinite possibilities we are reassured these natural scenes can remind us how the cycle of life continues. The sun still rises, flowers grow, birds sing and nature carries on regardless.

“Out beyond ideas of wrongdoing and right doing, there is a field. I’ll meet you there. When the soul lies down in that grass, the world is too full to talk about. Ideas, language, even the phrase “each other” doesn’t make any sense. The breeze at dawn has secrets to tell you. Don’t go back to sleep. You must ask for what you really want. Don’t go back to sleep. People are going back and forth across the doorsill where the two worlds touch. The door is round and open. Don’t go back to sleep.” — Rumi

Consciousness is infinite and once you learn to access the energetic field where all things come from, you’ll be able to create a whole new reality for yourself. It’s the source of all power and it’s all-knowing and it’s always present and we can tap into it at any time. Everything you ever feel the need to know, you can get the answers to if you ask and then get still. In this creative energetic field all things truly are possible and available. Creativity, inspiration, insights, .. it’s all coming from here. Life is created from consciousness and the (for most people) unseen invisible vibrational energy force that is all around us and in us. It creates through frequency and the more in tune we are with it, the more it keeps sending us great ideas and insights that we can use in our lives to create even more magic in both our own lives and in the life of others. It’s the energy behind every great piece of music, every invention and every great work throughout the whole history of mankind. When we are in alignment with it, we’re in the flow and we feel good and happy about life and we feel ‘protected’ and guided by a higher power.

The path we’re on is made clear before us as we take one step at a time and it’s not unusual at all to experience miracles where things we have struggled with are taken care of miraculously and where issues resolve themselves magically. We’re not meant to toil, suffer and struggle through life. Things and life can be so much more enjoyable and easy if we just use our minds a bit more, in the right ways!

Waldridge Fell is an extensive area of lowland heath (moorland less than 300m above sea level), and contains heather, bilberry and moorland grasses. These look stunning in late summer and autumn when the purple heather is in flower. The Fell is a Site of Special Interest (SSSI) and one of the few remaining areas of Lowland Heath in the North East. As you walk around the Fell you may catch sight of weasels, voles, butterflies and lizards.


Mixed media collages are collaborative pieces created by Natalia Ansari, with Rhonda. Comments on the Covid -19 crisis and lockdown. How I spent time, thinking about various issues and the human condition:-

Take a Walk on the Wild Side — Walking in the Woods

Shinrin-yoku goes beyond just walking in the woods, it combines mindfulness and meditation. One should walk slowly through the forest, opening the senses and noticing each small detail. ... Engaging all the senses to experience the surrounding nature.

The good news is that we can always turn to nature to boost our mental health as well as mental wealth. Effects of being in nature begin to show in as short as 20 minutes, but the longer time you can spend the better it is for you.

Wild Soul

Life is short, don’t spend it in a box,
add a little wildness to your soul,
to catch your dreams, a floating cloud,
to lose your worries, a silent lake,
to find your calm, a friendly forest,
staring at a box, don’t stay stuck,
add a little wildness to your soul,
to still your mind a singing stream,
to fill you heart a little flower,
to tune your soul, a wandering trail,
to nature we return, bound in a box,
before you go,
add a little wildness to your soul.

Everyday life in Moscow

A collaboration with my Russian friend Maria.

The general idea behind the series is to show some immediately recognizable Moscow sights in miniature (or in an unexpected place/form), so for example the photo of the large church which is across the road from my house can be a reference to our Christ the Saviour Cathedral. I have yet to find more connections like this. The one with a succession of traffic signs could perhaps be associated with being in/out of lockdown - a 'stop-go-stop' metaphor for our progress through the pandemic?

During my walks around Moscow looking at various sights and architectural details: one of the city Central Heating and Power plants, colourful renovated residential buildings in my area, detail of the historical building of the Central Telegraph, a very common old flag holder and two details from the splendid decor of our metro stations - a mural with a signature of the Russian writer who is probably most well-known in the West and a Soviet stained glass composition.

Old Moscow buildings and their decoration. The red buildings belong to one of the oldest and best public baths that are still functioning. There are our state and city (with St George) flags on one of the walls.


Alan, Alison and Erin take an Autumn Walk in Brancepeth, Durham.

Walks in Cliveden

Photos from Pam Worth and Jill Newby, residents in Burnham Buckinghamshire. Pam is a radio presenter for Gulf Radio Services and Jill is a teacher.

During the pandemic we’ve reserved our places to walk around the Cliveden estate. Taking in the landscape, architecture, sights and sounds of the historic house and gardens. It is a very interesting place with a rich history full of intrigue and delight. We revel in the surroundings, at the same time our spirits are replenished as we walk through the gardens and woods. These walks have helped to take our minds off the current Covid 19 crisis, give us a sense of wonder and appreciation of being able to enjoy such beauty.

Trees at Littleworth Common, Burnham

The trees at Littleworth Common Burnham, which is about three miles from my home. I have photographed trees around here at different times of the year, and the pond, which is a dew pond, is usually completely dry, or just a little muddy at the lowest point. I was quite surprised to see how full it had got, after some heavy rain over Christmas, there must have been water coming in from the surrounding land.

I have been going there periodically during lock-down for exercise. On this occasion I had not taken a camera with me, not expecting to take any photographs, but when I got to the pond and saw the reflections I realised my mistake! Fortunately my phone has a reasonably good camera so I was able to use that. The surface of the pond was quite still apart from some ripples close to me that did not spoil the reflections and I think that the overcast sky forms a good background for the bare trees.

B. Marsden

From Rhodesia to Kew

I walk every day, usually along the towpath and sometimes in Kew Gardens which are a ten-minute walk from where I now live.

I have found Lockdown ok. I’m used to solitude and never get lonely although I think I forget how to talk! Thank goodness for the internet and tv. I can’t watch idly though. I've been knitting busily all year. I also love reading. Have made lots of soup and casseroles for the freezer so the time passes happily and I notice that sunset is getting later each day so spring is not to far away!

I didn’t really have a career, my education was cut short - just first year 6th form - as my parents emigrated to Rhodesia when I was 16 so that disrupted it. I was a self-taught secretary, finishing as PA to the Chairman of the Wellcome Trust. The Trust gives millions of pounds each year to medical research and we certainly wouldn’t have the COVID vaccine without their support. Before I was married I worked as an air hostess with Air Rhodesia which was great fun and pioneering stuff when compared with today’s airlines.

Fern Graham

The Lake District

Winter walks in the Lake District during lockdown by Kim Smith.