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Studio Resident—Glennis Cane

This month we learn about our studio resident Glennis Cane as she takes over our Instagram feed and shows us some of the work she has been working on.

A bit about me, I’m Glennis Cane and I have a shared studio on the 1st floor with another creative at The Margate School. I found my studio space just before the pandemic started, having moved from Brighton to Margate, and was pleased to find studios that were reasonably priced and have been enjoying the atmosphere ever since.

I am frequently asked if I am an artist because I have a studio. I always feel slightly embarrassed because I don’t know the answer. If your view of an "artist" is that to be one you must have studied at a School of Art, have a large body of recognized work, be known in art circles, or make your living through art then I am not an artist.

If I was asked if I was creative, if I spend time on creative endeavors, if I enjoyed creating art, I could honestly say yes, I am creative.

My educational and professional background is largely unrelated to art, I studied at the University of Surrey as a mature student in 1989 and acquired a degree in Applied Psychology and Sociology.

I had two young children at the time, so I took part-time work teaching social skills in prisons. I then trained to be a Staff Nurse in psychiatry, I also had the dubious benefit of having bipolar disorder myself!

Sounds a gloomy subject but it’s not so bad. I did some drawing when I was hospitalised, I was so glad to be there, to feel safe from myself as that time I had gotten rather psychotic.

I taught English in Izmit after marrying my second husband who is Turkish, I like

d Turkey but definitely not the frequency of the earthquakes which were minor during the time I was there but bad enough to worry me.

In 2004 I came back to England kissing the tarmac at Gatwick. I went to the University of Manchester and got my MA in novel writing.

I gave up work in 2006 as my mental health took a nosedive and then got divorced for the second time so I moved to Brighton to be near one of my brothers, and it was here that I became interested in art. I joined an art group organised by the artist Jake Spicer who has the patience of a saint teaching to groups of people with mental health issues. After this, I went on to get City and Guild Grade 1 and 2 in Art & Design.

I enjoy painting on a variety of materials including fabric, wood, canvas, and ceramics, recently I have taken to painting and selling one-off tote bags.

I feel privileged that I now have the time, space, and a little bit of money to be able to create art.

I am always hugely pleased when I sell something even for a very small profit. Most people do not spend their money on works of art and a decreasing number buy books—not because they don’t want to, most just don’t have enough money. So when someone spends their money buying one of my bags or postcards it is enormously gratifying.