How it Began
In 2005 I was a closeted, obsessive, untutored artist. Six years earlier, I had mysteriously begun painting and drawing to the utter surprise of my family, and the bewildered consternation of some of my friends and colleagues (I kept it a secret from most people). When I spotted a call for artists for the 2005 Raw Arts Festival, to be held in Islington, I geared up all of my courage and applied, completely sure that I would be rejected, reviled, and laughed out of London.
Reader, I was accepted. I was on my way to Glory. Surely I was going to be acknowledged as a real, honest-to-goodness Outsider Artist! But I quaked in my boots. Would there be many women in the show? More to the point, would there be any older women in the show? (I was 65 at the time.)
To my joy there were other women in the show, from middle aged to (almost) my age. The talent! The warm appreciation and support! The openhearted enjoyment of each other's work! How we bonded, how we talked into the night. One evening, over a particularly memorable dinner in Chinatown, I idly commented: "We should have a show of our own, called 'WOW!!' for Wild Old Women. What a dramatic and exciting exhibition it would be." And four years later here we are, the original gang from 2005 along with other Wild Women gathered along the way. Wild, most certainly; middle aged to elderly – hell yes! - and undoubtedly women. How sweet life can be!