Sailing out of Grain is an intimate portrait of Hilary Lister, the first disabled woman to sail solo around the UK. This new artwork by renowned artist Juan delGado captures her in a distinctive, mesmerising way.

Drawing on poetic and evocative images, Sailing out of Grain is a non-linear narrative split over 3 screens, with a naturalistic soundscape.

Sailing out of Grain explores themes of dreams and reality, freedom and confinement, and challenges our perception of what constitutes the ‘perfect sports body’. It is the story of Hilary’s journey to regain her independence.

Juan delGado’s approach is an experiential one: “I try to live whatever I am filming, immersing myself as far as possible. If it is sailing, I learn how to sail.” Through this, the development of the project becomes an organic process.

It also means that Juan better understands where to place his camera. For him, this is all important: his camera is a static observer, picking up as much as possible, capturing images and scenes but without influencing or interfering with them.

Originally from Spain, Juan began his artistic life in photography before the transition into moving image in the late 1990s, bringing many of the ideas and sensibilities that he had developed with him. Sailing out of Grain has been a labour of love for him – and a challenge.

Hilary Lister became the first disabled woman to sail solo around Britain On August 2009. She is only able to move her head and sails using three straws to control the boat. Hilary sailed into the record books on 23rd August 2005 when she sailed solo across the English Channel. She gives motivational talks to groups from all walks of life both nationally and internationally.

Sailing out of Grain will also tour the UK as part of the BBC’s Big Screens project. http://www.bbc.co.uk/bigscreens/

Visit the blog: http://www.sailingoutofgrain.wordpress.com


Sailing out of Grain: The Allsop Gallery, 31 August – 15 September 2012