Many painters paint over their old canvases; it’s a pragmatic way to recycle old work that no longer excites and motivates the artist. But for me, there’s the promise of something else. When layering new work over old, the sum of the parts can be greater than the whole. In this series, I’ve turned to old canvases that no longer interest me and I’ve used them as ghostly understructures for new works. The depth that’s hinted at by the underpainting creates a synergy between the old and new – lending some structure to the free, which excites me as an artist. Working on a recycled canvas, liberate me to experiment with palette knives, rollers, collage, feather dusters, combs, old socks and the insertion of the occasional button from my mother’s button box. An old painting can contribute to the architecture and texture of a new work, resulting in greater complexity and variety. The theme of these diverse paintings is therefore the opposition between the underlying geometry and the overpainting. This is more than indulgence in happy accident; it’s a dialogue between history and presence, and between form and freedom.