Perfect Space

A wide bench, holding a laptop and an anglepoise lamp. A concrete floor decorated, perhaps, with a hard-wearing woollen rug. Pot plants to provide oxygen and a heater to see you through the winter months. Music, of course, coming from an old record player, with vinyl housed on metal shelves. Corrugated roof tiles, some of the clear to let in the sunlight and the speckled pattern of recent rain. A canvas in progress, hanging from one wall, with another bench for paints, brushes, thinner, palettes. Paintings stacked up on the floor. A projector and a white wall for film screenings. Filing cabinets and bookshelves. I could see out my days in such a space.

Mostly, I picture the old greenhouse in the cottage where I grew up, in which my father grew tomato plants, and based his workshop. This building felt like a world of its own, the smells of tomato vines mixing with wood glue, creosote, methylated spirits, sawdust. At night, I would look out over the garden at the lights swollen under the glass panes, as my father worked at carpentry, or welded metal, and I think about the time I might inherit such a space, and the things I would make.

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