Monday, 27 February 2012

Half Tone Screenprints - The Last Flight of the Space Shuttle

Continued experimentation with half tone prints ::
I am happy with my registration and choosing to slow down
during the process of production was a good thing.
This is an edition of 25 and the size is 01.

I used chalk to obtain some interesting breaks throught the surface of the ink
in the top one. Over all I am pleased however I have decided that the ink is too plastic
and the surface too glossy.

I will be using a different ink in my final image in this narrative.
I want the ink to sink into the paper and become a part of the surface.

After the last image in this series which I wil be working on this week, I will be changing my focus.
The subject matter will be changing in readiness for the up and coming show at
Camberwell in August and I am searching for a new fresh approach to my printing.

I will be thinking about :
Subject Matter
Printing technique

The continuity will lay within the fundamental thread which has run throughout my work so far:

'Things Left Behind'

Saturday, 25 February 2012

All That Is Left

 a family home is closed down and it sits in waiting for demolition
I had access to this property recently and this photo reminds me of a stage
the curtains are closed for the last time and the show is over


the layers of history - odd curtains and mismatched fixtures
add to the nostalgic mood

the white void on the right adds peace to the mood
of chaotic colours and patterns

light falling amongst the last remnants of the
family adds solemnity to the rooms

keys are scattered and left around the house
they are superfluous now

when a building is vacated, the last objects hold small hints -
they appear coded and contain no beginning or end

open and closed spaces seemingly invite you in and shut you out
- holding onto secrets

wallpapers in cupboards provide the timeline

the passageway echoes and sounds hollow

missing fittings are a reminder of the vacancy

a lone mirror seemingly floats within a floral sea
like a portal

shafts of light dance around like ghosts 

embossed wallpapers hold memories of former comforts

a sturdy staircase feels like the skeletal backbone of the
abandoned building

a chair waits expectantly

the empty box echoes the missing furniture mapped out by
the square of odd wallpaper

symbolic and solitary

Sunday, 12 February 2012

moving image + things left behind

Walking along Venice beach in Los Angeles on boxing day, I came across a balloon washing in and out with the motion of the waves. The repetitive action was mesmerising and the complementary colours made it a perfect  opportunity, one of those moments. I prefer the sound cut so the visual is more powerful. I couldn't help but wonder - whose party it had come from . . . . . . 

I was drawn to this rust coloured leaf, suspended by a spiders web. It twirled endlessly and the repetitive, energetic movement was so captivating for me. We often walk on by these opportunities - I think it is good to notice your thoughts when you see objects like this. Especially if they are accidental like this, its a gift.

Human Hair Remnant + David Hammons

these portraits are a selection of my hairdressing work 

Using hair as a material for sculpture is relevant  to my practice as my history working with hair goes a long way back. I used to be a hairdresser, cutting, sculpting and creating 3d shapes meticulously. I have been waiting for 'hair' to emerge and merge within my approach to the making of art. This has finally happened ! 

these balls of hair are from my hairbrush - I see this as a work in progress forever . . . . 

hair + pins

Recently I found the plaits my Mother in law wore as a child in a box, amongst a family house clearance. I think this is when my thoughts gravitated back to the idea of using hair.

 Also Alice Anderson's works in both The Riflemaker and Freud's Museum had a direct influence. Anderson's works were incredibly seductive materially -  tying up a whole building with red hair and allowing it to extrude seemingly from the walls and fireplaces within the buildings evoked thoughts and ideas which have stayed with me.

I recently went to the Hammer Museum, L.A. and discovered the 70's artist, David Hammons.  He worked with hair and this
is so similar to what I have been doing with my balls of rolled up hair from my brush. I bought the book called 'L.A. Object'
a brilliant resource related to this artist and the 70's black artists and the movement at this time.
Currently I am collecting hair from over 20 salons to enable me to construct a sculpture. It is an interesting exercise, asking people to keep something they normally throw away. Mostly the hairdressers have been reasonable and helpful. This is part of making conceptual art - you have to get 'game' and step outside the square at times to acquire the necessary materials. 

Setting Up a Workable Studio Space

I found it took a long time to sort out what is needed for a workable space for Printmaking. Not only does it need to be relatively dust free, it is important to have everything to hand and spaces have to flow. If this is not the case it becomes frustrating and inefficient. It took me a few times, moving things around and laying everything out to find what works for me. I have set up shelves in the middle of my working space to enable everything to be at arms length.

Basic list for print studio :

Dry  - cutting paper area

Hotplate - A food warmer

Plate wiping area/sheet glass

Shelves for inks,tools and sundries

Sink/Wet area for rinsing

Print storage and blotters

Plan chest for dry prints

Large table surfaces

Desk for writing, thinking, drawing

shelves for general storage

heater for drying plates

refreshments area

relaxing area - sofa

writing and setting out a plan numerous times helped me get it
together without actually moving everything initially

Studios are an investment. They are a special space for the artist to retreat to and be creative, think, relax and dream. I will never be without a space in which to do this. It doesn't matter how big or small the space is. It can just be a table at home and rent a studio space within other printmaking groups, for example, Inkspot in Brighton. It is simply what ever suits your needs at that particular point in time. Nothing beats the feeling when the door closes and you shut the world out for a day of ' work.'