Whilst returning to work on body drawings I have also been following up on medicinal botanical herbs that I became interested in, by the discovery of what I thought was a voracious weed at the bottom of the garden! Described by the Guardian as one of those that have come from overseas in Public Enemy No 1 This continues to lead to further drawing and some print making, so far I have identified my plant as Petascites Fragrans or Winter Helitrope and have been sent to the site of Giant Petasites Hybridus (Butterbur) by a local botanist, the Giant is a native, so less problematic . I hope to return to do further drawings for print making on Saturday.
The last few weeks have been all about unpacking & settling into my new home in Frome Somerset and now with assistance making a studio in my new home.
Can I believe that? Yes an artist, me.
So now the carpet is removed in the attic room, thank goodness I asked for help, removing transporting a carpet down 2 floors and dragging it out of the pedestrian area to the garage.
Apart from some life drawing I’ve not been doing new work, but did experiment with a pastel sketch yesterday morning, should have thought more about paper but I wanted to work on red again.
Some discovery of artists Eleanor Adair, really evocative for me
and reading discovered Dolan and Tincknell ‘Ageing femininities Troubling representations’ O yes!
Much of my time devoted to the unpacking chore and making a new homehard work that is every now and again exciting. A back garden with a blank sheet, but a strawberry bed at the side.
university virtually finished for the year, one optional tutorial tomorrow.
the decision that the top floor is a studio in the making, which is what attracted me to this house and the potential of Frome for artist in the making;this has all happened later on for me.
This drawing of a differnt subject than usual bodies, came about on a lovely day spent with Irene at Timsbury on pastel workshop with Caroline Kibble. Lots of advice re paper which I shall find particularly useful. We all created very different images.
5 days chipping, working into stone the lines of my drawing, not quite 3D more an extension of 2d, complete but incomplete emerging from rock, very glad I used am image I had made of Mel model for Bathspa uni’s life drawing class. Quite a character and fits with this emerging image well making it authentic.
it has been so inspiring Hannah Sofear working with us, working also alongside Dan who is planning his life change from a business on Liverpool’s container port to stone carving via City and Guilds course.
On Friday I went into Tout quarry LeArningstone to write up my thoughts, how I could further use my drawings, possibility of projecting my drawings onto stone.
I could not have imagined that I would create something like my sculpted drawing, I have had such a confidence issue sometimes with my drawings. I need to keep on with drawings of the body fundamental to my work. But could particular lines I chipped away more be deeply fundamental too? Again someone has seen my work as different. This image I used when chipped way had element of the ancient about it.
This also relates back to a talk I heard by Lavinia Byrne about Palmyra in the 1st term, and a image that I created that really did not work at that time.
I have been so engaged with the process that I’ve often not had my notebook with me when Hannah has mentioned connections with contemporary artists but surfice it to say that I have looked at Chris Le Brun and Michael Kenny with his combination of the figurative and abstract. A beginning. I also need to consider Joseph Beys work and have the connection with Victoria Walters in Bath to start to do this.
Hannah Soefar the sculpter who worked with us, introduced ‘opening up stone to the light for the first time’, a concept especially within Tout quarry with all its ancientness, where I kept seeing so many different images that had been carved into the stone. This work had initially including Gormley and John Roberts stone carver, taken place 20 years ago when a numbers of contemporary sculptors inscribed images to fit with the ancient stones and boulders. I have the impression of profound interest and engagement with so many issues here; geological, social, ecological and political. Its very interesting to me as my sister has lived in nearby Weymouth for many years and as many I have only begun to get to know Portland recently, post 2012 Olympics.
I am considering the suggested possibility of a further week or placement need to think about that too, maybe, is this a one off experience or more? Need to reflect more.
I started out with 2 identical red boards and despite attempts to create a series have come up with 2 very different pieces of work. What I do not understand at all is how differently the crimson red behaved. Disappearing to start with on the body of the 1st painting and appearing more distinct on the clothing of the 2nd. Or that’s what it feels like.For the moment this will remain a series of 2. With the possibility of a 3rd at a later stage. O well that will have to do for the present.
At the same time as I have been finishing studio work, I have been continuing to work through my plans for summer term project. The mention of Henry Moore months ago when Clare Woods ran the large scale painting workshop resulted in me looking into Henry Moore’s drawings. Some like the underground second world war drawings, and his mining drawings seem to be drawings for themselves. Others are clearly related to his sculptures but those figures in all of the drawings, all the figures have similarity. But can I look at him without experiencing sculpture? No I don’t think so now.
So whist I was in Weymouth this weekend went over to Portland.After having Googled Portland and sculpture and found Stone Carving, went and had a chat. they suggested if I was really to get to grip with Moore I needed the experience of engaging with the landscape and light on a 5 day course rather than just a weekend and give a presentation about my work!
I went to this talk at the Royal Academy on Friday, so glad as it dealt with so much that is relevant to me and what I am looking about. Focused on a painting of La Vecchia seen at an exhibition of Renaissance art by Giogione. I find this picture of the painting from the Guardian engaging as a young woman looking and pondering on the image. The discussion by panel; Lynne Segal professor of gender studies, Borgia author Sarah Dunant, Aileen Ribeiro prof from the Courtald institute and Dr Hannah Zeilig expert on cultural representation of aging. Wow a real discussion on something that is so relevant to what I am trying to do. Sarah Dunant and Aileen put in context discussed how unusual La Vecchia was, in an age of witch trials, and how sympathetically displayed more a representation with a message than a person . Shown a variety of images of older women, not a great many to choose from. Today when there are more people over 60 than under 16? Age is decline, are age and beauty diametrically opposed? The reality that time does destroy the vestiges of beauty. Men in power appear ‘beautiful’ and strong at all ages. Old age itself is feminized. Erotic images of women are never portrayed sympathetically.
This felt the beginning of a discussion, at the encouragement of the person I was sitting next to I got involved in a discussion with Lynne Segal about this, lots of agreement there but encouraging to get involved in a dialogue about my reaction and also talked to Kube a black woman whose concern about the lack of inclusion of a black women resonated
I went on the Bathspa Gallery London gallery trip on tuesday and was with a small group led by Rachel Withers who lectures in both interpretation of art and who is an art critique. We covered 10 galleries or rather 9 in my case as i opted out of a later one! So I will concentrate on the highlight or those that raised issues. It also fascinating to compare the experience of last year using gallery trip to go to one exhibition Marlene Dumas Image as Burden where I just sat and looked!
Mark Wallinger’s Id paintings was something I wanted very much to look at and there was more time there. Dealing with the conscious unconscious and doubling one side of the image with another. at an arms reach was something I was conjuring with as at an early stage of painting large myself with extended brushes.
Scottie Wilson’s outsider art was obviously something that resonated with Rachel with personal knowledge. A man caught in a particular world cross hatching everywhere easily imaginable with a narrow boat. all sort of different influences boats fish water stylised.
Charlotte Joffe exhibition concerned with the complexity of relationships was a series of family portraits some similarity with others, perhaps intentionally. paintings that would mean a lot to the subjects. very different from other work we saw but in some ways disappointing Perhaps people known in the extended family and some taken form photographs in biographies Sylvia Plath and Ted Hughes for instance. There was a similarity in some and a distance in others not surprising in those taken from biographies.
The exhibition that stood out was Michael Joo’s series of paintings /prints of calorific works , calculation. What an exhibition that could hang together in every way. Situated in the creation on baking trays and the impression that results working with calorie counting. Food consumption, wealth and shortage. Result calculated within Buddhist aesthetics. What is the adequate nutrition? Results of research imprinted on the results Combining painting photography and printing. Aesthetically beautiful in the result. This exhibition felt the most satisfactory and beatify held together. images not possible to reproduce.
overall a taxing day, a bit of visual indigrestion, walked miles and blurred images and actually a lot of learning! A lot of artists to refer back to
Then yesterday several people had spoken to me about on the face of it a local exhibition by artist and printmaker Maisie Parker on life drawing one of my major preoccupation at least as a staring point.
Beautiful, comical in some cases, poinient the large angel, different interpretations bold, then covered, full bodied then a comical bum. different thoughtful and the 2 experiences together a lot of food to refer again to Michael Joo and in producing more work myself a resource
Fascinating time with other students and Clare Woods artists, the results behave meant great changes to my work but more anon as I work the results through