I have crammed these pieces together so they more or less make one single unit, one illustration. While working with plaster and clay I found myself thinking intently about television images of the bombing in Aleppo, Syria; the plight of those who stay, and the plight of those who travel. Also my personal feelings about the unleashing of unsavoury sentiments post-Brexit.
I am absolutely not going to engage in any political discussions here, but do want to try and use this textile art exploration to express some of the things I am trying to process. My artwork so far, in life, has been mostly about nature, horizontal landscapes, attractive to friends and family. However, I would like to use any developing skills in trying to express my opinions. So that is mostly what I have got out of Part 3; the first timid steps in trying to express thoughts about a situation.
I have drawn on paper, on sand, on fabric, on clay, with plaster, and with digital media; I have used textile techniques to sew fabric together, to embellish plaster casting, to create collages and I have remembered to relate the two to one another but could certainly do more. One successful example are the drawings, both new and old, which inspired and developed ideas for a moulded Sculptamold pot. The process is described in Post dated October 4th.
The drawing process sometimes resulted from the completed exercise, for example Here, where a small mould inspired a machine embroidery design.
I have completed the exercises given to us in the Unit, which involved moulding from a surface and also casting the internal space of a vessel. However, I’ve extended the use of the materials to use them as a means of expressing something further about joining strips of fabric to say something about destruction and re-building, about dust, about feet slapping relentlessly along dry ground . My thoughts were inspired by an exhibition visit described here Exhibition notes, ‘Art from Elsewhere’, Bristol. This resulted in using the materials to coat and sandwich strips of fabric which may, potentially, be moulded into shapes either before or after stitch.
Some things have surprised me. For example, casting the internal space of a vessel was indeed driving me potty with its wayward results. However once I added another element, textile, and allowed that to dictate form, the result was more interesting. I like the hessian coated piece here, it makes me think of cradling. Post dated October 9th.
Other items I have to admit, I made a sigh of relief when I found a “use” for them. For example these Claydium molds were remembered and brought into use once I started to think about my visit to the Art from Elsewhere Exhibition.
My favourite images from this Unit are below.
This is a cast of some baseball stitching, onto Sculptamold, alongside a drawing of baseball stitch, meandering across two A3 sketchbook pages. I like the contrast between flat and chunky, The feeling of a ‘portion’ which has no beginning or end, the tactile quality of the cast against the almost frustrating none-tactile quality of the drawing (this is where stitch comes in – you get a tactile quality from line – this is a revelation to me).
So here is the stitch, the tactile quality of line which I mentioned above. These threads look like part of a living thing to me. Maybe this particular photo doesn’t describe a pathway or journey, but it does imply movement between confined spaces (a bit like the daily walk Emily Jacir made Crossing Surda, 2002 .
Drawing on Marazion beach, near Penzance. I made a collection of sketches and notes which will be very useful for Part 5, if my tutor agrees. I imagine a piece of stitched, joined fabric, possibly with added print, about 10 feet long, hung on a wall and falling into folds and waves at the base, onto the floor.
I’ve tried going through the Criteria and depressed myself. My 43%, bottom of the class mark for my last course haunts me and it’s a struggle to keep going.
The most successful thing I take from Part 3 is a growing independence and bravery in the use of what we are learning.
Improvements to be made – I need to use and write up my Research. For example I made a fairly extensive visit to the Bath Museum of Fashion this Summer but have not used what I learned there. I also visited an exhibition of work by Imran Qureshi at Newlyn Art Gallery during the Summer. I think I should start a Bibliography, because I do browse books as well as the web, but don’t seem to mention much about them. I’ve also watched several good BBC Arts programmes during Part 3. I have an enormous library of inspirational photographs and could find some means of logging them alongside, or within, this blog. I’m still a little disorganized in that I keep finding small, undeveloped items that should have been logged, because they are all demonstrations of work done. I need to produce more samples, more drawings.