We repeated last week’s exercise on discussing our objects, but this time on stuff that we had made in relation to our project proposals. Really interesting mix of making and experimentation across the class. I was pleased with how the session went – I had worked hard on trying some new things out for my objects and seeking to develop away from my current style and materials – looking into new things. These were the objects I took in:
They were a series of shades designed to cover a tealight, starting from a textile version (such as my current practice), moving through some of the ghost candles I have been doing – using paper and stitched plywood; finally yesterday’s creation with polymer clay mosaic tiles. The polymer clay tiles represented the inside of the meditative mind – while looking at the candle often used in mindfulness techniques. The chaotic day to day mind gradually quietens as relaxation deepens. Until stillness.
Oh and one more….made from the leftover clay from the work on the tiles – and perhaps my favourite objects of the day.
The key things the others thought (without prompting) were exactly the sort of messages I had hoped they would pick up. They spotted the interplay of light and shadow, and even used the word projections (which has been my word of the day), noting that I had been trying to make different light effects with the different materials. Bridget commented that it was a good attempt at trying to take such a vast idea and give it physical form – which gives me hope that I am starting to align my thoughts in the right direction.
Things I would improve – be braver and more fearless. There are no rules to break so try whatever you want (which doesn’t burn down the studio or my house). Anything can be used as art – we had sponges, polystyrene, cups, wires and even leftover cucumber today. Focusing on one aspect of my proposal (such as the ‘meditative mind’ concept) gave me my favourite objects (the spiral balls).
The other key thing I have realised on thinking about today’s session is that one of the things I want to add as context to my work, is a harmonisation of the old: traditional craft techniques and the ancient search for human answers with the modern, technological age we are now living in. I value and appreciate the natural world immensely, and I care just as much as anyone about recycling, re-use and natural materials….but….I also recognise the world has changed, and I really do believe we can embrace this new world and embed it into our old world without losing anything, gaining richness along the way. Using the polymer clay for example got my thinking on this, using digital media and digital art techniques, 3D printing etc. These can add much to ancient techniques – sewing, pottery, woodwork and so on. Not sure how this might manifest in my work yet – apart from wanting to borrow the college video camera to film the rain – but I will keep an eye and see how this develops.
Long but useful day