The long run of graduate summer shows begin….this was the smaller of the two CSM shows, but still interesting to visit. I gathered a few points of thought for our own show and some interesting artists whose work impressed me.
My main takeaway was on hanging methods – not to be dictated by tradition or the limitations of the frame. Even some of the more traditionally hung art work had canvases which were draped over the stretchers or nailed to the outside of the frame. The second thought was on notecards/business cards – where someone I liked had left one, I took one away and looked them up afterwards – so much easier than having to hope google can come up with something. Curious how many of the cards I took home didn’t have active websites or anything uploaded. Moral? Be Prepared! Be ready once the show comes around!
Stand-out work for me was that of Tess Williams, who was exploring painting. The first photo below was her main piece in the show, the rest are from her website.
I found some extracts from an interview she gave which described the process behind her work.
“At the moment my work exists within the boundaries of traditional / deconstructed painting, installation and large-scale collage; exploring where one discipline ends and the next begins.
I am first and foremost concerned with the sensual immediacy of paint and its interaction with the porous materials that I chose to apply it to. My work explores the unprimed materiality of these textiles and how they can be enhanced, altered or adapted by paint. I never prime my materials in order to leave as much amount of absorption as possible. Meaning that the material and the paint become one, rather than the paint just lying on top of a surface, as with many primed paintings. The materiality of the work as a whole is important to me, allowing its evocative power to resonate.
I am also engaging with how folds, creases and movement within the materials can act as a form of mark making, creating shadows, lines and shapes, whilst adding new tones to the colours of the paint. I also explore the way folds introduce both inside and outside, in front and behind, what this evokes, compared with the emphasis on surface alone of traditional painting.”
This spoke to me of the sort of feeling I want to capture in my own fabric drawings, not specifically about the use of paint – but the integration of materials, colour and process into one textural surface. I also like to use unprimed canvas to paint on, but never really thought deeply of why. I need to understand fully the material narrative my work offers as part of the overall message it is portraying.