Wednesday, 30 May 2012

My new heart update

The many layers of latex are finally dry. As you can see the colour has darkened as I mentioned before. By no means is this heart finished, this is just the base. The exterior will be covered in a web of tiny veins and the inside shall have two pumps inserted so that the heart will pulsate, there is still an awful lot of detail needed but I shall keep you posted on my progress.

(DV8 'scene from The cost of living)

I studied the Dv8 physical theatre group many years ago during my performance art A level, and must say they are certainly one of the things that influenced me and have stuck with me all these years. I find their use of every day 'mundane' movements put into a dance routine very poetic and romantic in a way. I've always found physical theatre interesting and extremely emotive but DV8 were the first people , and i think perhaps the only people I have ever seen use performance in such a way, I've never seen any other group or individual use emotion and movement to physically portray feelings of frustration, love hate and indifference. The use of every day movement I feel is ingenious, it is simple in theory but when you see it put together I feel it is very powerful.

The piece above is one of my personal favourites, to me , it expresses beautifully the pent up anger and sheer frustration of ones struggle with mundanity in such a visually stunning way. Perhaps others may not see this as 'art' put I would class it as performance art, weather it is or not , I still love it.

(Pretty Liar)

I don't know who did this, but I do know I love it. The more work I find like this and the more work I produce myself I find that one of the general themes within both are a sort of realisation of the fact that the world and a lot of the people in it are horrible and that it is a very dark place indeed, but through creating things such as this, it's (to me at least) quite cathartic, If I and others can make something beautiful out of something horrible, and put beauty into an otherwise rotten place, then maybe there is hope. Or perhaps it is just tongue in cheek irony. I haven't worked out which one yet.

Saturday, 26 May 2012

God save the queen!

I just had to make this broach, i could say it was for the jubilee, but its just because I love cross stitch and I love broaches !

Vous avez casse mon coeur, je vais vous faire une autre

You broke my heart, I will make another
(Vous avez casse mon coeur, je vais vous faire une autre)

This is the begining of an idea I have had in mind for a long time. I suppose the heart has always been at the very 'heart' of all of my work (no pun intended) wether the heart actually appears in my work or is merely making its prescence felt throughout the theme, it is always there.

Many times in my life i have felt broken and chosen to express this through my 'HE' art. Sometimes I've felt like i have physically pulled out my heart and fed it to the people I've cared for on a silver platter, so I thought, why not actually do that?

The heart isn't finished yet, this is just a sneak peak of the process, latex is a lovely thing to work with but very time consuming when you are undertaking something this big as you have to apply each layer and then dry and repeat the process. The colour will be much darker than it is on the photos as it does dry quite dark, This I have found is an art in itself, as you have to be careful not to mix your colours too dark as when the latex mix dries it will darken by at least five shades darker.

I don't want to say too much more about this at the moment as I plan to use this for a piece of performance art, and I don't want to spoil it.
I just thought  it would be nice to share the prosthetics process with you.

Also I assure you that the veins wont look like this when it's finished, they will be dark and realistic, I promise

Sunday, 13 May 2012

(the tooth worm)

I found these when I was researching my 'Bad tooth faerie) I'm unsure of the artist but they date back to the 1700's
Originally I just loved the aesthetic of a tiny world been housed inside a tooth (they aren't real teeth i should point out) But then I found out that they were apparently created to fit in with a creation myth that states the reason we get tooth ache is due to the tooth worm that lives inside our teeth, it was basically a battle of hell (represented by the tooth worm) and heaven as the good Samaritans fighting the tooth worm. I'm always intrigued by things that have meaning behind them and this appealed to me due to its macabre twisted faerie tale like approach.

Thursday, 10 May 2012

Why do you hate her?,,,,, I just do thats why!

As well as drawing on the heartache of failed friendships and relationships I wanted to , for a t least one page focus on the envy and cruelty of my own sex, or a least certain sects of them. Admittedly it is rather tongue in cheek. Finding an image from the fortian times of a 'ghost' or dark figure completely covered Olivia and I thought it amusing to write down insulting worlds that may be thrown at other women, usually by our own sex I'm afraid to say.(we didn't use profanities as although people would use them , we didnt' want to lower ourselves to that and felt it more amusing to use a more educated approach) To finish this off we found some text from another 'trash' magazine stating that this figure left nothing to the imagination in what she wore. It was done to poke fun at this' type' of character, the type of girls who just basically don't like other women, possibly due to jealousy or insecurity , I don't know, but the point of this page was to draw on that and poke fun at how silly we feel it is to behave in such a manner, this is why the 'revealing woman' is the exact opposite, because we felt that that 'type' of person would always have something to say, even if there really  was nothing to be said.

The right hand side of the page was another picture taken from an article about female voters. I felt that the lady in the picture looked rather sad so again i changed the concept and thought, she looks as though she is getting rid of an old love letter, so wrote:

"When clearing out your closet it is both environmentally friendly and theraputic to recycle all your old love letters"   
I found it fit very well with the overall theme of our magazine.

Not worth the fight

By taking an article originally featuring the history of women in politics and  finding text from 'trash' magazines I came up with the concept that women's roles in love could be liked to politics, only politics of the heart. This piece for the magazine is one that I am extremely proud of. I'm very happy in the way in which I am making more and more connections within culture and history and manipulating those connections to fit with a theme i am interested in, I think as an artist this is an important aspect of your career, as I feel it is important to have your own individual persona and style, through the connections i tend to make I feel this is further defining me as the individual I am.

Bitter sweet anti cross stitch

This is the finished Anti cross stitch I created for our magazine. I named this anti cross stitch as although it appears to be a conventional stitch, presented in a traditional aesthetically pleasing manner, inside the envelope lies something completely different. Instead of needles, pattern and thread, you are given a list of 'instructions'/ feelings that went into the making of the stitch, more of a sentiment behind the stitch.
   I'm pleased with the look of it, but most of all I am thrilled with the concept behind the image. if i say so myself I think its a very interesting and original idea, I've never seen anything like this before, and I'm proud of that. For me art is about the feelings that have gone into the work, the history and reason as well as the actual visual aspect, so for me this seemed like an obvious way of connecting the two, and I am very pleased with it.

(carolee schneemann interior script)

I first saw this piece when visiting the Tate in Liverpool a couple of years ago. Before I even  knew what the images were about the aesthetics of this piece instantly drew me in. It reminded me of 'sheela Na gig' ( a pre christian fertility goddess,  representing mother earth and female power) This is why I was originally drawn to it, I then found when reading about the artists intent with this piece that it wasn't all too far from the meaning and origins of Sheela Na gig. It was intended to represent, the inner scroll of knowledge, female power and perhaps that is on the level of the pre christian goddess, leading me to believe this may have been her inspiration , or at least one of them.
It is dramatic and again hard hitting, making you stand up an pay attention, anything with love and passion within it will always hold a place in my heart.

(Elizabeth A Sackler, 'Blood script')

I recently discovered Sackler whilst looking for feminist performance artists.  Although I liked her other pieces, this one I felt really stood out from the rest. I have always had a lot of time for people who are passionate about what they believe in, and Sackler is definatly one of these people.

In her piece 'Blood Script' she had a tattoo artist write both demeaning words whitch were thrown at Homosexuals on a daily basis along with the names of 438 homosexuals who had been killed in hate crimes. The tattooist didn't use ink so that when the needle went it only blood showed through.
I find this piece hard hitting and heartfelt, I feel Suckler is definatly one  of the people who understands that when you feel so strongly about something sometimes the only way you can make people see where you are coming from is to do something dramatic, unusual and very extreme. Sackler has definitely gained another fan.

Tuesday, 8 May 2012

Eveything's alright

 This is the final piece in my drawing book (before submission. As I've enjoyed doing it so much that I'm going to carry it on once i get it back)
This piece has a different kind of feel to it, I wanted to end this submission with something uplifting and hopeful. I thought that all my other pieces  have been quite dark and sorrowful, because life works out that way quite often, and although i won't stop making melancholy art, I felt that this drawing book has been a lot like a visual diary, it has helped me over the past few months and that is something I am very grateful for, so I felt that in the end, I'd like a happily ever after for once, even if there are none in reality. I felt it would be nice if , through all my sorrow and love that i have poured into my work that there was a happy ending , a reward and success, because I know that as long as i keep going and working hard, there just has to be an 'over the rainbow'

Over all i am extremely proud of my work throughout the drawing book, I'm fond of all my characters and their development and also enjoy just looking back through my work and been able to see how my line quality has improved along side the development of settings. I know that my work is still not perfect but I can see it is becoming more and more detailed, so know that if i carry on I may find the kind of perfection i seek.

Sunday, 6 May 2012

(Tim Walker)

The more I see of Walkers work the more I am verging on a new obsession. To me his work can only be described as a macabre, beautiful faerie tale, and find inspiration within it for my own work.

(Tim walker Italian Vogue)

I was recently shown these pictures by one of my friends who stumbled across them accidentally whilst looking for early Courtney Love pictures. I must say i am so glad she did. When i look at them I feel he has created a sickly sweet world, the use of colour is reminiscent of a typically 'girly' childhood, but the dolls faces seem macabre and leave you feeling ill at ease ( in the best possible way of course) I'm not sure if the artist intended this but when i look at these images I have a sense of stereo types, perhaps this wasn't intentional, but I feel when you look at the model she doesn't look all that happy, perhaps it is a comment on the typical 'You must be 'girlie', play with dolls and be pretty' type of stereo type, almost doll like.( not that i personally feel there is anything wrong with that) Maybe that's just my interpretation of it, but even if that isn't the case i still love these images.

Saturday, 5 May 2012

Love rats

This was a last minute idea i had for my drawing book. I love the sentiment behind it but must admit my heart wasn't fully in this one. I think perhaps because I'm not too comfortable drawing 'ugly' things, but i suppose lie rs are never pretty creatures so it had to be done. I still like it but i don't think the line quality and background are quite as good as my previous work. In hind sight I think i could have worked on the background a little more. Considering the meaning behind this image I wish i had have put more into the background such as having discarded underwear, bits of jewellery , perhaps heeled shoes etc,, as the meaning behind the image was about 'lovers lies' affairs and deceit, The moments when you realise another has helped themselves to what is yours. The only incling of this is the ragged hair pieces in the rats hands and coming out of the bins. So if i were to do this again I would pay more attention to the little details to make the image more meaningful.

I will survive

 Singing and playing my instruments has always been a form of art to me, I covered this song today and though it would be nice to put it up on my influence and reflection blog. Again i have played around with conventions making this inspirational disco classic sound rather cathartic. I think it reflects the way I'm feeling and the way my work has always been, melancholy but quite hopeful in places.

Friday, 4 May 2012

(the exhibition)

I attended the second year exhibition at Dewsbury park yesterday evening. I immediately saw that the set out this time seemed more conventional and ordered than the previous future exhibition had been. I felt that this worked a lot better as the 'hidden gems' i spoke of in the last exhibition were no longer hidden and had their own place, which was a good thing. I felt that certain pieces in this exhibition really shone out from the rest, for example Sam Atkinson's 'Deus' piece was beautiful and i feel you could see within it the love, and sheer time effort and research that had gone into it. I think that perhaps this was without a doubt my favourite piece. I also loved the mourning jewelry by Hannah Tiffany it was delicate yet macabre and again I liked the connections that were made between the Bronte prescience in this area and the visual cultures of their time. I also loved the tall delicate sculptures (although i can't remember who did these) they were very beautiful.
  Reluctant to criticise anyone, some of the pieces i wasn't all too sure about, manly due to the fact i didn't really understand the connection with this area or the museum, but the pieces i mentioned i feel really shone out.

Wednesday, 2 May 2012

Have you heard?

This piece was inspired by one of my favourite Shakespearean characters, the Lady Ophelia. I love the woe and exuberance she expresses for the loss of her father and for her lover Hamlet. I find something extremely poetic in the way Ophelia is on the verges of madness yet seems at one with nature, and find it all the more beautiful that she seems to drown by accident rather than taking her own life which one might expect from her behaviour. It is tragically beautiful.
I believe that in life when people don't understand or just tend not to like something for one reason or another, they often take the low road and declare that thing or person mad. I personally think the world would be full of absolute dullards if there weren't any 'mad' people. So as well as an homage to one of my favourite characters I have also created this piece as a statement on 'madness' I'm sure many people have had this word thrown at them , but the more i hear it , the more I laugh and feel quite blessed, because after all some of the greatest people in history have had that 'insult' thrown at them , and it never stopped one of them it just made the world a much more beautiful and interesting place. So , if anyone ever calls any of you mad , just smile and know that you are actually quite an amazing person,( people just don't understand that yet)

This piece is my second attempt as drawing water, i feel it has improved a little from the picture i did of the sad bear in the woods,, there is much more detail in there and i feel it does look a little more like water than my last attempt. again i feel i have caught the cats character quite nicely within her facial features and have also tried to make the background setting much more elaborate, although i still think this needs to be developed further. over all , very happy with my progress