Monday, 31 January 2011

Final Major Project...

So here we start on the 40 credit module that will define my 2 years here at PCAD.  Where do I start?  How do I keep the underlying panic under control?  How do I make sure I enjoy this experience and not cock it up too easily like my last project?!  Well, I begin with looking at things I would love to include and continue:  sustainability of most of my work, keeping current issues intwinned with my conceptual ideas and mixing horticulture with my love of art.

I begin with looking at James Lovelocks theory of how the Earth is one complex entity, continually seeking and optimal equilibrium and one level of calm.  I've also continued looking at Claire Morgans work and the way she has an energy and movement to her work that is all in the way ech single tiny piece is positioned. 

My first idea is to include bulbs, rhizomes of some form and tree roots.  I have already hung 4 bulbs (supposedly 1 each for fire, earth, water and wind, the 4 main elements of James Lovelocks theories) and I want to work onto these with my previous experiences with the wheat paste ideas.  The bulbs have flaking thin skins that will fit in similarly with the colour and form of the wheatpaste, so this is something I want to continue experimenting with.

The idea of the tree roots, fits in with an exhibition I'm showing at in March.  It will be to take a young tree, possibly 2-4 years of age, so as it's not too big, and cut it off from the bottom of the trunk, so just the roots and a few inches of the trunk are present.  Then, for the exhibition I want to attach the trunk to the ceiling, so the roots hang down, and again, work into the roots with the wheatpaste ideas.

So for the next week or 2, I will need to:
  • Find a source of a few young trees I can dig up myself so they have a good root structure,
  • Experiment with the wheatpaste ideas onto my bulbs and document through photography
  • Continue researching artists and James Lovelock theories and similar.

Friday, 7 January 2011

all in place and settling in nicely, hopefully!

So, last night, after I finished my last panel, I went out and found 7 different spots around Plymouth that I thought would show a different environment for each panel, whether it be dry, windy, wet, cold, warm, likely to get taken down, all of these, to see if any of them grow their seedlings so we can see them change, or if they all stay relitively similar to the way they look now.  My idea was to produce a series of wallpapers, but this wouldn't have worked with the time I had left, as wallpapers are a larger thing altogether and would have taken me ages to finish.  I wanted to be able to focus on the situation and changing of the panels, rather than making them.  I also said I wanted to creating a fluctuating, ephemeral and dynamic piece that changes with the differences in its surroundings, and I'm hoping what you see below, will not be too ephemeral, but with time, fluctuate and be dynamic in their own situations.
Here is my first panel, in a park on the side of a tree next to the path.  This will slightly blend into its environment, be sheltered from the strongest elements of the wind and rain and possibly grow.  If not, I think it makes an interesting site situated art-work on its own, as I intended.
I chose to put this one here, as it slightly merges with the moss and shrub bed above it, and below(out of the photograph)  there where bits of dirt and leaves.  By just looking at this photo, you can also see how it does stand out though too.  I also chose to put it here because again it will be naturally watered by the rain, be slightly out of the strongest elements, but be somewhere more urban than the tree above that is an unusual place for something like seedlings to grow.

My third piece, somewhere very obvious, juxtaposing and easily torn down soon as permission is required to flyer here.  It will be interesting how long it stays up, and if it even gets time to visually flucuate.
This was put on a flat surface, on top of a wall right on the edge of the barbican looking out to sea.  I placed it by some of the ivy growing over the side.  I know (especially with the weather we're having today) that this piece won't last long, or grow as a matter of fact.  The elements will be harsh on it, and more than likey rip it right away before someone else does!
This was placed in the underground bus-station, which is totally under cover.  It won't grow due to it being fry, which makes me think, should I interfer and water it every evening?  It will be out of all the elements here, but close to alot of visitors, which will make an interesting documentation...
This one is placed on an old rusting billboard, just outside the main city centre, which I have had a fascination with for a long time.  It merges in with its colour, and is so small its almost impossible many people will see it.  I set it just above eye-line, so that the people who do notice it will be suprised to see something like this here.  I think it has a chance to grow, as it's facing opposite the prevailing winds and it's not on a highly busy walkway.
Last but not least, I placed this one on a wall opposite my flat balcony, so as to watch as people view it.  It's next to a pavement which gets very busy for the local school run, and it's next to one of my pieces from a module last year of a guy drinking a pint of beer.  That's been there for amost a year, so it gives me hope about this new piece of work.
I'm off in this disgusting weather now to go and document my first day of my panels exciting outdoor lives.  I just hope they're still there after such a short time.

Wednesday, 5 January 2011

5 panels down...

Ok, so sofar all they look like a bits of plant matter, but that's the idea, to begin like this, and watch how they change in the different areas I put them.  I've decided that the location should be decided by a) different weather conditions to produce different affects on the greenery and possibility of growing seedlings b) somewhere that will have a good audience, whether they know they are looking at the pieces or not, so a busy rural area, like a pathway or national trust area, and urban areas like city parks or flower beds along the main street.  The part I'm still not sure of is if I want them to be completely out of place or not.  Should I put them places like, on sides of very visible trees, or on bus shelter windows and in popular graffiti spots?  I really like this idea, as it will be more in your face, more likely to become ephemeral for the reason of people taking them down!
So far I've made 5, which I will try and put up tonight or early tomorrow morning, I would prefer to put them up when not many people are around.  I hope to make a few more, maybe another 5, as many as I can, the more the merrier!

Tuesday, 4 January 2011

heres a similar yet new idea...

Today I have sped up my production process twofold, so I've decided to...
  • continue along the lines of this design BUT
  • make them smaller so I can make 5 or 6 good ones in the next day or 2 and
  • instead of having them indoors in the studio, because the weather is much warmer now, I want to place them out in the urban and rural landscape, 
  • maybe film some of the reactions over the next week and play them at my assessment
  • photograph them, how long they stay there, how and if they grow.
It will be a situation in a situation!  Brilliant....hopefully?!

Anyway, must get on, I've got some organising to do and a whole lot of sewing and sowing!

oh dear oh dear!

Ok this is how far I am so far, I've made this, but unlie I planned, the sewn roots are actually almost impossible to see, you cant really tell what it idea was to do this and then fill the roots with seeds (see below) and use old rotting vegetable matter to paste around the roots to create more of a contrast.  Is it now going to work?  Do I continue with this or start on a new idea?  I need some tutorial help here before I panic myslef to death!!!