an artists' view

an artists' view

Wednesday, 27 July 2011

Art House; Members' Open Exhibition

Tonight is the Wakefield ArtWalk, 5-9pm.
Amongst the venues open and showing work, is The ArtHouse which is holding a Members' Open Exhibition.
It was decided that everyone who entered their work would have one piece exhibited, so one of my pieces is in.
I haven't been down yet, so it's still a mystery to me which piece was chosen. I'll find out when I pop down tonight.

The painting on display is 'Earthworks', which was last seen in the ArtyVan event I did in May.

Wednesday, 20 July 2011

TED talks; Janet Echelman

Look out for JANET ECHELMAN's sculptures. Her website is

and her sculptures are there, as well as the recent (8 June 2011) 'TED TALK' she did. It's on YouTube. Shows off the starting point of her sculpture; she started out, hand tie-ing nets with fishermen in India, and creating these light, fragile, but voluminous sculptures.
Since then, she's created lots of public art, and has shifted into more hi-tech materials.
They sway and move in the wind; are brightly coloured. More like ameoba, or jellyfish, than engineered, sculptural, machine-made 'objects'. They are incredibly delicate, and maintain a softness and delicacy belied by their manufacture.

Monday, 18 July 2011

the 21st century

Jon and I have moved into the 21st century and gone onto.....broadband!
Already things are working faster; but the downside is, we've realised that the pooter is slow. So putting 1+1 together, we've realised there must be a bug in it. It needs a visit to the pooter-doc, so will be going off there soon.

In the meantime; I've been using up the dye I brought home from the textile course I did earlier this year. Dyed a couple of hankies I bought from a charity shop, and the Shibori piece I'd been doing for months (!). The colour is very pale, and really quite surprising. They are drying as I write. They'll make an interesting addition to my growing textile collection.

I've also been doing some hand embroidery on the Labyrinth textile piece (above) I began a few weeks ago. That's looking nice, though still got work to do on it.

Monday, 11 July 2011

Festivals and Fabrics

Another busy weekend; been off to Wales for the SmallNations festival. In Blanche, acting this time as a camper-van 'proper' rather than a small exhibition space!
Whilst there, I managed to buy some lovely organzie fabric scarves. They should go nicely with the textile work I'm doing.

The festival was situated in a beautiful hill/valley. From the hilltop we could see right down the valley for miles; a shame I didn't have a telephoto lens! I just couldn't get the receding blue of the mountain ranges in my photos.
Like a Chinese silk painting.

We went to a talk by Dr Dan, a professor at Swansea University, who talked about the plants in the hedgerow and the fields we were camped in. A mine of information. And how bracken is not the 'plant-pest' we think it is; it's a veritable treasure-trove of wildlife. Including Adders, whose scale pattern echoes the pattern created by bracken.
I can feel some creative research coming on!!!!

In the garden is growing this wierd plant; neither Jon nor I know what this is!

Today I've been up to the Adult Education centre where the textile course is held, and enrolled on the course from September.
So to get on with the research for this textile piece I'm planning!

Saturday, 2 July 2011

Studios; Textiles; War

I've been very busy recently; moving into a fantastic space in Westgate Studios, which is massive compared with the previous studio I had there.
The textiles course I've been doing is coming to an end; there's only 1 more session to do. I'm hoping to enrol on it again for September, as I've been so inspired by the work we've done there, despite the fact we can only do samples.
I've got an idea for another piece of textiles work; over the summer I'll be doing some research on it, and some planning. I'm exploring using different textiles techniques on different segments of this piece. Of course it's all very well thinking about doing that, but I need to be able to unify the surface, so it doesn't look like a random selection of samples!
I sat in my studio on Friday, getting some basic ideas down on paper; it was wonderful to sit there, feeling I was back into my creative 'routine' again.

Still; there's lots of work to get on with, and work to complete.....isn't there always!

Jon bought me PJHarvey's recent cd 'let england shake', for my birthday. It's very impressive, and moving too. She approached it as a 'war artist', saying in interviews that although there was a long history of visual artists being deployed in wars, she didn't know of a musician being employed as a 'war artist'. So the songs are all about war.
One of those co-incidences happened, as I'd just read Pat Barkers 'Life Class' immediately preceding listening to Polly Jean. I'd chosen 'Life Class' because it concerned itself with artists at the Slade in the spring of 1914, and how they were caught up in WW1 when it broke out. There are references to real people, Henry Tonks, Augustus John, though the main characters are fictional.
Obviously I thought of Paul Nash, who was a soldier in WW1, who painted what he'd seen, and experienced. And who went on to serve as a war artist in WW1 and WW2.
Paul Nash is a favourite artist of mine.
And so is PJHarvey.
Both now designated 'war artists'!
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