Sunday, 18 November 2012

Zine project work in progress

As our zines were meant to be related to our personal projects, I decided that some of the content of mine should be made up of photographs of my dream heart cages, as I had begun over summer (see previous post here). I managed to create three in total. Initially the obvious option for photographing them was to use the studio at college, as I have done for previous projects, but it seemed like quite a sterile environment to put the objects in. I asked for my friend Tom (a photography student) to help me go out and take pictures of them in an environment where I could hang them from tree branches. This background helps to create a more dreamy atmosphere for the hearts; coordinates with the flower pattern on the fabric; and in my mind helps to symbolise that the dreams themselves are a natural and mysterious phenomenon.

Due to time restraints on both sides, we ended up with very limited time to go out and get the photos done. We also found that it was very difficult to stop the hearts from spinning round once I had hung them up! Tom managed to get some good shots though. It was slightly problematic photographing the hearts to look good as objects, as well as making sure that the angle revealed the images inside them. As this project is still not officially assessed until our module deadline at Christmas, I'm keen to experiment more with some close-ups that focus on the drawings inside, as well as more of the hearts from a distance.

I will also need time to add further content to the zine itself, so that it doesn't simply become a book full of photos...but it would still be nice to keep a little side-project booklet of the photos on their own, seeing as the sculptures took a lot of time and effort to complete!

Missing feline company

Today I have suddenly realised just how much I miss my cat. Strangely enough, she is one of the most encouraging individuals when it comes to my work. At home in York when I'm making/drawing something she will always be there watching, inspecting everything, occasionally sitting herself right on top of something when it's clear I'm not giving her enough attention...generally being friendly and attentive company. There's something quite lonely about Manchester without having a Molly wandering around the house.
Molly joining Anna for lunch.

Leon the Lion

My lion had been sitting unfinished for quite some time until one day I decided to finish him properly. He is now a proud resident on our work desk at home. 

New York book shopping

The highlight of my shopping in the city was definitely our visit to The Strand bookstore. It had three floors- two separate ones for art books and rare books. Most of my spending money went on purchases there; it was hard to resist when there was so much choice and mostly much cheaper than books tend to be back here in England. 

Friday, 16 November 2012

André da Loba

Our first class visit in New York was to see André da Loba at the shared studio building The Invisible Dog in Brooklyn. 
We started by viewing the exhibition Shaboygen by Steven and William Ladd, which covered the bottom floor of the building. 
These strange bead trees were my favourite feature in the room. Unlike some of the other pieces, which just looked like boxes of trinkets or decorative fabric arrangements, these had more mystery about them...perhaps more of a story to tell. I wonder why the artists chose to make these tree shapes out of the beads; were they portraying a particular scene or environment? Their formation interests the viewer and you subconsciously try and attach more of a story/purpose to them. 
...followed by a lift up to the studio floor (a huge lift like none other I've ever been in!)...
...and slowly the entire group took turns to cram into André da Loba's studio, where he let us take pictures and be nosey in general...
These little men were some of my favourite things in the studio- they remind me of a papier mache wise man my dad made at school when he was little.
I could have stayed for hours in this room! It seemed like a real-life tour of André's imagination. There was so much work to see, so many creations and characters, different ideas everywhere you looked!
 ...Afterwards we went up to the next floor where there was another exhibition and we all got to rest our legs a little while as André gave us a performance displaying his work. We went away feeling very inspired!
Here is a video performance of his, Zeitgeist, that includes some of the same pieces.
I made some notes at the time:
That was a great first day!