My Professional Website
Finalised Artist Statement
5 Key moments- Documentation
- Gap Crit– My Gap Critique not only allowed me to install my work in different environments but it also let me see others reactions to my work and how they felt towards it.
- Pillows– In using a domestic object everyone can relate to for comfort, I found a way to project my ideas of the body into them. This made me want to create a narrative through domestic objects that everyone can relate to, altering the meaning of these objects.
- Leaving the Figurative– Through leaving the figurative form I created globular forms which allowed me to express the sensation of being within the body rather than the visual form of the body.
- Trip to Derby to see how to Build a Motor– Wanting to make a kinetic piece of art I went to Derby to meet up with an engineer to understand the building of motors. This gave me the knowledge I needed to design and create my own motor
- Initial Tumour ideas– The tumour series is a piece which allowed me to channel my core emotions into my work. The development of the tumours helped me develop my skills in working with wax and other materials this helped with the making of “Phil” through the use of wax and wool to create its surface.
5 Key moments- Contextualisation
- Cripplewood- Berlinde de Bruyckere This piece made me think about what I could use to represent flesh. After seeing this piece I started experimenting with wax.
- Cell XXVI Louise Bourgeois– This piece of work made me question how to capture the human form as a symbol of a mental state rather than a recognisable form.
- Paul Thek- Meat Cables– Meat Cables allowed me to question ways of installing my work in different environments for example around the building, high up or low down to make the viewer question if they were intentionally left in these locations or abandoned by the artist.
- Deleuze on Francis Bacon– In reading Deleuze’s philosophical readings of Francis Bacon’s work, this inspired me to infuse myself not just physically but mentally into my works of art.
- The rubber hand experiment– This demonstrated to me how powerful art can be and challenged me to create a piece which we as an audience can feel our own sensations within.
After planning exactly where I would place each tumour I put them out around the building. It was interesting to see how people reacted and interacted with them. The one in the small lift fell and people could have left it but instead they came to me in a panic telling me of it falling. I intend for these pieces to go missing, to crack and break and become more fragile each day through doors getting opened up on to them and other environmental changes that goes on throughout the degree show within the building. Some are in large public spaces like reception where no one would touch it and some are in the lift where when the doors close they can do what they wish to these tumours. I am really excited to see where they turn up, if they go missing or get moved around because I want people to engage with them however they wish. Tumours are not only a reflection of my experiences but are a social experiment to see how people treat them. They have no eyes to judge and are helpless this may make the viewer less guilty if they pick and prod at them.
I wanted to keep my options open as to how I would display the plinth to create it to be more bed-like I tried a Valance over it to see if this would give more of a appearance of a bed. I found this distracting and not professional looking. The cold plinth painted white allows for the viewer to fully look at the rusted mattress. The directional light hits off the rusted mattress and creates shadows of the spirals on the surface of the plinth. I feel that the plinth being at the same height as a bed is enough to suggest bed without trying to over do it with bedding.
I have found it difficult to come up with a name for this piece as I want it to be recognised as a sensation that the body undergoes. I was going to call it degradation however this was too literal as the wax will be doing this over time during the degree show and I wrote about it in my artist statement. I have instinctively been calling the piece a he and I have come to the conclusion of calling it “Phil”. I truly believe that this piece has a life of its own and I think giving him a name like Phil was appropriate as it will make the audience think and question the name of the piece.
Over this last week I have been building my degree show space. It has been a struggle to be able to make sure everything is in the correct position every time an element of the piece has to move for things like painting the plinth and final touches to make the space look professional. In using a wooden board I blocked the window in the space so I can have more control of directional lighting onto the piece. I want the light to be grazing the body gently and subtly illuminating its form so every grain of detail is intensified for the viewer to visually explore. I have used three directional spotlights all at different angles as to highlight it 360 degrees.
I used gumpaste to fill and cover any cracks in the walls to hide any blemishes that would distract from the piece and sanded any bumps down in both the plinth and the walls. I decided to have white walls and a white plinth to open the space out and allow the light to reflect off these surfaces. By being white this also creates a minimal amount of distraction so the viewer can zone in and focus on the piece itself. Through the installment of the space I wanted it to be less enclosed as this would draw viewers in seeing this globular form move in the corner of their eye. I wanted the area to be as spacious as possible to allow people to walk around the breathing body and be able to stand back from the piece and reflect on their own sensations they feel from looking at the piece.
I decided that I didn’t want my piece to sound too much like a machine so I soundproofed the inside of the plinth to muffle the sound. In doing this the sound is still there however it sounds less like a scraping machine and more like a wheezing breath which I feel adds depth to the piece enhancing the viewer’s experience.
My installations propose a translation of the sensorial and psychological conditions of the body into an abject presence. Crafting my artworks out of wax, my work suggests veins and arteries while the degradation and fragility of the material reflects the inevitable end of our existence and the impermanence of life.
The visceral deformation of the body allows us to physically feel our own presence and connection to our human sensations: we are more than the physical, we all own an interior state of being. By moulding globular forms to translate the fragility of our mental state I aim to evoke self-reflection into our own internal sensations and feelings of being confined to flesh and bone.
This developing product by German designer Stefan Ulrich is a pillow that moves to the sensations of your body giving the realistic feeling of a body next to you. I stumbled upon this on the internet when I was looking for ways to create my motor for my breathing piece. Initally I was interested in the way this piece mirrored movements of the body however as I began to understand the piece it became more than just a moving pillow. The sensors on the pillow react to the slightest human touch using artificial muscle technology this piece moves realistically as a human body. This piece was made to cure loneliness and aid our emotional wellbeing.
The Designer states – “People already bury themselves in possessions and shield themselves from real life with technology. So if robots and objects can fulfill all their emotional needs as well, why do they need other humans?” (http://www.thewire.com/national/2010/11/robot-blob-pillow-will-cure-loneliness/18339/) Overall I feel that this design illustrates our need for human- like companionship and comfort against loneliness.
These are rough sketches where I wish to display my tumour sculptures. In lifts, toilets, underneath lockers against walls I want them to be dotted around the building to make people question them outside of a conventional gallery setting and more in a social environment. These tumours symbolise the release of negative energy conjured up within our minds being extracted and discarded as unwanted. I am really intrigued to see how people react to these pieces and if they touch, move or damage them in any way. I feel that it is important for this piece to evolve over time throughout the degree show as some may fall from their initial fixed positions I wish to see if people ignore them or help them back to the place they were.
In having these sculptures within dusty crevices of the building I want people to feel their own bodies, their own veins and tightenings of muscles as they move. They are not only about psychological growths of anxieties but also of how fragile we actually are physically.
The tumours are also about the way we treat each other within the world we live in and how that affects our psyche. We can become jealous or envious, hateful or nasty towards each other. These negative thoughts create these psychological tumours that absorb any form of kindness and grow putting not only a strain on the mind but also a strain on the physical body that can make us self-conscious. These tumours in creating them I have taken them out of my body and placed them out into the external world in forgotten places of the building. I want them to be seen and reflected on as unwanted as well as something that has gone wrong within the body that has been dissected, examined and then rejected from the body.