Friday, 19 March 2010

Grammatical ignorance

I have seen this sign in my street for the past few weeks and it has bugged me immensely.
The interesting thing is there is no just one of these beauties, but two right next to each other.

It makes me cringe each time I drive past it,and yesterday when I was driving with Jaz and Hed, We all laughed and he kindly pulled over so I could document this lunacy.

Cox and Watts (2009)
"Almost everything that is manufactured is designed, the clothes we are wearing, the furniture, equipment and textiles of our interior spaces" (Cox and Watts, 2007, p3)

and some things are designed badly...

Cox, S and Watts, R (2009) Teaching art and Design 3 -11. Continuum. London.

Thursday, 11 March 2010

Kevin Van Aelst - Artist's Statement

"My color photographs consist of common artifacts and scenes from everyday life, which have been rearranged, assembled, and constructed into various forms, patterns, and illustrations. The images aim to examine the distance between the ‘big picture’ and the ‘little things’ in life—the banalities of our daily lives, and the sublime notions of identity and existence. While the depictions of information--such as an EKG, fingerprint, map or anatomical model--are unconventional, the truth and accuracy to the illustrations are just as valid as more traditional depictions. This work is about creating order where we expect to find randomness, and also hints that the minutiae all around us is capable of communicating much larger ideas."

I was glad i found this, gave me a greater insight into the artist. I love his photos.

Absolute Photographic Genius - Kevin Van Aelst

Left Index Finger 2007. Digital C Print.

Apple Globe 2007. Digital C Print.

Hawaii 2007. Digital C Print

Chromosomes 2005. Digital C Print.

Right Ring Finger 2007. Digital C Print.

More brilliant examples of genius can be found on the artist's website

Vinegar Experimentation, The Last of the Rust

Whilst finding out and uploading my ball photographs I came across more rust photos. This was an experimentation that came after my lace rusting where I purchased some silk material and soaked it in vinegar. I then used string to tie the soaked material to a rusted piece of metal so the rust would transfer in a pattern, much like tie dye. I was inspired to do this by the work of Liz Plummer (see earlier posts)

It didn't quite work out as effectively as I would of liked and I think that was down to my piece of rust not being circular enough, therefore the way the material could be tied to the rust was limited.Here are some of the results. I would change this factor if i was to continue with this direction of my art as well as experimenting with the amount of contact time the material is left with the rust and then analysis the process and the results and adapt the process to create ideals. I could also vary the tightness of the string and evaluate this impact upon the end result.

This is after 3 days attached to the rust.

It was definitely worth the experimentation as it is something I have never done before and i like the way each result would be different. It links to the process art i was so fond of last year also, which reminds me of Mcniff (1998)

"The process knows where it needs to go and if it is exclusively directed or controlled by one person, we miss the opportunity to learn this lesson" (Mcniff, 1998, p24)

Mcniff (1998) Trust the process, an artist's guide to letting go. Shambhala Publications. Boston


My ball is getting quite large now...

The technique is padding out with the bubblewrap and putting in and shaping with the clingfilm.

I just want it to get really big, quickly. But i know it is a process that takes time.

Mcniff (1998) Says
The biggest problem for adults and children is that everyone want quick results. They dont realise you have to work at it. They have to spend time at it and be patient. Its commitment.

I know that feeling well....

Mcniff, S. (1998) Trust the Process, An Artists guide to Letting Go. Shambhala Publications Inc. Boston


This is my ball at the stage it was at yesterday. I am discovering it is taking longer than i anticipated to make, especially around school, websites and assignments.This is 7 hours on from the previous ice ball pictures.

I took a photgraph of my mom holding the to show a comparison of size, she tried to take some of me with it, but she is not very good at using technology, or posing, bless her.

The equipment...

I will spend some more time on it tomorrow, after I finish Towards Leadership assignment, it has been the most annoying thing to tackle the past few weeks.

Ball update

I now have an ENORMOUS
supply of bubblewrap, selotape, clingfilm and clear wrapping for my ice ball, donated by locate shops.So much so i do not think i am going to need to buy any at all to complete it as the stores usually only throw it away.

:) score

If you make art what happens when you die?

I thought this was incredibly clever.
The piece relates to the work of Jacob Epstein, but i love the way you could think of almost any artist and connect it to this piece.

It's like a flowchart for dead artists.


Following a very short Towards Leadership Lecture, Jaz and I thought we would take the opportunity to head to Walsall Art Gallery where the main exhibition was called 'Party' to mark the New Art Gallery's 10th anniversary.

My favourite piece of work in the exhibition was by David Batchelor called
'Disco Mécanique'.The artist used hundreds of pairs of plastic sunglasses and turned into kaleidoscopic mirrorballs.

He made then circular to connect the piece to the human eyeball,metaphorically speaking, then he tied this together further by making them brightly coloured, linking together the way colour is the absence of light and the way the eye perceives colour.

It was one of the aspects of the exhibition you could actually photograph and we both loved getting up close to the art.

For another persons insight of the exhibition, read this blog


Albert Einstein cited in Fisher and Williams (2004, p.6) states that,

"Imagination is more important than knowledge. For knowledge is limited while imagination embraces the whole world."

Fisher, R. & Williams, M. (2004) Unlocking Creativity. London: David Fulton Publishers.

Wednesday, 3 March 2010


Yesterday as my early birthday treat I was taken to Stratford to go to the theatre and for a bit of a mooch around. I thoroughly enjoyed it as although it is only an hour away i have never actually been.It was also an okay day weather wise yesterday, for England anyway.

We spent the day strolling around the little cobbled streets, admiring all the pretty, quaint cottages and wealth of black and white half timber buildings. One of which, located in the center of what is now the high street is Shakespeare's birthplace.

The town also houses the bards grave in the local church. It was interesting walking around and seeing such a beautiful place that wherever you looked a Shakespeare theme is evident. Whether it be in statues, place names or names or bars and restaurants.

The play on the night was also brilliant with the acting being some of the highest in calibre i have ever scene. I was quite surprised by the story aswell, as we went to see King Lere and I didnt quite realise how much of a tragedy it was.

Shakespeare investigates old age, mortality, family and man’s need for religious belief and the capacity to endure.

I was quite surprise when one of the characters had his eyes gauged out. It was so realistic and i ma not into anything gory but the realism was most impressive, as were the costumes.

I recommend to all who can sit through the 3 and a half hours of old english. It's worth it!

we also went on press night, so here is a link to the guardians review of the adaptation.

The guardian's review

Why you should buy art...

Found this whilst browsing...

click to enlarge

courtesy of neurartic blog

Monday, 1 March 2010

The SOD project

Just stumbled across this whilst looking for outdoor installation art and thought some of the observations were quite funny.

The piece features three artists working together to create installations out of SOD (squares of grass) The one Iparticularly enjoyed was by Roger Maddox, who constructed a cross walk out of strips of the grass. The thing i liked most was peoples responses to the art, noting that it was the children that were the most excited. They were jumping around,upon and around the strips of SOD and retracing their steps.

It is interesting that it was noticed that alot of people walked around the strips and the artists displays a theory upon this of ' cultural conditioning' and not wanting to disturb the grass.

Those who are attracted to what departs from the norm were clearly impressed. No one appeared to be either upset, or annoyed, some were clearly amused, and others paid little attention.

How funny. Was this the intention?


The intelligence eye - David Perkins

I read this theory in a book about why we make art and why it is taught and thought it was relevent.

Perkins says that when working with art objects ' something special' is recieved that cannot be gained from any other subject.

Art objects offer;

1) "Sensory anchoring - artworks provide an anchor for attention over an extended period of exploration"

This is supporting evidence for taking children to galleries, to engage and explore different artists and art.

2) Instant access - the picture is here and now, it is accessible at a quick glance.

There is some truth in the expression a picture says a thousand words and it is true. We are sensory people and we take in parts of art instantanteously.

3)Personal engagement - "works of art beckon you to become involved with them. We are rarely neutral." I think this compliments the fact that we are sensory human beings alot and this is what I love about art, whether it is diabolical, wonderful, emotive, controversial... everyone has an opinion about it.

As Hickman (2005) puts it,

"Art is a multifaceted, complex and contested phenomenon"

4)Dispositional atmosphere - Art can provide a context that facilitates or cultivates a range of positive thinking dispositions.

Supporting the National Curriculum aims and values.

5)Wide thoughtful cognition - "Through thoughtful looking at art, we can use many different styles of cognition, including analytical thinking, visual processing and testing hypotheses"

Art is an ideal way to encourage children to experiment and be innovative. To think, readress and explore and develop new ways of thinking.

6) Multi connectedness "They allow us to make connections with a great variety of things which can include social themes, philosophical conundrums, features of formal structure, personal anxieties and insights and historical patterns"

This final point illustrates why I think the arts have been sectioned out as a key area of learning for the new primary curriculum. As they are able to address a vast number of life issues in an engaging and fun way.

Hickman R, (2005) Why we make art and why it is taught. Intellect books. Bristol