Screen Print Progression

Currently in my subject work I have been looking at the natural and organic forms created by the nature and weather on the rock pools in Southerndown. I drew this idea of taking inspiration from the landscape from my original chosen artwork by Teresa Lanceta ‘Rosas Blancas’, who draws inspiration from Morocco, especially its textiles. I have created these asymmetrical ringed shapes from the natural shapes I gathered from the rock pools.

As I have discussed before, I have developed a fixation with the colours orange and blue, and the harmony between the two complementaries. Therefore I decided to continue my orange and blue studies on and use them to layer up in my screen prints. I really like how they have worked with my prints, as I think using the method of screen printing has also been complimentary to them as of create flat, bold areas of block colour. I especially like the areas of my prints in which the two colours overlap as it creates depth against that flat surfaces of one colour.

Although I am really pleased with my prints and their ever-changing compositions, I can’t help but feel like something is missing. I want to take my prints to the next level. I discussed my prints with both visiting artist Julia Hopkins, and the printing technician Tom. Both suggested some really interesting ways to develop my work. Hopkins talked about playing with the transparency of my prints, due to her also agreeing that the most interesting areas of my screen prints being where the lines of the forms overlapped. Whenever I have screen printed before I have stuck to bold, flat colours. Although I like the use of dense thick sections of colour, it would be interesting to play with the transparency and hence the layering up, and how far I could push it.

When I spoke to Tom about my prints he discussed the use of puff medium, which creates a raised surface if you apply heat to the print. I had no idea you could create a raised surface in screen printing, and this is definitely a technique I want to look into further, I might see if I can buy some to trial this with.

After my two discussions with Julia Hopkins and Tom, I have also thought about how I could disrupt my shapes. Be this by cutting them up and braking the rings, collaging them back together in a way that may not make sense, taking this idea of playing with shapes and colour even more. I may try and combine my current shapes as well with concentrated patterns and textures and experiment with layering these up. Another brief idea I have thought about is printing on a textured surface to break up the strong sections of colour and shape.

 

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Tutorial with Julia Hopkins

At the end of last term I had a feedback meeting with previous CSAD student, and current Royal College of Art student, Julia Hopkins, as I was feeling as though I was coming to a roadblock within my practice.

We discussed several topics surrounding my practice that I think are going to help me re-engage me with my current work which is exploring my interpretations to natural environments.

Firstly, my patterned work reminded Hopkins of the golden rectangle, the mathematical ratio that visually attracts the audience to artwork. I like to concept of creating artwork purely based off of fitting this “perfect” ratio with no underlying meaning. I want to research into and explore this idea further as having meaning and depth behind work is something I’m struggling to work with right now. I am much more interested in our visual perception and what makes something attractive to the eye. Although I am enjoying generating work inspired by Southerndown, visual attraction to artwork fascinates me and is a concept I want to have a deeper understanding of.

The other idea that I found really interesting was the notion of combining my current Southerndown work with my work from Marrakech. This idea of taking to polar opposite, the organic and natural forms from Southerndown, and combining this with the precise and intricate zillij ornamentation of Morocco, fascinates me. I don’t know if this will be successful, as the two are so far opposed from each other, but I think it would be an interesting concept to play around with.

I found talking to a practicing artist outside of the art school really beneficial and refreshing for the development of my ideas. Julia Hopkins was able to offer me new thoughts and opinions on ideas I had never even considered before. In this final term leading up to the degree show I plan on exploring especially the concept of the golden triangle as I have never made work based on aesthetic and visual value before and think it is an important concept I need to understand.

How my Field Projects have Influenced my Studio Practice

I am pleased that we had the opportunity to choose our Field projects this year as I have found both of my projects really beneficial for the development of my subject work, however Home Truths was particularly important in this development.

Home Truths was beneficial in the expansion of my ceramic knowledge and skill development. I was able to experiment with a variety of different decorative techniques, including glazes and slips that I had previously never worked with. My final pieces made me realise how much I enjoy hand building. I created a collection of sculptures mimicking mass produced holiday souvenirs and combined them with personal family photos with links to these specific places. Although I am pleased with how my final pieces turned out, in any further ceramic work I do I definitely want to move more towards the abstract and expressive. I really want to explore the material and see how far I can push it.

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I have further researched into some sculptural ceramic artists that I plan on carry on looking at, such as Takuro Kuwata, who pushes the material to its limit, exploring colour and texture. I have always had this interest in ceramics, but have very limited knowledge. I now have a lot more confidence in exploring ceramics further, which I have begun to do within my subject work with my clay reliefs and sculptures. My biggest take from Home Truths is that I want to explore materiality and really focus on my interaction with the material. I want to experiment, pushing clay to its limits and exploring texture, to see if I can convey the sense of a specific place.

I have begun to explore form by making some small scale sculptures out of air-drying clay. This is only as a starting point to give me some initial ideas into how I can use clay to make sculptures reminiscent of the landscape. I am not sure how I feel combining my pattern with the sculpture as I think this detracts from its intended organic nature. As opposed to this use of pattern, I want to experiment with texture and thus interactivity as I feel this will push me much further, both in skill set and conceptually. This is a concept I will further explore.

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Site Venue: Generating Ideas

I have attempted to focus my site venue work as close to my practice as possible, as to try and gage an idea for different ways in which I could exhibit what I am currently working on. I am so used to simply hanging something on a white wall, and I am at the point that I think that that is a bit boring. Ways of exhibiting has allowed me to generate new ideas into alternative ways of showing my work.

For my cardboard box exhibition I channeled inspiration from Made in Roath. I visited many of the different venues of Made in Roath this year and found it really inspirational at the time for my own practice. I especially liked the idea of displaying work within a normal house, as it was nice to see work removed from the normal white wall setting of a gallery. Artwork intertwined with personal belongings, marked walls, and crowded rooms, to the point that it was not always obvious what the art was. I like the idea of removing it from the gallery setting, as I think it removes a bit of the stigma that artwork is precious and not to be touched. Therefore for my cardboard box exhibition, I made a mini scale of my living room back home in Worcester to see what it would look like if I were to exhibit my own work within it.

For both my diorama and my locker exhibition I have channeled from current working I am creating within my own practice. In both I have used bulbous and asymmetric forms combined with precise patterns.

I wanted to create the idea of synthetic nature within my locker exhibition. Looking at the form alone, I have tried to create the idea of something growing up the side of the locker, like a plant such as ivy may do to a building. The shapes I have used I took from studies of the rock pools in Southerndown. I have combined this with on one of the patterns I generated using the colours orange and blue which detracts from the natural shape, giving it a more synthetic feel. I like how through the combination of natural form and unnatural pattern and colour, that the sculpture becomes stuck between the two, existing in a state between the two.

Original blog post:

https://eviebanksart.wordpress.com/2018/04/12/site-venue-locker-exhibition/

I had a similar idea for my diorama in the sense of suspending between natural and synthetic.I thought about how I wanted this sculpture to be a miniature version of an installation for a gallery, and so to use such a multitude of bold colours on what would be in real life, a giant installation, would be a visual overload. I like this idea of pushing it too far as I am curious as to see what would happen. My diorama is comprised of three segments, in which, if it were real, people would walk around and through the installation, which would become almost a maze of colour

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Original blog post:

https://eviebanksart.wordpress.com/2018/04/02/site-venue-diorama-2-0/

Material Exploration and Thinking that Led to the Development of my Work

I have tried to experiment with as many materials as possible this year, as I don’t like limiting myself to a specific medium. So far I have explored, painting, drawing, screenprinting, ceramics, and collage.

Currently I am using clay and screen printing within my practice to translate my experiences and interpretations of the Southerndown landscape, as I have found them the most successful materials in doing so.  Before I visited Southerndown I had begun to create my own repeat patterns in response to Lanceta, however I ended up finding this quite boring as I had no justification or logic in my mind to be doing it, and I didn’t enjoy the process enough to be able to justify to myself to continuing it. However, in Southerndown I found myself looking at the rock pools and the hundreds of interesting shapes the weather and nature had had on the rocks to create these forms. I began taking photos of these shapes and quick sketched them up into my sketchbook. I wanted a fast and easy way to pump out quick responses to these products of nature, and so I turned to screen printing. I cut line drawings outlining the shapes I had gathered from black paper, and made a series of screen prints, overlapping the shapes to play around with form. Although it has nothing to do with the landscape itself I used the colours orange and blue, as as I have previously talked about, I have a deep fascination with the combination. They ended up working really well together, being especially interesting in areas that the two colours overlapped.

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I have also begun to make ceramic sculptures documenting these abstract forms and have also gone back to Southerndown to take ceramic reliefs from the rock pools, to document the different textures of the Southerndown coast. At the moment I want to explore the pairing of two completely different materials and processes. Although my screen prints and ceramics are drastically different, I think they compliment each other quite well in telling a complete story on my experience of a location, in this instance, Southerndown. I want to carry on this abstraction of landscape into my own interpretations through colour, form and texture.

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Although I have moved away from my original chosen artwork ‘Rosas Blancas’ by Teresa Lanceta a large amount; The inspiration is still there through this idea of documentation, whether it be documentation of textiles discoveries from Morocco, or  natural formations of rock pools in Southdown.

Continued Ideas in Response to Teresa Lanceta’s ‘Rosas Blancas’

After visiting the Venice Biennale in September, I chose Teresa Lanceta’s ‘Rosas Blancas’ as my chosen artwork, as I wanted to focus my practice on the exploration into cultures and places. Lanceta created her own tapestries which utilised repeat patterns, a technique that I have used within my own subject work.

‘Rosas Blancas’ drew inspiration from Lanceta’s textile discoveries in Morocco. I thought Lanceta would be especially inspirational for me as I also visited Morocco early this year and believed I would make a similar discovery. Instead of textile discoveries, I became fascinated with the incredibly heavy use of zillij around Marrakech, which is something I want to further explore.

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Teresa Lanceta ‘Rosas Blancas’

Original post on Teresa Lanceta ‘Rosas Blancas’:

https://eviebanksart.wordpress.com/2017/10/09/chosen-artist-teresa-lanceta-rosas-blancas/

I began my responses to ‘Rosas Blancas’ by creating repeat patterns and laying them over the top of collected paper from Venice. In other initial responses I played around with different materials and pattern compositions to see how far I could push the patterns. I was particularly pleased with the embroidered responses, as I liked the idea of creating texture within my work, a technique I have continued within my current work.

Initial responses blog post:

https://eviebanksart.wordpress.com/2017/10/24/responses-to-teresea-lancetas-rosas-blancas/

https://eviebanksart.wordpress.com/2017/10/30/painting-of-venice/

All of my work this year to date has taken inspiration from places I have visited. My first Field project, Home Truths explored personal memories I have, connected with specific places. I documented this connection through the use of sgraffito to scratch old childhood photos onto typical mass produced holiday souvenirs. After visiting Marrakech my work focused around the photos I had collected in Marrakech of the hundreds of zillij patterns scattered around the city, and my own responses to them. In which I combined their decorative architecture with buildings from home that have significance to me.

I have moved quite far away from my initial repeat patterns in response to ‘Rosas Blancas’, but the concept of drawing inspiration from places I have visited and cultures I have experienced has remained. I want to document my personal experiences of places I have visited, and experiment with how different materials can translate this. Currently I am working on a series of screen prints and ceramic sculptures in which I document the landscape of Southerndown.

Site Venue: Locker Exhibition

The locker exhibition encouraged us to display our work in a smaller space. I have never had to think about the prospect of my work being confined before, but I think having to create a piece of work to fit certain dimensions has really benefited my practice, as this is a real task I could face if I am to display any of my work in a gallery setting in the future.

For my locker exhibition, I decided to keep up with the theme of my diorama and link it to my subject work, combining both my work inspired by Southerndown and the patterns I have created. My piece definitely fits into the categories of colour and form, and has a fairly abstract finish.

I wanted to create the idea of synthetic nature within my locker exhibition. Looking at the form alone, I have tried to create the idea of something growing up the side of the locker, like a plant such as ivy may do to a building. I used papier-mâché to build my form, and then proceeded to paint it blue and orange, using one of my patterns from previous work.

The shapes I have used I took from studies of the rock pools in Southerndown. However, combined with the very unnatural pattern and colours, I think this throws the viewer off. Although this was not my original intent, I really like the harmony of the two contrasts, and the effect it has on the sculpture as a whole. I can see influence from Robert Morris’ ‘Untitled’, 1967-8, in the use of looms that tumble towards the floor and loose form.

In hindsight, I wish I had made my sculpture taller and explored the space within the locker even more, as I think it looks a little bit bare right now, and my aim was to make it look like this form had completely taken over the locker. However, as I created my sculpture over the easter holidays, without being able to refer back to the actual locker during construction, I think it has turned out fairly well and is a good starting point for if this locker work continues on.

I found it really enjoyable having to plan my work around a space, as opposed to the reverse. I also like this idea of an unexpected exhibition, putting artwork in unorthodox places. This has started to make me think of public locations around Cardiff in which I could display my work.